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  1. #1
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    Default Mabua Lions almost kill couple.

    Whilst on our recent trip to Mabua and on an early morning drive, we met some people who informed us that a couple staying at Leshlaogo were nearly killed by Lions.

    Curiosity was very high and we decided to visit and find out for ourselves. We arrived at the camp to be greeted by Connie(not her real name). Johnny (not his real name) was trying catch up on some sleep.

    The camp was nicely pitched with an OZ 5 under the A frame and the camp was neat and tidy. Connie did appear to be in a state of mild shock and welcomed our visit. We think she just needed to offload. We sat with her for a while as she told the story.

    Around 10:30 the night before a pride of 6 arrived at camp, they think 2 males and 4 females. As usual they checked out the shower for water and seemed laid back. Connie and Johnny are experienced travellers and went inside the tent zipping up all doors. At this point I notice that the OZ 5 has a mesh insert.

    The Lions made them selves comfortable around the camp and looked like they would settle there for the night. After an hour or two the females decided that they would investigate the ammo boxes outside the tent. As one of them brushed against the tent, the tent moved. This got them a little curious and they investigated more, pushing their faces against the mesh and smelling. They also decided that playing with the guy ropes was a good game and that maybe the tent might taste good as they sampled it with their teeth.

    Connie and Johnny kept very calm during all this and in the middle of the tent, but as you can imagine, wide awake. This went on for a lifetime but was probably around half an hour or so before the Lioness wandered off. Discussion was had as to what to do next, they were not comfortable and worried about falling asleep in the tent while they were still around. They discussed walking the short distance to the car and agreed that they would go together. As Johnny said, if we die, we die together.

    Seeing the Lions laying down, they calmly left the tent and walked the few steps to the car and locked them selves in.

    Sleep did not come easy though and the Lions only moved on a couple of hours after the sun came up. I think Connie's adrenalin high was just about petering out as she finished the story.

    The bush telegraph is amazingly quick as more people arrived just then to also find out what happened. Johnny woke up and also came to have a chat. Calm and collected, just knackered due to lack of sleep, he put it down to one more adventure. He said that there was no aggression shown but due to the sheer size of these Lions he was worried that they may want to use them as playthings.

    We saw eight of the Mabua Lions while we were there, one morning we awoke to find four of them around 100 m from our camp on Mabua Pan. They are impressive, not just big, huge is a good word from them. I would also worry if they wanted to play footie with me.

    Good on Johnny and Connie for not sensationalising the whole affair, but again we can take lessons on taking care when camping in the unfenced area's.
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    Last edited by Stranger; 2015/10/01 at 11:49 AM.
    Stranger

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  2. #2
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    Dont worry, it's only a matter of time before a "i know animal behaviour" expert is going to get eaten. I have no doubt that people are feeding and watering these cats. (not everyone but some are.)
    Jeep, there is only one.

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    As much as I hate to think this, I fear that you are right. There is so little water in Mabua that the camps become regular visits for water and I am sure that many will think baiting cause no harm. I have had people openly describe how they leave water out in pans for the night animals.
    Stranger

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    Good on Johnny and Connie for not sensationalising the whole affair

    You are grossly sensationalising it with your post title, which is not a good reflection of what actually happened according to your excellent description.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RodS View Post
    Good on Johnny and Connie for not sensationalising the whole affair

    You are grossly sensationalising it with your post title, which is not a good reflection of what actually happened according to your excellent description.
    That's what I was thinking?


    A nice little read, sure. But were they nearly killed? Doubt it.
    I'm sure there's lots of people who've had lions fiddle with their tents before.

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    Whats important is that no one panicked, they kept their cool. About to die I don't think so. 10/10 for the way they handled it.
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    Mabua is so high on my list of priority destinations right now, I think I'll book a week there next week as this is one of the Botswana gems I've never been to, shame on me.


    But yes, seeing as I sold my Oz RV4 a couple of years ago and my Malamoo tents are a bit flimsy, I think given the reports of the size of these cats and the fact that they're becoming used to humans, I think its time for the rtt to be dusted off again and put into service.
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  8. #8
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    These are the lions Stranger is referring to... we saw them at that campsite the day before, then found them at the campsite opposite the day after the couple had their experience...
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  9. #9
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    Dit is niks nuut nie! 5 jaar gelede het hul die kampeerders by Kidding 2 se handdoeke fyn en flenters gespeel!

    Ek dag eers hul het mense gejaag ....nou dit! Jy is in hulle gebied en respekteer hulle! Raas met hulle! Hul hou nie van lawaai nie. Maar hopelik gaan al hoe mimder mense soontoe!!! mabua raak te gewild.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by RodS View Post
    Good on Johnny and Connie for not sensationalising the whole affair

    You are grossly sensationalising it with your post title, which is not a good reflection of what actually happened according to your excellent description.
    Did no one tell you I am quite good at that
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham View Post
    That's what I was thinking?


    A nice little read, sure. But were they nearly killed? Doubt it.
    I'm sure there's lots of people who've had lions fiddle with their tents before.
    First line of my story

    "Whilst on our recent trip to Mabua and on an early morning drive, we met some people who informed us that a couple staying at Leshlaogo were nearly killed by Lions."
    Stranger

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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Die SwartKat View Post
    Mabua is so high on my list of priority destinations right now, I think I'll book a week there next week as this is one of the Botswana gems I've never been to, shame on me.


    But yes, seeing as I sold my Oz RV4 a couple of years ago and my Malamoo tents are a bit flimsy, I think given the reports of the size of these cats and the fact that they're becoming used to humans, I think its time for the rtt to be dusted off again and put into service.
    Please don't let my sensationalism put you off. Many people go to Mabua with ground tents and there are many ways to enclose the A frames.

    Kids however I would worry about in Mabua, they would be velcroed to me
    Stranger

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stranger View Post
    Please don't let my sensationalism put you off. Many people go to Mabua with ground tents and there are many ways to enclose the A frames.

    Kids however I would worry about in Mabua, they would be velcroed to me
    I take my kids with everywhere I go. Which is why I haven't been to Mabua. As much as I'd love to go, I simply feel it's not safe for kids. One day when they're teenagers yes, but with the smallest being 7 it's not a risk I'm willing to take

  14. #14
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    Well, two comments on this story:

    First: These lions are used to be around campers and curiosity has them coming coser with each contact.

    Second: You don't need to consciously "feed or water" these cats, they know people are taking showers and come for the run-off water, they done that for a long time.

    Last: Good reaction to keep the calm and adjust to the situation, risk was there but they handled it well.
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  15. #15
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    They certainly do look well fed and not too thirsty.


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  16. #16
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    These really are big animals. No lack of food source for them. Oryx, Springbok, Kudu, Wildebeest
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    Last edited by Stranger; 2015/10/01 at 01:24 PM.
    Stranger

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    Do you possible work for the newspapers in charge of headlines?

    Very sensational headline, then a story about inquisitive lions in the camp

    Good thing they remain calm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirk View Post
    Do you possible work for the newspapers in charge of headlines?

    Very sensational headline, then a story about inquisitive lions in the camp

    Good thing they remain calm.
    Could have been a journalist ................ I use too many swear words
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    Point being though, and the reason for putting pen to paper is that there are people who have never been there and it is always good to have information at hand.

    I like Ellies, but the Chobe Ellies and the ones I saw in Savuti are amongst the most aggressive I have seen. These Lions are amongst the most laid back. This in itself creates a false security. Just one playful swipe of a paw could kill you, one little taste of your head, even though you are spat back out, could kill you. Run and I have no doubt they will say "game on". They are cats, as wild as you can get, no bail out for food or water, no help when you get old and kicked out of the pride. Further, there is no challenge to these cats. No Ellies, Buffalo or Hippo. No large Hyena packs to hassle them. No hunters, no guns.
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    At what stage during the night did they almost kill the couple?

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