The lioness and the oryx


Registered Senior Member
I suppose this is more related to ethology than humanity, but it's interesting nonetheless.

A lioness in central Kenya has baffled wildlife experts by adopting a baby oryx, a kind of small antelope normally preyed upon by big cats.

Reports say the full-grown lioness came across the oryx two weeks ago in the Samburu Game Reserve, scaring off its mother.

Instead of then attacking the defenceless calf, the lioness adopted the baby, protecting it from other predators, including a leopard.

Extraordinarily, the lioness still allowed the mother oryx occasionally to come and feed her calf before chasing her away. But the rule of the wild ultimately prevailed on Sunday when a male lion attacked and killed the baby oryx while the lioness was sleeping.

Malfunctioning instinct, animal compassion, or rational thought?
Aberrant behavior...

This is highly unusual behavior for animals in the wild, I have heard of a couple of similar instances, but not in a case where one of the animals is the natural predator of the other. This may be a case of animal psychology wherein our lion benefactress/foster parent has sustained some kind of previously undetected imbalance: This lioness is carrying around an identity conflict, we should post this on the parapsychology forum!!:bugeye:
Curious ...

Wonder if the lion who killed the oryx had previously killed the lioness' cubs?

Rather common.