Has Phyre left the pride to make a den?

3 10 2011

Sisters can sometimes quarrel with each other, fighting for attention or dominance.  However, this has never seemed to be a problem with twins Nala and Narnia, as they are practically glued at the hip.  It is rarer to see the N’s apart than together – in fact, they spend most of the day within a metre of each other.  Lately they have been strengthening this sisterly bond through intense, long grooming sessions; sometimes lasting for 10 or more minutes.  As both lionesses are low in the ranks of the pride they are not often groomed by the other more senior members of the group, so is it nice to see that they look out for each other in this respect.

The N’s are also the most playful of the adult lions; they make great aunties for AT1.  Lately, the cub has been practising her stalking techniques out on the sleeping Nala.  On Friday (30 September) AT1 was seen tactfully using the cover of a small shrub to sneak up on the unaware lioness and pounce on her head!  Most members of the group would be rather annoyed about being woken up from their slumber in this way, but being such a fantastic aunt that she is, Nala gave back as good as she got, as she play-bit AT1 and biffed her gently in a pretend fight.

The researchers have been getting excited these past few days.  Probably-pregnant Phyre and Kenge were found early in the morning resting together by themselves in Hwange on Friday (30 September), but when the researchers came back to see them just before leaving the site for breakfast, they could not locate them.  In fact, both lionesses escaped their radar for the rest of the day.  It was assumed that maybe the lionesses have decided to go and find a den to have cubs; both females are right in the window for expected gestation length to give birth at any time now, if they did in fact successfully conceive..  However, by Saturday morning (1 October) Kenge was spotted walking up Route 66 behind Nala and AT1.  It seems like she has decided that it’s not quite the right time for her to den just yet, but as Phyre was still absent for the entire day, the researchers hope that she has found herself a nice and secluded spot to give birth.   Watch this space!




One response

3 10 2011
Joyce Kinton

Its very exciting now, for Phyre seems to be looking for a nice quiet place to give birth….in peace !!
OH may fortune shin upon you Phyre and you produce your little ones and that they will grow without any harm….
Looking for the news on her..xx

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