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A lioness watching over her very playful and active bunch of cubs while they are playing tag in front of her.
We came across a bunch of lionesses in the early morning in the Massai Mara. They all had a few little bouncy cubs around them.
But they were not interested in loving or playing activities with their offspring. They looked hungry and their eyes were spying on some easy prey.
The lionesses eventually focused on a bunch of gazelles that were grazing a couple of hundred meters away from us. In perfect routine they stalked upon them, their fur camouflaged in the dry grass, the oldest lioness set off to sprint, then the second one paired up with her, while the others followed them.
It was a close race but the gazelle had the advantage for a split second and so the hunt ended unsuccessful. The lionesses returned, head down and exhausted, to their cubs who waited patiently in the distance.
The little lions jumped up on their mother, welcoming her back, full of excitement and joy. But their mother stayed quite reserved towards them, obviously having her mind still on the task to hunt, to feed her family.
While she stood there with her eyes focusing in the distance, she seemed to be solid like a rock, not even irritated by the frolicking of her offspring and ready to take another try to hunt with full responsibility for her lively cubs.