When a cold wind blows
May 20 2013

AS5

AS5

Under wintery and overcast skies the research team discovered the Ngamo pride huddling together to escape a chilly wind that was blowing through the Tree Tops area of the release site. As the wind increased in intensity Phyre led a move towards an area with more dense thickets that might provide some protection from the cold.  

On the way AS4 and AS5 grabbed the opportunity to play, trying to entice mother Ashanti into some good old fashioned foolery. Ashanti, who was clearly not in the mood for such activities pushed her cubs away and continued after Phyre.  A discarded set of bones lying in the cubs’ path caught their attention, and, after giving them a good sniff, each cub selected their bone of choice and ran to catch up with the pride. Their playful manner was contagious and soon KE3 and KE4 joined in, running circles around their aunt Kwali.

AS4 & AS5

AS4 & AS5

Once the pride had found a place to settle AS5 casually strolled into the long grass where visual of the young male was lost.  His position soon became apparent however by the rustle of branches and a brief glimpse of him scrambling around the branches of a tree before he was safely back on the ground.  Nala, who had been observing the youngster, caught the climbing fever and was soon effortlessly up the tree in a heart beat.  Watched by the cubs below Nala scanned the area, maybe to see if any meals were walking past.

Nala

Nala

During all this activity Phyre had decided to move on, closely followed by Kwali and Kenge.  Once Nala had sufficiently scanned the area she made some calculated moves, edging down the tree trunk and back to solid ground, following the other females into the long grass.  AS4 and AS5, were the last to move off, picking up their bones and briskly running to catch up to the increasingly distant pride. Once the pride had settled again, AS4 cleared her bone of any left overs, before snuggling up to her mother and soon fell into a deep slumber.  

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