By Leigh Kemp
A kill can change hands a number of times between Lions and Hyenas. In many areas of Africa the Hyena hunts more food than it scavengers and Lions scavenge more than they hunt.
Hyenas react very differently to male and female Lions. When Hyenas are on a kill and Lions are attempting a takeover the Hyenas will stand and fight if it is a group of Lionesses involved but as soon as a male Lion is in the picture the Hyena will give a wide berth.
If male Lions are on a kill the Hyenas will not make any attempt at a takeover but with Lionesses the Hyenas will show less restraint. It has been noted in some areas that Hyenas challenge the male Lions but this may be from previous incidents with the particular males where the Hyenas gained the upper hand and they have dominance over the males.
Lions and Hyenas scavenge a great deal from other predators such as the Leopard, Cheetah and Wild Dog. To overcome the stealing of their food by other predators Cheetahs eat very quickly once they have killed in order to prevent scavenging by others.
Leopard will often pull their kill into a tree to keep it from other Lions and Hyenas. Wild Dogs can devour a carcass in a few minutes but it has been observed where Lions and Hyenas have stolen the kill.
In the game of survival predators will kill the young of other predators when they come across them. As the young are left alone when the adults are out hunting they are often targets of other predator species and even individuals of their own species of different prides or territories.
Baboons form a large part of a Leopard diet and they therefore kill leopard cubs when they come across them. They do not eat the cubs but do this as part of their survival strategy.