The most unlikely of battles

14 February 2020 | Stories From The Mara |

On a beautiful October afternoon in the Triangle, Angama Mara guest, Mike Welton from Canada, was on safari with his guide John, when with much excitement they came across a female leopard hunting an impala grazing nearby.

Taking her time for what she thought was the perfect moment, the leopard patiently stalked her prey, but the impala was quick to react and darted away.

Normally, even an attempted leopard kill is a special sighting, but on this particular day, the most unlikely battle was about to take place when John noticed that something else had attracted the big cat’s attention.

The leopard dashed into a nearby bush, emerging a few moments later with a five-metre long African rock python in her jaws – but the python was not going to surrender without putting up a fierce fight.

Leopard attacking python

The most unexpected struggle then ensued, with the leopard and the python both trading the upper hand as the minutes ticked by.

Leopard and python fight

More than once, the python managed to nearly completely coil around the leopard, but eventually it was the leopard that emerged the victor, delivering the mortal death bite.

Leopard on tree stump

Exhausted from the battle, she caught her breath before leaving the snake behind – disappearing to lick her wounds without the energy to enjoy her meal.

(Images courtesy of Mike Welton)

FILED UNDER: Stories From The Mara

AUTHOR: Sue van Winsen

Part of Angama's sales and marketing team with over 16 years’ experience in travel and tourism, Sue has the inside track on what makes the travel industry tick. She is passionate about all-things-African and is an unashamed cat fanatic. When not travelling, she can usually be found cooking in the kitchen.

kiarie kevin
February 19, 2020

exceptional,that was truly a lucky sighting

Alyssa Lapa
February 20, 2020

Oh my goodness, Romi, the leopardess in your story, is a rockstar. I have gathered photos of her walking right next to crocodiles as well. What an amazing cat.

    Nicky Fitzgerald
    February 21, 2020

    We couldn’t agree more – she is beautiful, brave and strong

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