A video of a lion killing a heron bird at a zoo in Amsterdam resurfaced on YouTube yesterday. The viral footage shows the large animal snatching the bird in mid-air.
The footage was taken by a visitor at the Artis Royal Zoo on a Sunday last year. As the crowd wandered by the big cat enclosure, a small pride of lions basking in the sun came into view.
Suddenly, a lioness took a stalking posture with her eyes on a bird about 25 yards away. Just as wild lions are seen approaching their quarry in a stealth-like manner; it was playing out in a zoo.
The bird, oblivious of the cat’s approach until the last second, makes a desperate attempt to take flight, but is snatched out of the air by the leaping lion’s claws.
Then, the rest of the pride, led by a big male, closes in for their share, but it was finders-keepers; the lion that killed the heron tried in vain to make off with the catch. She circles, bobs and weaves as the others try to pickpocket her for the pint-size appetizer.
In the end, it was a cub that claimed the prize.
While it’s not often animals prey on one another at zoos, the incident reinforces their wild traits.