Guvu’s Dynasty: Can You Feel the Love Tonight?


Whatever the day, whatever the year, Lion King premiere imminent or not, there is NO bad time to hear about the arrival of lion cubs. How amazing to report SIX baby lions! I do however, think real credit for their story and this circle of life goes to Guvu, the matriarch of our pride and pride of Anabezi home territory. It is after all through her effort and determination that we can announce a family now 14 strong: three males, Guvu, her two daughters, two sons and six new cubs!

Guvu’s story is a remarkable one: from the scattered lion population across the Lower Zambezi National Park, this single lioness, named for an almost pregnancy like abscess on her side has managed against all odds to build her pride. When the three big maned lions (Blackie, Brown and Ginger – or as I call him, Roger Taylor – for both the hair and the catitude) arrived on the scene from Zimbabwe several years ago, she hid her two young female cubs from their predatory advances until they’d reached maturity and came into oestrus, ensuring their survival and the possibility and now ultimate result of further progeny. She also bore two males in November last year, who are now sizeable and well on their way to adulthood. We are, of course, wary of being too celebratory in their arrival until they have grown further and are more fully able to defend themselves from potential predators, unfortunately in the bush, we must always be prepared…

Guvu’s now adult daughters, we have called Chipo and Chipengu, two names but the same meaning: a blessing, or a gift, especially to our fledgling pride. Having suspected for some weeks that they might have been pregnant, we were finally rewarded with incredible sightings of their combined SIX cubs over the last few days, now that they are old enough to leave the thicket in which they were hidden away from prying eyes and predation… Hakuna Matata though, they seem happy enough and Mufasa than ever, still tiny and Simba-ly adorable, playing in the dust, bothering mum, aunt and Granny Guvu, busy exploring, lured by natural curiosity and feline on top of the world (or standing on a sleeping dad as the case may well be)…

We thoroughly look forward to reporting the latest antics of this magnificent and rapidly growing pride - stay tuned to hear the latest on these beautiful cats, but for now it seems that in the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lions sleep tonight!

Written by Tara Vivian-Neal

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