rhinos tree the southern pride

Another early start and the first sighting was that of the Southern Pride all lazing in the grass. Only three were visible and even after explaining to the guests that there were actually 14 lions there they did not believe me. It was only when a herd of waterbuck came running past did the rest of the lions lift their heads to see what the commotion was all about. The guests all gasped, as the size of the pride became known.

We sat and watched as the pride settled down to sleep, but their sleep was cut short by a crash of rhino, 6 strong, as they came wandering up towards the sleeping lions and with scent of the predators filling their nostrils they started snorting their displeasure at the proximity of the cats. The rhinos decided to put their combined weight together and formed a line and came rushing in at the lions.

lions while on safari at sabi sabi private game reserve

lions chased into tree by rhino

The Southern Pride was sent scattering in all directions looking for safety but being an open area the only place to go was up. The lions all started climbing into the trees, others opting to run as far away as possible. The rhinos knew they had the advantage and circled the trees, snorting and growling looking for a target to run at. One of the cubs had taken refuge under a fallen over tree and the rhinos were all around trying to get in there.

lions in a tree

Eventually the rhinos moved off to carry on their day feeling very proud of themselves for humbling the king of the jungle. What an incredible sighting of amazing animal interaction.

lions in a tree while on safari

by: Richard de Gouveia (Little Bush Camp ranger)
Images by: Darred Joubert (Earth Lodge ranger)


  1. sheila says

    What an ‘edge of your seat’ sighting. It’s wonderful to be able to visit and go on drives through your blogs. Thank you.

  2. patty says

    Thanks Richard. Having just returned home, it was a delight to view the Southern Pride again–and in such an incredible predicament. Looking forward to receiving pictures from our time with you and Brett.

    • ranger rich says

      I am so glad that you guys enjoyed your time with us Patty! Great hearing from you so soon and hope that we will be hearing a lot more from you! Have a great day!

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