Hungry Hyena Finds A Buffalo Stuck in Mud and Still Alive!

Apr 28 2016

This is the moment caught on camera when a wondering hyena comes across a buffalo that’s alive and stuck in mud.



Sune Eloff, Technical Support Manager at Prepaid24, was on a wildlife safari in South Africa with her 3 friends in March 2016, when she filmed this hard sight.

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During the drought in the Kruger recently, a lot of Latest Sightings members have reported how waterholes that once existed are now become nothing but sticky mud as all the water starts to evaporate. Animals that try and drink are prone to getting stuck.

This buffalo, too, unfortunately got itself locked in the mud unable to get out.


Sune, 30, said “We have all visited the Kruger National park tens of times, and also various other big five game parks in Africa and none of us have ever seen a sighting like this.”

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“We visit the Kruger at least five times a year.  Two days before our heart-wrenching encounter, we enjoyed Boulders Bush camp. Although we did not see much wildlife, we kicked off our shoes, grabbed an ice-cold beer and relaxed on the patio.  It was a day of luxury!  We were debating if we should stay another night or travel south to our planned destination, Balule rest camp.

We decided to follow our planned route early the next morning.”

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“Feeling tired, we started the day by packing up and heading out towards the S90.  We left Balule camp just after 05:30am. It was a beautiful day and our strong coffee helped with our lack of sleep. We could not wait to see what the day had in store for us. 


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As we slowly drove through a small low water bridge, we heard a blood curdling noise coming from the already half dried up waterhole.  To our amazement, there was the young buffalo, stuck in the mud and struggling to get up or move.  Every couple of minutes, he would try to move his head or kick with his legs, but to no avail, he was surely stuck and had been for some time. 

It was difficult to watch. 

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The discussion in the car was centered around how long it will take for a predator to hear his calls and sure enough, after just about 10 minutes, we spotted a hyena coming from behind the bush.  On the one hand we were excited to know that we will see some sort of action, but extremely anxious as we could all just imagine the horror of what was to come next.”

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“Before the Hyena even came close enough for the buffalo to feel movement, the buffalo’s calls started to become more and more frequent and anxious.  The Hyena started biting at his backside.  We could hardly watch!  Let alone, hold the video camera stable.”

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“The Hyena proceeded to bite through the buffalo’s skin, while the buffalo was still alive and kicking and calling non-stop.  After about 20 minutes, the buffalo finally succumbed to his injuries and the feast was on for the Hyena.  He ripped open the entire backside and helped himself to the soft juicy meat and insides.  The Hyena was extremely nervous, looking back towards the bush ever so often.  At one point, he grabbed a big chunk of meat and headed back towards the bush.  After waiting for a few minutes, a jackal appeared and also took advantage of this rare plated up meal.  The Hyena came back to the buffalo for a few more bites, but then left the scene. We stayed for about another 10 minutes, but no other predator arrived.”

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“The buffalo’s will to survive and his fight to get out of the mud, caused his down fall in the end as his struggle attracted the attention of the Hyena.

Even with being huge nature lovers and wildlife fanatics, we sat through this sighting with tears in our eyes. Many times we had to look away from the scene and hold back the sickening feeling building up from our stomachs. We knew that it was a rare and wonderful sighting and that we were lucky to be there and to experience it but to sit through being eaten alive took guts, tears and determination.”


“We will forever remember this sighting. We drove away from the scene with mixed feelings and no appetite.  We had experienced luxury, misery, sadness and excitement. We have seen the best and the worst that mother-nature has to offer.  It was indeed a splendid trip!”


Written by: Sune Eloff / Nadav Ossendryver

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