Thursday, November 20, 2014

Two Collared Lions Mating Near Campi Ya Kanzi

Recent lion sightings near Campi ya Kanzi have given our safari guests an intimate look at collared lions Namunyak and Lorpolosie as they attempt to start a family.  The pair are in full-fledged mating mode as the short rains of November summon lush, green growth in the Chyulus.  Both Namunyak and Lorpolosie wear unobtrusive tracking collars that allow the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust to monitor their movements.  They have been spotted together on several occasions in the same area, sometimes in the company of two additional adult females.  Head guide Stefano Ricci snapped some stellar photographs of the lions as they enjoyed a leisurely morning in the sun.

Lorpolosie is a magnificent, ten-year-old male who covers a vast territory between the Chyulu Hills
and Amboseli National Park.  It is a rare treat to see him so close to Campi ya Kanzi.

Lorpolosie was collared by MWCT one year ago in November 2013.  After two weeks, however,
the collar stopped working properly and could no longer be tracked by satellite.

Today, the MWCT conservation team successfully replaced Lorpolosie's collar with a new one.
Collars help researchers to gather important information that aids lion conservation efforts.
Collars do not harm lions or interfere with their daily activities.

Lorpolosie has an impressive two-tone mane that is gold on top and dark brown on the bottom.
This is a distinguishing trait that has become relatively uncommon among lions.

Watch out for those teeth!

Namunyak (right) is a four-year-old female who was collared in November 2013.
Her name means "blessing" or "lucky one" in Maa, the language of the Maasai.

Namunyak and Lorpolosie have been spending time with two other adult females.

Namunyak is a regular resident of the area surrounding Campi ya Kanzi.
Our guests frequently have the opportunity to see her in the wild.

Namunyak's female companions, like this beauty, may also be looking to mate soon.

Namunyak and Lopolosie have been inseparable for the last few days.
Lions have a very intense mating ritual in which they copulate 20-40 times per day
for a period of several days, sometimes even forgoing food.

If Namunyak gets pregnant, she will give birth in 3-4 months.
This would mark her debut as a mother.  Cross your fingers for cubs!

No comments:

Post a Comment