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following the Mapogo Pride

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sabine's picture
Joined: Oct 4 2006
following the Mapogo Pride

Auntie Lyn thought it would be a good idea to have one thread where all information regarding the Mapogo Pride aka Mapogo Mafia could be gathered. Please add your findings here and we can keep track of this impressive coalition.


edited by Katja to add:

Please post only information and questions about the Mapogo Pride in this topic.

Chat and other off topic posts will be moved to another forum or deleted.


Lea's picture
Joined: Apr 28 2007

What a fun time I had reading your story.  Thank you for sharing.



joasjohannesburg's picture
Joined: Sep 9 2013

thanks for all the great info

Iceage (not verified)
Iceage's picture




Iceage (not verified)
Iceage's picture

Mrs van Heerden got a Mapogo on her  photocamera!

A ghost in the dark she called him.


She tells us this story meeting one of the  mapogo's !


She says:->


We had met the (nowadays) Mlowathi Male Lions during our previous visits to Mala Mala. They used to be called 'The Mapochos' (the Devils) as they formed a brotherhood of 5 big adult Males and as such were sheer invincible. They were seen bringing down huge prey such as rhino. On numerous occasions they have killed other lions; both male as female as well as many cubs. They have no fear .. and it shows.

This year's visit, 2 encounters with 2 of the brothers had a huge impact on me;

The first encounter was with both Males. It was already pitch dark and apparently the smell of a willing lioness was in the air. They were sizing each other up in order to determine who would be the lionesses’ date. There was restlessness and aggression in the air. At one moment we found ourselves situated between the two impressive males. One started roaring. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard a Lion’s roar up close but I can tell you it is heart stopping; especially from 3 meters away. Your whole body vibrates with those deep thunderous tones. Then the other male answered the call with his own roar. Those haunting roars, coming from both sides, as close as that, is a sound I’ll never forget.. (picture above is one of the brothers on that particular night).

On the second occasion, a couple of days later, ranger Dean and I had gone out during the heat of the day to try and photograph Giant Kingfishers. When after 5 minutes we stumbled upon a big herd of elephants playing and frolicking in the Sand River, the Kingfishers were forgotten Smiling

After a while a message came in through the radio; The ‘Mohawk” Mlowathi Male was seen at the airstrip in the company of an Ayrfield Pride Lioness.. So we went to have a look.
We found them in thick bush heading towards the river. The other brother had clearly been defeated in the fight over the favours of the female and waited a bit further away. The 2 lovers went off together and we followed them as best as we could until they stopped on the sloping riverbed. Dean parked the big Landrover in front of them and we waited..

All of a sudden the 2 big lions stood up to have a drink in the puddle right next to the landrover. Nothing out of the ordinary in Mala Mala until the huge Mapocho suddenly turned and stepped towards the (entirely open – not even a door) Landrover until he almost touched Dean’s foot, constantly staring at us with those huge yellow eyes. His whole body all muscle and clearly aggressively demanding privacy. And the stare lasted.. and lasted… And you know, so well, it would only take one lash with that giant paw…

I can’t even begin to describe what goes through you in such a moment. Pure fear is probably the closest. Dean explained later that he didn’t want to start the motor as the sound might have startled the Lion, which would have made it even more dangerous. Also he wanted to stand ground as he didn't want to teach the Lion that cars were 'to be intimidated'. Later on he said bravely that he was only waiting for the clicking of my camera to save the moment for eternity. Yeah right.. I’m quite sure that he also had nothing else in his mind than survival.. (I was so completely scared s.t that I totally forgot to press that shutter!).
The Status Quo lasted and lasted and someone had to do something to clear the tension.. In the end Dean did start the engine and we backed off a little which made the Mapocho turn and join his lady… Guess he won the staring contest...




Iceage (not verified)
Iceage's picture

Got This on email.. I dont know who took the picture and were it was taken..

But it shows even the Mapogo lions can relax.

Picture re-sized by moderator


If any of you have some stories and information about  the lion prides currently walking in the area please sent it to me.

Especially the Windmill pride.

Thank You!





Iceage (not verified)
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Oktober 4 some off the mapogo's killed a Buffalo in the water of the sandriver. Unknown which members they are. Next day 1 mapogo returned to the killed buff.

Picture's and an article are here->





Iceage (not verified)
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* edit  *  (sorry)











Iceage (not verified)
Iceage's picture

Hey all.

Sandy Patch lioness has been seen lately! First with 3 cubs , but she did loose 2.. But we have seen her at Djuma lately with one cub.. We all hoped Sandy would join a pride ! Together with the only surviving (shot) Sandriver.

Sadly the Sandriver didnt make it... But as far as i know Sandy Patch did and is OK.

Ive seen Sandy Patch and 1 cub some days  ago.  She Looked very well!

I can be corrected if i gave some wrong info..

KMello wrote:

Three of the Mapogos were seen at Djuma this past week feeding on a buffalo.  A couple of days later, the Sandy Patch female( I believe some refer to here as Garbo in the chat forums)  was also feeding on the buffalo kill with the Mapogos.  She appeared to be lactating, but no cubs were seen.  I wonder what the break down is?  It has to be a Mapogo father of course, right?

Iceage (not verified)
Iceage's picture

OK Old (2008)  ... but its all about the mapogo's!  Photo 2 (the 5 mapogo's together drinking)

Photo 1 is the Sandriver cubs. (sad story)...

(once they were kittens also) Smiling here kittie kittie... Purrrrrrr purrrrrrrr





Aquila (not verified)
Iceage's picture

Adding in another tidbit of info about the Mapogo/Eyrefield males.  As of Sept. 1, 2009, Mala Mala has renamed the two youngest Eyrefield Males.  They are now known on Mala Mala as the Mlowathi Males.   This is due to them establishing territory in Mala Mala for quite some time now.  These two are also known as Kinky Tail and Mr T.


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