Lioness steals camera; makes her own film

This fascinating video was sent by alert reader Janice C., whose husband works for the company that made the camera in question.  You’ll be some of the first people to see it.  The YouTube caption:

While shooting pictures for our new book on lions at Tswalu Kalahari Game Reserve, we found some lions patrolling the fence line. We placed our GoPro action camera in their path hoping to catch a glimpse of them as they came past. Little did we know that one lioness would take a liking to the camera and cart it off into the bush!


  1. HP
    Posted May 23, 2011 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    The English language has no word for “adorably terrifying.”

  2. Posted May 23, 2011 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Must’ve smelled of human!

  3. Posted May 23, 2011 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    HP– good point!

    “Look, Lana! One of those hoomans put a camera in our powder room.”

    “They are *such* perverts, aren’t they! Here, I’ll get it. Let’s put it…yeah. Waaaay over here. Where nobody ever goes. How long do you think it’ll take them to find it?”

    “Ten bucks says at least a week…”


  4. mordacious1
    Posted May 23, 2011 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

    Lion-jaw cam! A first…

  5. Posted May 23, 2011 at 6:42 pm | Permalink


    Baihu’s current favorite toy is a wand with a braided wire “string” and a small gray “mouse” on the end. Every so often, he’ll grab the “mouse” firmly in his jaws and trot off to another room. (I’ll drop the wand at that point rather than play tug-o-war with him.)

    If the “mouse” had eyes, that’s exactly what it would see. (Minus the grass.)

    HP, you nailed it.



  6. BilBy
    Posted May 23, 2011 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    The last thing many an impala sees, caught on film. I used to do fieldwork around Tswalu – beautiful part of the world

    • Dominic
      Posted May 24, 2011 at 2:48 am | Permalink

      …and no doubt many of our ancestors – that would have been to last thing they saw as they were eaten…

  7. M31
    Posted May 23, 2011 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    That’s great. Here’s one of an octopus doing the same thing, except it ripped the camera out of the human’s hand and took off with it:

    • Diane G.
      Posted May 23, 2011 at 11:48 pm | Permalink

      That was most interesting and a hoot as well. Kudos to the diver for such an inquiring response to what must have seemed a bit scary at first.

    • Posted May 24, 2011 at 6:17 am | Permalink

      This is pretty great. Almost unbelievable.

  8. Arabiflora
    Posted May 23, 2011 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    There should be a one-liner caption contest (essentially started by yokohamama upthread). My suggestions:

    SWEET! A DVR– for free! Wasteful humans.

    Where the fu@k is the review button– can’t they write these manuals in proper Afrikaans?

    Does this camera-shot make my ass look big?

    • BilBy
      Posted May 24, 2011 at 4:25 am | Permalink

      Not sure Afrikaans is a lion’s language – maybe Setswana? Ditau!

  9. Diane G.
    Posted May 23, 2011 at 11:46 pm | Permalink

    What a good camera! And how considerate of the lioness to keep the lens uncovered rather than, say, facing the back of her throat and then dropped upside down…

    What fun!

  10. Posted May 24, 2011 at 6:16 am | Permalink

    I love the view of the sky the lioness gives while she walks with the camera in her mouth. I kept hoping she’d pick it up again and keep going.

  11. Posted May 24, 2011 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    Neat! We use GoPro Hero cameras underwater in the field all the time, and they are just amazing for stuff like this.

    • Diane G.
      Posted May 25, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

      Do they have models that trigger automatically when something comes along, like a game camera?

  12. Janice Cornforth
    Posted May 24, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    They posted a follow up on how they got the camera back.

    You might ask! We followed her into the bush and, being very careful of the other 2 lionesses present, got as close to her as we could to see where she dropped it. The grass was pretty thick so it took quite a bit of searching before I spotted it. Pat and Sarah kept an eye on the lions as I was searching got the camera.

    afimage 43 minutes ago

  13. Posted May 26, 2011 at 4:28 am | Permalink

    With cats being snakes with fur and octos being snakes stuck to a blob of jello, we now need the missing link: a pure snake doing a video. Monitor lizards come close (snake rescue man Tony Harrison (sssnakeman069 on youtube) had a video made by one, but his account is disabled).

    • Diane G.
      Posted May 26, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      Well, put a camera inside a dead chicken…


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