Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, we know that since 1953. But did you know 180kg lions also like them very much? Well, at least according to this Daily telegraph story that might just be the case. It is not everyday that death grabs one's soul and hands it back while the entire process gets captured on camera in a perfect photojournalism drama with a heart and a happy end. Yet, for British primary school headmistress Kate Drew that is more or less how things turned out when a 180kg cat pounced on from behind and dragged her to the ground, sinking its teeth into the back of her neck.
Those amazing photos are signed with the watermark "Austral" but it is not clear who is the cool headed person who should be thanked for them.
Working as a volunteer teacher in Tanzania, Drew (28) was spending a few weeks "traveling across Africa on a bus with other backpackers". During this tour the group visited a reserve in Zimbabwe where lions are bred to be released back into the wild and tourists can pay $50 to "walk with several of the big cats" which are "considered tame enough to be allowed contact with humans". Here is what happened in Kate Drew's words:
"We were just leaving and everything seemed to have gone well - until one jumped at me from behind. I was scared enough when he pinned me to the ground, but when I looked up and saw the other two, I thought I'd had it.''
It may have been a miracle or just a random coincidence. Though the wounds on Drew's head left her with 13 stitches (below) they missed her brain stem and she was rescued by the brave reserve wardens (above) who "rushed in with sticks and wrestled the animal away."
According to the Daily Telegraph the lion was not on his way for it's lunch when it grabbed poor Drew but was apparently just playing around a little bit after being "attracted by her mane-like long blonde hair". There goes at least one advantage of being a blonde, ha?
Unfortunately, Drew's story is not always how things end in this genre. According to lairweb.org.nz, a website focusing on endangered large cats, only three out of every one thousand tigers will resort to attacking people, making their reputation as a man-eater "quite inaccurate". Yet, also according to this website, even this low number has been enough to make the tiger responsible for more human deaths than any other predator. Lions are cute but if you are still not sure they also kill people, here is a list of Mountain Lion Attacks On People in the U.S. and Canada since 1986.