A day in Savanna

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The deer was keeping a watch on her fawn from a distance. She saw the two cheetahs walking this side from a distance. Her fawn was lying still like a mound of earth – small soft newly born brown-colored fawn.

The fawn still had birth fluid all over it which attracted flies. It had the scent of the birth fluid oozing out of it from all its body. It was newly born, just an hour ago. The mother got concerned. She took a small risk when the cheetahs were looking away. She came to the fawn and tried licking out the fluid from its body. She left instantly again and went back to her original position. The cheetah sat after walking for a while enjoying the warm sun. They didn’t notice the mother licking her child.

The mum deer started snorting as she was keeping a watch on the fawn. She was tensed. She wanted to protect her baby – her effort of two hundred days would come to an end any moment with single wrong step. But she can’t do anything about it. She carried her child for two hundred days i.e. twelve thousand minutes i.e. 720,000 seconds. She must wait. She has to wait for this to pass and she has enough patience. She is not like human beings who always want short-cut solution. She would wait till this is pass. Either her fawn would fall prey or would be saved. And she would wait to see till the end.

In the grassland of Savanna, Africa life goes on. Life of a fawn and that of a cheetah coexist. Sometimes they become prey and predator respectively and sometimes they ignore each other.

The cheetahs sensed something and started walking again towards the fawn. The mother deer started to snort loudly and more frequently now. But the long grasses of the jungle hid the fawn. As motionless and as still as a stone it lay on the ground indeed as a mound of earth. The cheetahs again stopped walking and sat at a distance. The mother deer almost lost hope and stared sadly towards her fawn. The herd was also slowly moving away and starting to leave the place. The herd saw the cheetahs as well by now. She needs to move away with her herd. The cheetahs would otherwise understand the existence of her fawn. She would not act anyway to show that she has her fawn nearby. She must act smartly to save her fawn.

The cheetahs stood up again and started walking. In the meantime, a herd of Waterbuck antelope arrived nearby. They were a group of antelopes of all ages and yes with calves as well. The cheetahs got distracted from the herd of deer. They spotted a Waterbuck calf and started running. The Waterbuck herd saw them and started running too. They started to leave the place. There were two of the cheetahs. They attacked the youngest calf and so the weakest, from two sides. The calf was not fast enough to flee away with its herd and so fell prey to the cheetahs.

The calf’s fate was fawn’s fortune. The cheetahs forgot about the deer’s herd and when they were busy attacking the Waterbuck calf the fawn got up and somehow ran quickly to its mum with its weak legs. The mum deer snorted loudly in great relief and licked and caressed her fawn. The deer herd then slowly left the place as well.

The cheetahs were done for the day or may be two. So was the mother deer. She saved her fawn and surviving for first twenty-four hours is a great achievement for a fawn in the dangerous jungle of Savanna. And for the cheetahs it’s not every day that they eat. They don’t have breakfast lunch or dinner like the human beings. They only feed once in two or three days.

The sun was set by that time. The mother deer nursed her fawn safely now. It was full. So, it felt asleep in its mother’s lap happily and content. It was tired from the morning chase. The cheetahs were asleep too with a nice meal filling their stomach.

Another day was over in Savanna. The jungle fell asleep too. Tomorrow will see another story would unfold. A story about a prey and a predator. A story about a mother who could save her child when another mother’s child fell victim to a predator.