In the heart of South Africa’s Kruger National Park, a lioness and her cubs were relishing a meal high in a tree when an unforeseen predator appeared. A pack of hungry hyenas encircled the tree, hoping to catch some leftovers. Suddenly, one of the cubs made a startling move by jumping down from the tree, seemingly trying to flee the scene.
But as soon as he touched ground, the hyenas pounced on him with their sharp teeth. The cub was petrified; he froze in fear as he heard the piercing howls of the hyenas and saw their menacing eyes. He realized that his actions had put his life at risk.
The mother lion sensed danger and took quick action. She dropped the impala carcass from the tree and leaped to the ground to confront the hyenas head-on. “She gave them a stare of death,” said Benji Solms, a guide at Serondella Game Lodge. “It worked, and they turned their attention from the helpless cub to the meat in front of them.”
The hyenas scurried away to feast on the carcass, leaving the cub safe thanks to his mother’s bravery. This story originally appeared on For The Win.