Malaika’s family feeding habits

Efficiency and strategies of hunting depend on the animals’ personal features (their number, age, physiological status, personal experience) and environmental conditions (landscape, weather, availability and type of prey). Malaika, who has always been efficient hunter, is turning the age of 11 and sometimes has to rely on her 18-months old cubs in getting food. However, her two sons are not very cooperative. Often only one member of the family gets a small prey and does not share it with others. Sometimes, if Malaika gets nothing from her offspring, she takes down a bigger prey to feed all the family. Sometimes, she takes her chance to catch a small animal (hare or fawn) and eat it alone, encouraging cubs to hunt. For the few last days, Malaika was sharing the area with a lonely male Mugi, and their meeting was a matter of time. In the evening Malaika chased an adult Tompson gazelle male, but missed it. However, when we reached the spot, where she had stopped, we found 4 cheetahs, and among them Mugi. He was circling around Malaika, who was greedily eating a small fawn. In a few minutes they both were feeding from the same carcass and finished it within 10 minutes. Both adults were calm and confident, which could indicate their possible previous encounters and absence of danger from either side. Moreover, behavior of the male and his presence directly at the prey, could be a sign of her kleptoparasiting from his kill. Cubs were curious and impatient; they did not get any food that evening but a lot of impressions.