Mmegi Online :: Okavango lions ate my camera
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Last Updated
Tuesday 21 August 2018, 18:00 pm.
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Okavango lions ate my camera

The camera was set on blub mode and was meant to shoot the star trails for 20 minutes. After setting up the camera outside my tent, I opened the shutter and let it to start shooting.
By Thalefang Charles Fri 18 Aug 2017, 15:48 pm (GMT +2)


Okavango star trails
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The camera was set up before the lions has the last laugh by chewing the device (right) PIC: THALEFANG CHARLES
Mmegi Online :: Okavango lions ate my camera








About 10 minutes later I got into the tent to paint it with light so that it could be visibly lit in the picture. After few minutes I heard the camera fall down, initially I thought it was the wind, so I got off and checked. And that’s when I saw them, three lions munching on my camera.

I slowly went back inside the tent. And hearing the crunching of the lions on my camera broke my heart. It was like hearing beasts killing your child. So I did what every parent would do, I tried to scare the lions away. Scaring the lions away sounds like a silly idea now but I did what I had to do.

I decided to use a familiar sound to the lions so I shouted like a baboon. I believed this would be very effective thinking that human shout might be a very bad idea. After about four baboon boos I peeped outside to check if lions have fled and left my baby, but there was a lion right on my tent door. It was a juvenile male, probably curious about this weird blue-lit baboon.

 The lion looked right at me, its eyes shining on my torchlight. It honestly looked like a charming big fluffy cat, not as scary as television lions. I was holding a big knife inside the tent and I had some false sense of safety on my sharp instrument.

And for a moment there, I thought what language do lions understand, should I shout, “Go!” or “tswa ha!” or “kwenda!” or “voetsek!” I decided on the Baboon language, so I shouted more Baboon boos, this time deeper and scarier like a big defiant baboon. Some camp mates came to the rescue and helped to drive the lions away but the young jungle kings simply fled away with my camera and dropped it off about 100 metres away from our camp.

From the wrecked camera I got my picture of the star trails. Camera: Canon 7D Mark II. Picture metadata: Exposure 1024 seconds. F/8. ISO 800.

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