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Life is Not Easy on the Serengeti, Part Six: Jaws of Death

JAWS OF DEATH 11:30 am

cheetah, jaws of lifeRegrouped, and re-invigorated now after their unsuccessful attempt at thwarting the young wildebeest into their powerful jaws.  Seemingly, the cheetah’s boundless energy is now re-focused on a young wildebeest trotting along with its mother, apart from the safety of the larger herd.  Their eyes dart first to the approaching herd, then to the mother and baby, each keeping an eye on the approaching target and the possibility of any obstacles.

The mother and baby approach; the herd seems to stagger onto another path leaving the mother and baby vulnerable as they wander closer and closer to the cheetah.  We lose sight of one cheetah while focusing on the other one. The cheetah seems to key in on the mom and baby with determined focus and  concentration.

The mother and baby are now within our naked eyesight, and well within the cheetahs grasp. One cheetah springs into action, as the mom and baby wildebeest pass by him; all four legs now in the air, the cheetah is in serious pursuit of his next meal.  In stealthy pursuit, he trips the baby with his paw, the baby takes a backwards tumble, and the cheetah is holding the baby down.  The mother stops, realizing the cheetah has the baby pinned down, jaws to his throat. Her baby is now caught in the Jaws of Life or will it be the Jaws of Death?.  Can the baby free himself, can mom get the baby released, can she save her baby?

cheetah, wildebeestRight now, it’s not looking so good for the mom, she is stressed, unsure of what to do next.  Fighting off two cheetah is probably not something she can do. She will get killed herself. There is only one cheetah now, the other one is still eyeing the herd perhaps focused on his own meal.  This gives mom more of an opportunity to fend off the cheetah and help rescue her baby.  She has only moments to accomplish this.

Suddenly, the mother seems to have inched closer while we are watching the drama, and charges the cheetah. The cheetah fights with the baby as the baby struggles to free himself from the jaws of this cheetah.  The mom continues to badger the cheetah.  Within moments, the cheetah becomes distracted as the mother continues to prod.  In the process of trying to push the mom away the cheetah lets go of the baby, but the other cheetah still is not in the immediate distance.

cheetah, wildebeest The mother continues prodding the cheetah, which continues to be a distraction, to the cheetah.  The baby, if not severely hurt yet, might be able to get up.  Once the cheetah releases his jaws to tackle the mother, the baby who was caught in the jaws of life is now free, and appears to be unharmed. The baby struggles upright, the mother carefully moves around, away from the cheetah’s jaws and paws, as she risks her own life.  The cheetah may easily jump on mom now and grab her at the throat.  She must be very careful. She continues to dance around the cheetah and nudges the baby. The cheetah is definitely miffed, feeling his meal slip away. The baby struggles upright, falls back down, tries again and does.  The cheetah seems dazed, distracted and in disbelief.  Just as the cheetah turns his head towards the baby, who has now gotten upright, and the mother out of distance of the cheetah’s jaws, both trot off on the plains of the Serengeti.  The cheetah is left, out of breath, hungry and unable to pursue them.  So goes life on the plains of the Serengeti.

Now tell me, after several attempts at trying to corner their meal and take it down, did you expect that ending? I did not.

Safari Kay

Read More
Part One – Wildebeest Migration
Part Two – Lion in Wait
Part Three – Cheetah
Part Four – Cheetah
Part Five – Wildebeest/Cheetah

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