Unable to mind its own business, the honey badger repeatedly picked a fight with the oryx who used its horns to fling it sky-high.
This unique and exciting sighting was captured by Dirk Theron while on a photographic safari in Etosha National Park.
Dirk tells LatestSightings.com the story: “This particular spot in the Etosha National Park is one of my favourites which I have often visited on many of the Photography Tours, which I host. We were sitting at the waterhole for a while, with not much happening.”
“We were actually discussing going back to camp, as there was not much time left before the gate closed. I was about to turn the vehicle around when I noticed something moving in the distance. It did not take me long to recognize the way the animal moved and with great excitement, I announced ‘Honey Badger!’”
“This fella was about to put on quite a show. It all happened so rapidly and was over in a few short minutes. You can spend years in the wild and never see anything like this. This is what I love about travelling in Southern Africa.”
“These animals are short-tempered and don’t hesitate to take on anything that gets in their way. The type of behaviour that was displayed here is really not uncommon, however, this Badger very narrowly escaped, as the Oryx (Antelope) could have effortlessly impaled the Badger.”
“This Badger would just simply charge at the Oryx, who would basically headbutt the Badger into the ground. He simply took a step back, hooked the Badger between its horns, and tossed him high into the air. The first time it happened I thought the Badger was dead, but it just shook itself off and charged again continuously. Eventually, the Oryx grew tired and just ran off.”
“It is impossible for me to say, however, it is speculated that this animal might have had rabies. One of the reasons we say this, is because although it appears to drink, it was not really drinking. Among other things, rabies affects the muscles, making it impossible for the animal to swallow.”
“The second day we were at the same waterhole and the same Badger came running along. Only this time picking a fight with a Black-backed Jackal. I could not believe it!”
“Most people will not believe what happened next, as I do not have photographic evidence. The Badger chased the Jackal. In the distance, where I could not reach with my camera, a few other Jackals joined the fray. Eventually, the Badger was fighting 7 Jackals! In the distance through the dust, you could just make out the animals lunging in and out at the Badger. At one stage he grabbed a Jackal by the snout and simply swung him out the way. It was crazy! This went on for a few minutes, then two Hyenas joined in. Sadly, I could not capture any of this…”
“I am absolutely ecstatic with the images I captured of this once-in-a-lifetime event. Like I said before, one can spend years in the wild and never see anything like this.”