On Sunday I went on safari into the darkest jungles of Knowsley near Liverpool. This was a big cat shoot organised by the guys at Wild Arena and the day was a birthday gift from my daughter. This was an opportunity to get into the safari park before the general public arrived and we were allowed to walk around instead of staying in cars with windows closed. The main focus of the day was dedicated to photographing the pride of lions. The pride consisted of about twelve including one male, one castrated male called Ted and a bunch of gals. It turns out that Ted's mane fell out when his nuts were removed but that allowed to stay with the pride without being a threat to the main man. Castration also caused him to grow to a huge size and the ladies loved him. Within minutes of arriving the stud decided to have sex with one of the girls right in front of me. Apparently, neck biting is part of the very brief ritual which lasted about 20 seconds and then required a nap by our star performer.
The guys organising the shoot have a cat that likes to hunt rabbits and one of the cat's victims made a fine feast for the pair of wolves who entered a savage tug-of-war competition to see who got to eat the prize.
The other favourite part of the day was the baboon troop. The youngest member was putting on a great show as he tried to establish himself in the pecking order and he showed that he was afraid of nobody. It looks like someone will be challenging to be the troop leader in the not-too-distant future.