Baboon Steals a Lion Cub



This is the incredible and never-before-seen moment a male baboon stole a lion cub and starts grooming it, while it is alive and healthy.

Image by Kurt Safari Company

Kurt Schultz, from Kurt Safari, captured this once in a lifetime sighting on Saturday the 1st of Feb 2020 while on his way back from a meeting in the Kruger National Park.

Here is how he told the story:

“I had a meeting at Skukuza, one of the camps, for Kurt Safari on Saturday, so I was in the Kruger for the morning. Before the meeting, I decided to enter the park early to do some photography – a hobby and passion of mine.”

“I drove onto the S21, one of the roads near Skukuza where I came across a troop of baboons being restless. Being early morning this is relatively common, but then I noticed a baboon carrying something and the rest of the troop were interested in that baboon. The baboon was not visible and I spent some time at the sighting as I was told it was possibly a lion cub.”

“Knowing the area, I know there are cubs present in the area lately and being early morning, and close to a granite rock face, I suppose the baboon troop rested during the evening on the rocks. They probably during the early morning moved down to start their day foraging for food came across the hidden Lion cub.”


“I first thought it was a female baboon but it was in actuality a young male baboon. The young baboon crossed the road and climbed up a marula tree. I waited for about 30 min before it came into view and was moving from tree to tree, the rest of the troop then moved away and the baboon was grooming and caring for the lion cub as if this was a young baboon.”

“I spent about 1 hour at the sighting and decided to leave as I had a meeting at 9 am. It is normal for a troop of baboons to kill young leopard and even lion, however after 20 years of guiding this is the first time I have seen a baboon nurturing and caring for a young predator cub.”

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