Have you ever wondered what it would be like to see a wild animal devour his prey in person? Well, I wondered how the experience would be and I’m excited to share my encounter with a leopard nicknamed Mangela who tore off the head of a baby waterbuck for dinner.
The action took place in the Singita concession of Kruger Park. We were riding in the bush spotting impalas when Brian, our ranger got word that Mangela was having dinner. The rangers at Singita have tracked Mangela since it was a baby, hence the formal name. A interesting fact is that once a leopard is born they’re on their own to fend for themselves. The parents don’t take care of them or protect them from danger.
When we arrived to the dinner location I see Mangela perched on a tree branch feasting on the waterbuck. It was interesting to see him focus on the head of the waterbuck licking its head repeatedly before taking his first bite. It looked like a ritually as her repeated licked this face as if he was enjoying the flavor of the waterbucks skin. Once he decided to sink his teeth in you could hear the skull bones breaking.
Eventually the blood started to appear as the waterbucks face disappeared onto Mangela’s palate. It was such an organic and raw experience as we sat 30 feet from the action. Mangela paid us no mind as we obeyed the rules of no loud talking or standing up in the Range Rover. I must say the National Geographic experience is person dwarfs what you see on any TV!
WARNING GRAPHICS PHOTOS ARE BELOW