Lioness Steals Photographer’s Camera, Gives It To Her Cubs As A New Toy

Wildlife photographer Barbara Jensen Vorster was photographing a lion pride in Botswana when her camera was stolen by a lioness. Fortunately, she had another camera ready and captured a series of photos showing what happened next.

Vorster was shooting at the Mashatu Game Reserve with her camera kit worth over $2,000 — when she accidentally dropped the kit on the ground. Upon hearing the thud, the protective lioness mother growled and then approached the group to investigate, causing Vorster and her party to retreat in their 4×4.

“The camera fell with the lens looking up, she gently flipped the camera on its side and picked it up by the barrel of the lens,” Vorster says.

The lioness then took the camera and telephoto lens in her mouth and carried it some distance before dropping it to the ground. Her cubs then jumped on their new toy and started playing with it.

“They dragged it through the dirt, chewed on the lens hood and then fortunately, like most kids, soon grew tired with their new toy,” the photographer says.

Here’s a video of the incident: