Animal sighting: an innocent baby impala approaches a male lion

In a turn of events, an innocent baby impala approaches a man lion and experiences his first – and last – encounter with an apex predator.

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This animal sighting was captured by Sylvie Failletaz on an early morning game drive near Nyamepi Campground, Mana Pools, Zimbabwe.

Click on HERE for all pictures.

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Failletaz told the story to LatestSightings.com.

“The day started very hot, with morning temperatures reaching 25 degrees Celsius. Not far from camp, we came across two male lions that had eaten an adult impala the night before. They were doing what lions usually do… sleeping and lazing around.

“After taking a few photos and looking at them for a while, we decided to wait a bit longer. The sun’s rays were starting to peek over the horizon, and it was getting brighter and brighter. With such a morning hot, we were hoping the lions would get warm in the sun and get some shade – that way we could see something other than sleeping lions.

“Then suddenly and unexpectedly a baby impala started wandering and ran straight towards the male lion. I was thinking no, no, no, go away, wrong move! We couldn’t believe the baby impala was heading towards a male lion. I really thought the impala would turn around as soon as he realized there was danger, but he didn’t. The baby looked so lost and so innocent that he obviously didn’t know what the lion was, it was probably his first and last encounter.

“He came right next to the sleeping lion and almost touched him. I was hoping he would run away when he realized it wasn’t mum. We were hoping the lion wouldn’t be interested in such a small snack since he had eaten the day before.

“The lion slowly lifted his head and looked at the baby impala. Then he straightened up quickly, with this extremely funny look on his face, like: wait, what did I see? Did I am dreaming? The food came to me? I love the face, the “cartoon eyes”.

“Then the action started, it happened so fast! The male lion seemed very slow at first but then made an effort and grabbed the baby impala who had no chance. I couldn’t find the angle to follow the pursuit because our car turned around and the wrong way. Unfortunately I also had the wrong lens on my camera so I missed the action and felt quite disappointed. However, I captured a few snaps that tell the story of what happened.

“It was the first time that we witnessed a chase from start to finish! I felt very lucky and privileged to see such a sighting in the wild during the day with such beautiful lighting. However, I felt sorry for the super cute baby impala. I would have liked a happy ending for that, but unfortunately it wasn’t his day. Nature can be cruel and there are no rules in nature.

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