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Maternal Love 1copy | by James Currie
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Maternal Love 1copy

Driving along the wild outback of Africa, on a cold fresh March morning, fresh Lion tracks seemed to lead us in circles, and it took us a good few hours to find them, hiding in some bankrupt bushes. We followed the lions to a watering hole and several loud growls from the mother, towards the cub where greeted with an aggressive slap across the face from her protective mother. James was in South Africa's Entabeni game reserve, training to be a game ranger. On that morning i took a couple of hundred photographs of this cub playfully jumping, hiding and trying to stalk birds, but out of all them this tender moment between a mother and her cub is one of my favourites. A fresh deep cut on the cubs face show's that this protective mother isn't always that protective, and having a few weeks before seen this mother with two cubs, we knew that she had killed her other cub. The life expectancy of any animal cubs is never very high, and in predators as well their life expectancy as cubs is often reduced because of other predators such as Spotted Hyeanas and Wild Dogs, and the mothers or fathers of Lion cubs killing and eating cubs is a major factor towards the chances of lion cubs not reaching adulthood.

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Taken on March 8, 2011