On September 18, we received a call from a guide at the local lodge. There was a dead lion in the river. Quickly, Flo went find the river and found that it was a year old cub. He found the bullet wound and an incision that removed the heart- we are looking into the significance of this. All other parts of the cub were in tact including the teeth, claw and skin. Flo then compared the cubs location to that of our collared lionesses to determine whether their movements overlapped with the cubs location and found a match. It was Shishatiya!
Shishatiya has been causing lots of problems for villagers over the last few months. First off, she relocated her cubs from the floodplains to an area north of Seronga Village. This is significant because we had not previously recorded lions in this area. Therefore we can confirm that lions use the woodland area between the villages and the Namibian border- which was previously unrecorded! She has since been picking off livestock and training her 4 cubs how to kill them. The villagers understandably have not been happy.
The last time we had seen Shishatiya was over about a month ago and her cubs were all documented. Most of them have survived over a year now, which is quite an accomplishment in this hostile area. As we increase our herder training initiative, we hope that conflicts will be reduced and lions will find other sources of food away from cattle.