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Lioness Befriends Baby Antelope After Killing Its Mother In Uganda (PHOTOS)

It's not often in the wild that an antelope turns from prey to a member of the pride, but that's exactly what happened recently at Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda.

Photographer Adri De Visser captured photos of the amazing sight when a lioness befriended a baby Uganda Kob after killing its mother. In the photo series, the lioness seemingly adopts the baby antelope, nuzzling it and picking it up by the scruff of its neck.

De Visser got word of two lions feeding on a kill and went to take photos of the scene when he discovered the heartwarming moment. After feeding on the carcass of the Uganda Kob, the lioness retreated to the shade of a nearby tree to rest. Moments later, the antelope's offspring popped out from its hiding spot in the tall grass.

The two animals took some time to warm up to each other -- De Visser estimates about 45 minutes -- but the lioness eventually let down her guard and befriended the calf. When a park ranger appeared on a motorbike the lioness picked up the impala like she would her own and carried it away. Other tourists to the park reported seeing the baby Kob unharmed later, after the photos were taken, according to The Daily Mail.

This interspecies friendship may be rare, but it's not entirely unheard of. In 2002, a Kenyan lioness named Kamuniak, meaning "the blessed one," adopted at least five baby antelopes throughout the year.

While the antelope might appear to be in greater danger than the lioness in the photos, Uganda Kobs (Kobus kob thomasi) as a species are listed as "least concern" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Lions (Panthera leo) are currently listed as "vulnerable" due to "indiscriminate killing (primarily as a result of retaliatory or pre-emptive killing to protect life and livestock) and prey base depletion."
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Responses to " PHOTOS: Lioness Befriends Baby Antelope "

  1. Anonymous says:

    The last picture looks not very befriended.... :-(

  2. mmm agreed on that last photo.. not very befriended at all ... :-((

  3. Anonymous says:

    Ohhhh...very uncomfortable with this..and these pic's..poor little thing..nature is so cruel..it's obvious the baby wouldn't survive without it's mother..and that it was only a matter of time before the lioness killed it. Very sad..

  4. Anonymous says:

    I can tell she is killing the calf ...so sad but natures ways.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Can you people not read? It said she was seen with the calf even after these pics taken... a mother housecoat camper look pretty malicious just carrying her kittens, and I'm sure this was awkward for the lioness. No posted an article about watching a. Lion chomp a baby, this HAD a different message!

  6. Anonymous says:

    ↑Mother HOUSE-CAT ↑... stupid autocorrect....

  7. Anonymous says:

    You're right anon. I mean look at the fact that her claws are sheathed! In saying that, the calf probably won't last, but it's the thought that counts hehe.

  8. H0WARD says:

    just read, guys

    When a park ranger appeared on a motorbike the lioness picked up the impala like she would her own and carried it away. Other tourists to the park reported seeing the baby Kob unharmed later, after the photos were taken, according to The Daily Mail.

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