Young Travel Writers 2015

Isabella White, 9

Last updated 23rd July 2022

Author: Isabella White
Age: 9

We left our camp and started our safari.  After we had seen a few gazelles and buffalo we saw a cluster of jeeps gathered around, looking at something so we decided to investigate.

Our guide, Richard, found us a good space among the cars and we saw a large lioness sitting near a zebra carcass that had been killed earlier that morning.

The lioness was quite big, a lot bigger than I had expected.  She had a long elegant body which moved gracefully as she walked on her sharp, clawed feet.  Her head was small compared to the rest of her body and perched on top of her head were some delicate dainty ears.  Below her ears were a pair of sparkling amber eyes which shone in the early morning sun.

Soon enough vultures started circling in from the sky.  When there were about 30 or 40 vultures a few meters away from the carcass, the vultures started creeping towards it.  When the lioness turned around all the vultures froze in their tracks!  This happened about 5 of 6 times and by the end we were in hysterics because they looked like they were playing grandmothers footsteps.

When the lioness had had enough of chasing the vultures away, out came two adorable, cute lion cubs.  The lion cubs were a sandier colour than their mother which made them look even cuter.  Their tiny paws moved swiftly across the grass as they attempted to chase the sneaky, greedy vultures away.  The cubs succeeding in chasing the vultures away a few times but the cheeky vultures kept sneaking back towards the carcass.

While all this had been going on more and more vultures had been circling in from all around to join in the carcass feast.  When there about 70 or 80 vultures (we counted!) the two cubs twitched their ears before giving up and returning to the bushes, probably for a rest.

We were all expecting the lioness to reappear but we were wrong.  Out of the bushes emerged a muscular, powerful male lion.  As he walked you could see the muscles in his thick legs.  His face was the most stunning part of him.  His deep golden eyes shimmered in the sun and most of his ears were covered by a long shaggy golden mane that hung around his muscly shoulders.

When the vultures saw the magnificent male lion they stopped pecking at the carcass and looked at the lion anxiously.  Then the lion started jogging towards the vultures.  The vultures ran or flew away, but not too far.  This happened about 4 or 5 times and we even heard the male lion roar (but it wasn’t that loud!).  We thought it was like grandmothers footsteps.

In the end, the powerful lion surrendered and let the confident vultures peck at the carcass and have their frantic feast.

I really enjoyed watching this amazing spectacle and I felt like I was watching a nature programme on television!