In August, I was lucky enough to be one of the first, if not the first, Americans allowed back into Kenya after they reopened from their covid lockdown. While in-country, we traveled to the Olare Motorogi Conservancy in western Kenya: home to massive lions prides and where the Big Cat Diaries is filmed. There, we spotted a juggernaut 17-member pride of lions throwing a Flesh Eater’s Ball for their guest of honor, a woe begotten wildebeest.
The Flesh Eater’s Ball, when thrown by adequately famished lions, is a danse-macabre of frenzied of growls, fights (lions will literally fight each other while on a carcass), and an orchestra of bones snapping and ligaments popping.
This blog will spare you the auditory aspects of the Ball, but see below for the visuals.
The lions danced into the night with the now skeletonized wildebeest. In the morning, we swung by the Ball site to see if any of the participants were still getting their boogey on. There were no lions. There were no scavengers. There was no carcass. The only sign that the Ball had ever happened was blood-slicked grass.
As I type, I know that those lions have thrown many a Flesh Eater’s Ball since August; had many a dance partner; perhaps been witnessed by other horrified humans. May their danse-macabre continue on forever more.
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