A lion apparently had had enough of a cheetah hanging around a South African airstrip – and gave chase. (Watch the video below.)
The impromptu stop-and-start race was more comedic than competitive.
Mala Mala Game Reserve ranger Kevan Dobbie, who shared the footage with the wildlife platform Latest sightings Tuesday, said it looked like the cheetah was taunting several lions with a “you can’t catch me” attitude.
It was then that one of the annoyed lions began its pursuit. Each time he accelerated, the young male cheetah responded with a start.
Lions will attack cheetahs on the territory ― but first, they have to catch them. The math is not in favor of the fattest cat. A lion top speed is around 50 mph, while the cheetah – the fastest land animal – can accelerate to 70 mph or more.
The lion probably didn’t have to read the speed difference to know he was being passed. He could be seen giving up on huddled against brush.
Dobbie was moved by the contest.
“In nature, you can never have expectations because nature will amaze you in many ways,” he told Latest Sightings. “I was lucky enough to witness something many people will never see in their lives, and it was an experience I will never forget.”