Defending His Pride A Male Lion Savagely Kills A Spotted Hyena Matriarch & Rips It To Pieces
Lions vs Hyenas….it’s a blood feud that goes back tens of thousands of years…and probably even more than that. The bad blood between lions and hyenas (especially ‘spotted’ hyenas) runs deep, and is one of the most celebrated rivalries in nature. Their bloody and gory competition over carcasses on the African savanna has been memorialized in numerous wildlife documentaries during the last several decades and it’s an ancient rivalry filled with violence and death. There is no quarter asked…and there is none given, it’s kill or be killed and neither side is backing down.
The spotted hyena society is dominated by females and headed by a matriarch. Males often change clans and can belong to more than one clan at the same time. Because male and female spotted hyenas have nearly identical genitalia, they were once thought to be hermaphrodites. They are also sometimes thought to be related to dogs, but are instead cousins to the mongoose, a member of the cat family.
Lions live in groups called prides, which consist of several related adult females and their offspring and several adult male lions unrelated to the females. They are social, affectionate animals, but the faster, leaner female may find that after she has made a kill, the males often move in and take the best meat, leaving only scraps for the female who provided the feast. But, when called-up to defend the pride, the male is always up to the challenge and does so, often with severe savagery.