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Kapama’s King has Fallen

Mar 9, 202223 comments

Whenever I think of words to describe the iconic one-eyed male lion of Kapama, Moria Madoda, words like majestic, powerful, dignified and dominant come to mind.

In his prime, he roamed Kapama with all the authority and prestige of a king. He controlled the south and north of the reserve. That was until three brothers formed a coalition. The power of the three combined was too much for the lone king.

In September 2016, in a legendary battle against the trio, two of which were his sons, he was overpowered and Moria tragically lost his right eye in the fight. Realising he was no longer the dominant male he moved towards the southwestern end of the reserve. 

Kapama iconic one-eyed male lion

The loss of his right eye never dampened his spirits. He teamed up with two lionesses who recognised he still commanded respect and so together these three formed a powerful team. They were a force to be reckoned with and by banding together were able to take down large antelope and buffalo bulls to survive.

Kapama iconic one-eyed male lion
Kapama iconic one-eyed male lion

 However, as is the circle of life, age caught up to our king. This past weekend our beloved and majestic Moria Madoda found the perfect, tranquil spot on the Reserve he knew all too well. As the African sun set over Kapama, it set over our king for the last time as well as he took his final breath.

The Kapama Reserve feels a little empty now knowing he is no longer with us. For 15 years this beautiful lion graced our plains creating unforgettable memories for our guests all around the world.

Every time a sighting of him was posted, guests would share their own stories of their encounters with him. He not only meant a lot to the Kapama team but to all our guests as well.

Moria Madoda, you will not be forgotten. Your powerful roar will continue to echo through the Reserve and you will always be remembered as the iconic one-eyed King of Kapama.

Rest in Peace.

Story by Liezel Holmes – Safari Manager

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23 Comments

  1. Shaun Simone

    I’ll never forget seeing a male lion for the first time. Let alone, one with one eye! Thank you for the memories. RIP MM.

    Reply
    • Nicole Walker

      Hi Shaun

      Thanks for the message.

      Kind regards
      Nicole

      Reply
      • Karien Van Deventer

        How sad….thank you ….

        Reply
  2. Felicitas Menzel, Germany

    Thanks to Queen and Panic we were able to meet you and were talking about you ever since. You were a wonderful and magnificent creature and I am sure you left many cubs on Kapama to continue your story! Thank you for really enriching our lifes any memories! RIP! ❤️
    Menzel family

    Reply
    • Nicole Walker

      Hi Felicitas

      Thank you for the lovely message.

      Kind regards
      Nicole

      Reply
  3. Chad Williams

    It was an honor to meet you in Nov 2021 King Moria Mododa! RIP and I am blessed to have had the honor to encounter you in your majestic splendor!

    Reply
    • Nicole Walker

      HI Chad

      Thanks for the message and we are so pleased you encountered him during your stay with us.
      Kind regards
      Nicole

      Reply
  4. Judy

    Always thought I would come back to see him. I heard lots of fond things about him. It breaks my heart that he is no more.. Rest well King… Rest well one -eye …

    Reply
    • Nicole Walker

      Hi Judy
      Thanks so much for the message.
      Kind regards
      Nicole

      Reply
  5. Sandra and Fred Grine

    So sorry to hear this news. We were fortunate enough to have shared his beauty be it only briefly.
    Rest In Peace Madoda
    Sandra and Fred

    Reply
    • Nicole Walker

      HI Sandra
      Thanks so much for the message. So pleased you got to see him during your visit.
      Kind regards
      Nicole

      Reply
      • Stuart du Toit

        This is such sad news. We were fortunate to meet up with King on two separate trips to Kapama and have some really great photos of him. Bitter sweet knowing that he passed on peacefully rather than been torn in another fight. We all share in your loss.RIP Madoda

        Reply
  6. Nerissa Ravjee

    We had such a special encounter with him on our last trip.Such a honour and priviledge. May the King of the jungle rest in peace. Sending love to his Kapama family who care so much <3

    Reply
  7. Steve

    Such an iconic lion, fierce and demanding of respect and held the reins of power for a long time, he greeted us on arrival to our first trip to South Africa in 2019 and was ever present on our recent trip in 2021, he will most definitely be missed, his presence will always be felt & his bloodline will always flow through Kapama. Rest In Peace king. 🙏🏼🙏🏼

    Reply
  8. Jeni Dawes

    Rest softly, gently, peacefully Moria Madoda, the plains will not be the same but memories of you will remain always.

    Reply
  9. Jose A. Pitarque

    RIP King Moria Madoda ! You made our trip memorable . May your offsprings multiply and spread your legacy !!

    Reply
  10. Kathleen Emery

    What a beautiful majestic animal . It was so nice to be able to share his space and for the vehicle to just stop right beside him. Wonderful- I had the privilege to visit with you in January of 2020 for trip of a lifetime!
    Sorry for your loss-

    Reply
  11. Laurie

    Feel so fortunate to have experienced his presence during our March 2020 visit. Majestic indeed. My sincere condolences. May he always be remembered.

    Reply
  12. Marianne Brown

    Vale Moria Madoda. We had the privilege of meeting you from afar in September, 2019 and watched you sit by your beautiful family in the late afternoon sun. You were truly magnificent to behold. RIP. Marianne & Paul.

    Reply
  13. Cindy Torlage

    I am so glad I got to see this beautiful King. I was heartbroken to hear this devastating news of his passing. RIP MM…..you where a Legend.

    Reply
  14. Jennifer Lynne Herring-Met

    My first safari, my first game ride, the first animal we encountered one year ago. As we approached, he sat down and began to roar into the night. We all couldn’t speak as his roar shook our bones. It was absolutely unlike anything I have experienced. I cried when we got back to our room as I it was so profound. Truly a sight and an experience never to be forgotten. Our guides couldn’t believe we were witnessing this.

    Thank you Madoda for sharing your space with us, Rest in Peace.

    Namaste,

    Jennifer

    Reply
  15. Steve

    Such an iconic lion, fierce and
    demanding of respect and held the
    reins of power for a long time, he
    greeted us on arrival to our first trip
    to South Africa in 2019 and was ever
    present on our recent trip in 2021, he
    will most definitely be missed, his
    presence will always be felt & his
    bloodline will always flow through
    Kapama. Rest In Peace king. 🙏🏼🙏🏼

    Reply
  16. Cheryl Stander

    Aaaaw this is so sad, sorry for the huge loss.
    We had the most awesome time at Kapama, and saw many lions, walked right past us while in the van, a little nerve wrecking, but a wonderful experiance.

    Reply

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