Things aren’t always predictable in nature… and when I saw a warthog heading up a trail near King’s Pool straight into a pack of wild dogs with a freshly-killed impala, I knew it would be trouble for the warthog. I readied my camera for the demise of the approaching warthog… and then suddenly and unexpectedly, he charged, right at the dogs. This caught the dogs by surprise and they scattered. The warthog then proceeded to walk over and sniff the carcass.
The dogs soon regrouped and came right back at the warthog, chasing him away from the area. They resumed feeding on the rest of the impala, but, after a few moments, the warthog wandered back onto the scene and faced off with the dogs again. Another round of chasing by the warthog, and then by the dogs, left the warthog about fifty metres away, but still focusing on the dead impala. He wandered back for a third time, this time he successfully chased the dogs away from the carcass and began to lick the rib cage and crunch on the bones, the dogs finally giving up to the persistent warthog. Fortunately, I am not a betting man, otherwise I would have lost a bundle in predicting the victor in this strange encounter that day.
In the meantime, the rest of the pack had travelled the short distance to the waterhole at the sunken hide. As the adults were playing with the puppies, a big bull sable antelope approached the waterhole. The dogs tried to pursue the sable but he would have nothing of it and charged at them kicking ferociously. Soon enough, the dogs lost interest leaving the sable to claim the waterhole as his prize.
My advice to the dogs... stick with impalas, buddies!
Written and Photographed by Dana Allen.