Friday, 3 December 2010

Sohebele Pride (Deceased)

Name: The Sohebele Pride were named after the Sohebele Riverbed that winds its way through the eastern and northern parts of the Timbavati, and formed part of the central region of the Sohebele Pride’s territory.

Current Pride Composition: There are no females left from this pride, and the only remaining members of the pride are the three adolescent males born to the pride in August 2006. At their peak, the pride consisted of 9 members; 1 adult male (Sohebele male), 2 adult females, 4 cubs born in August 2006, and 2 cubs born in March 2007. Sadly, within 9 months, all four lionesses were killed, the old Sohebele male died, and by early 2010, only the three young male lions were left, and they moved out of the area, effectively ending the reign of the Sohebele Pride.

Territory: The Sohebele Pride were the resident pride of the northern Timbavati, and made up more than 80 percent of the lodges lion sightings from 2006 – 2009, especially after the birth of the 6 cubs that anchored the pride to the area almost permanently, and they were on the property for 90 percent of their time, and were found almost daily. Their activities centred on the central region of our traversing area, and they were most frequently viewed on Peru, Java, Jaydee and Vielmetter. To the east, they would move onto Karans, Scholtz, and even into the Kruger National Park; in the west they would pop into the Klaserie from time to time, but seldom for more than a couple of days at a time. To the north, the pride would occasionally visit the area around the lodge, De Luca to the north-east, the property of Argyle was visited en route to Ingwelala which the pride frequented as the cubs got older. To the south, the pride would also venture into the Machaton Prides territory when they moved as far south as Kings Property.

(click on map for larger view)
Male: For the latter part of their existence, the pride were male-less, as the Sohebele male seemingly abandoned the pride at the end of 2008, only being see with them once in mid-2009 before himself dying. He had been the pride male for most of the pride’s existence, but faced challengers as he got older. The two Klaserie Males began mating with the Sohebele lionesses in the beginning of 2009, and they sired a litter of cubs with them in April 2009. Following this, and the arrival of the Mahlathini males into the area, these latter males set about chasing the pride and killing off the females; a rather strange habit! Although these Mahlathini males were seen mating with the last remaining Sohebele lioness in October 2009, less than 4 weeks later, they killed her.

In addition to the Sohebele pride male, the Sohebele pride had three young male lions born into the pride in August 2006. These males were constantly chased around by the new males looking to take over the pride and miraculously survived all of the attacks on the pride, and following the loss of all four pride lionesses, found themselves as the only remaining Sohebele lions and moved out of the area, effectively ending the reign of the Sohebele pride.

Females: At its peak, the pride consisted of two mature lionesses, and two sub adult lionesses. In the space of 9 months, all four lionesses were killed by other lions. In June 2009 the first adult lioness was killed by the Mahlathini males, then the 3-year old lioness was killed by the Timbavati males in July 2009, followed by the second (and last) adult lioness in November 2009 when she was killed by the Mahlathini males. Finally in March 2010, the youngest and last lioness of the pride was killed by the Xakubasa lionesses when she attempted to scavenge off a giraffe carcass of theirs.

Cubs: in August 2006, 4 cubs were born to the smaller of the lionesses (three males and one female), and this was followed by 2 female cubs born to the other lioness in March 2007. One female was suspected to have had cubs in December 2008, but nothing materialised from this, and the litter born in late April 2009, just off our north-western boundary, were abandoned after the one of the lionesses was killed by the Mahlathini males.

Neighbouring Prides: The Sohebele pride occupied the central region of Motswari’s traversing, and as a result, this kept most of their neighbours on the periphery of the reserve. To the north, it was the Jacaranda Pride; to the north-west it was the Timbavati Pride; to the west it was the Voel Dam Pride; in the south-west it was the Ross Pride; to the south it was the Machaton Pride; to the east it was the old Mayumbuya Pride.

Story: The last three years of this pride’s existence was some story!

Interesting News:

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