Hungry eyes

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Africa » South Africa » Mpumalanga » Kruger National Park
September 16th 2014
Published: May 9th 2015
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Lioness on the prowlLioness on the prowlLioness on the prowl

The lioness has gorged herself on impala but is still on the look out for more prey. Photo: Di Robinson
The lioness ambled out of the gully, blood on her fur. She had just fed, but her greedy amber eyes indicated she wanted more. She padded towards her jeep, muscles rippling beneath golden fur, and lay down beside us. I could have touched her. I wanted to stroke her, but did not fancy returning home minus an arm.

Lions know they are the boss. They have an arrogance and self-assurance that is enviable. I'll never be a lion but maybe one day I can be an elephant, at peace in my environment and knowing I'm worth something.

It was our last day in Balule Nature Reserve, and on this early morning drive we followed a pride of lions to where they had just finished ripping an impala apart and were resting in a tree-choked canyon. See the vid.

Aren't they gorgeous?

Back at the lodge, it was breakfast time and I went to the room to deposit some stuff, accidentally leaving the door ajar when I left. After the usual delicious fare, I went back to where we were staying to find a vervet monkey departing through the open entranceway, clutching packets of sugar in
Sugar thiefSugar thiefSugar thief

Cheeky vervet monkesy will steal packets of sugar from your lodge room if you leave the door open, as I did. They are also extremely cute and endearing creatures. Photo: Matt Feierabend
their little hand. They scampered up a nearby tree and looked defiantly down.

Inside, individually-wrapped coffees and teas were littered on the floor from where the thief had rifled through them in their search for glucose. Otherwise, no damage. Relief plus.

I was sad to leave Greater Kruger National Park. I'm planning to return to South Africa, which has its hooks firmly implanted in me, in October this year on the way home from England where I'll be seeing my mum and dad.

In the meantime, I've written three hub pages on this amazing place which are all fun in their different ways:

Find out which Big 5 animal you are by doing the quiz on this page
• Inspired to go to Kruger after my blurbs? Info on getting there, accommodation and everything else you need to know.
• Amazing facts about record-breaking animals and birds of Kruger. Watch the video below first then discover more .

Republic of Congo next. Western-lowland gorillas in one of the most pristine places on Earth. Watch this space.


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