Dead lion mystery is solved

You will probably remember the story of our collared female lion Nemasi and her 3 male cubs. Here is Nemasi and her cubs in March 2008.


In February we were very sad to come across a dead sub-adult lion on the side of a hill called Olasera. A herder had found the carcass while looking after his goats on the hillside. The lion had been dead for too long for us to identify who it was, or how it had died, but we suspected that it might have been one of Nemasi’s cubs.


It was possible that the cub had been killed by the male lion Lentim who had been spending time with Nemasi, and who is not the father of the cubs. Here are two of the cubs feeding in July 2008.


We spent a long time looking for Nemasi and her cubs so that we could see how many youngsters she had with her. One day we saw Nemasi with Lentim in the lava, but there were no cubs in sight. The Lion Guardians in the area kept finding tracks of 2 sub adults along with Nemasi’s tracks, so it was becoming more and more likely that it was one of hers that had died. But Nemasi remained elusive, hiding out in the lava, and never coming out so we couldn’t be certain about many offspring she had.

Last week we finally caught up with Nemasi, who was with her sub-adults out in an open area. Sadly she was only with two offspring. The dead lion on the hillside must have been one of hers. But the two remaining sub-adults were looking very well. They are both male, and are almost as big as Nemasi now! Here is the first of the male sub-adults:


And here is the second:


There is a huge amount of prey available for them at the moment, as there are so many weak animals around because of the drought, and the area that they were resting in was littered with wildebeest and zebra carcasses. They were certainly well fed, and very handsome! We can’t wait to see how these two young males develop, and where they will roam when they are old enough to leave Nemasi.


Keep reading the blog to find out! And, as always, thank you so much for your donations, without which we would not be able to continue to study and protect these amazing animals.


  • Joy says:

    Lovely pictures! I love the spots on the belly of the young lion!

  • sauwah says:

    it’s sad that the cub was killed by a male; but at least the cub was not poisoned nor killed by people. and the two sub adults are so handsome! let’s hope the rain will return soon and bring much needed moisture to the very thirsty land, animals alike. then the grazers can raise the next generations too.

  • Joanne - UK says:

    Thanks for the update. Its great to see the remaining two looking so plumped up with full bellies!

  • Annie says:

    That has always puzzled me why the males would do that…….poor lil fella…at least two are doing well!

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