WATCH | Terrifying moment lion attacks man in Limpopo game reserve
Warning: Graphic content not for sensitive viewers
A video has emerged of the shocking moment a lion attacked the owner of a private game reserve in Limpopo on Monday.
In the video uploaded to Facebook, the lion can be seen strolling inside its enclosure at the Marakele Predator Centre outside Thabazimbi when the man enters. The lion chases the man who tries to escape, but the large predator catches him moments before he reaches the gate.
Warning: This video contains graphic content not for sensitive viewers
The lion grabs him by his neck and drags him back towards the bushes as onlookers scream for help.
A woman outside the enclosure is heard crying and screaming "somebody help, somebody help please" as the man lies on the ground motionless. The lion then drags him further into the bushes, out of sight.
What sounds like gunshots can be heard as onlookers yell, trying to scare the lion away. The lion is seen off in the distance shortly before the video ends. It is unclear how the man was removed from the enclosure or what happened to the lion.
Limpopo police Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said the man is currently recovering in hospital, but the incident was not being investigated by the police as no one had died.
He could not confirm if the predator had been euthanised.
"What we can say to people who have these wild animals is that they need to treat them as [wild animals]," he warned.
The Sun identified the victim as Marakele Predator Centre owner Mike Hodge. A friend told the British publication that Hodge entered the enclosure to investigate a smell that was 'upsetting' the lions.
The park was established in 2010 by Hodge and his wife Chrissy, according to its website. The British couple moved to South Africa in 1999 and started a lion conservation project in 2003. A few years later they founded the park.
Attempts by TimesLIVE to contact the park were unsuccessful.