They are among the most dangerous animals in the world, so it must surely have been a fearsome foe that led an entire pride of lions into scampering up a tree.
But it wasn’t a herd of stampeding wildebeests that caused them to take cover – more a swarm of pesky flies.
These remarkable pictures of the lions, some of which are perched precariously in the branches, were taken by Australian photographer Bobby-Jo Clow, who stumbled across them while leading a safari in the central Serengeti in Tanzania.
The bizarre moment an entire pride of lions decided to take a kip – 15 feet up a tree. At least 15 of the beasts were caught on camera lounging on the branches of a sturdy tree in Central Serengeti, Tanzania
Hakuna Matata: The pride of female lions and their offspring climb up the tree to both escape flies and seek shade from the sun
Room for one more? Nah, maybe not: One male lion tries to find his way up the tree – but it’s proving to be pretty packed
Life doesn’t get any better than this: In the cool of the shade – and away from the pesky ground flies – the lions can finally relax
Keeping an eye out: This majestic beast tries to stare out her airborne nemesis, while the rest of her pride settles in on a tree trunk
Miss Clow, 32, said: ‘Our guide spotted the pride in the trees and luckily we were able to get close enough to the lions to create some unique images. We were close enough that we could hear their vocal interaction and also hear some of them snoring in the tree.
‘It was an incredible sight and was very comical at times as the lions appeared rather clumsy while moving and repositioning themselves.
‘Our guide told us that due to the recent rains, the grass was quite long and that lions climb trees to escape the insects that thrive there.’
Just hanging around: Despite being as much as 15 feet off the ground, this lion still wasn’t happy – with flies still visible around her head
Any spot will do: Whatever space is free on the busy tree seems to be comfortable enough for these lions, with this lion (right) satisfied
The incredible series of photographs were taken on a stretch of rich grassland in Tanzania by Australian photographer Bobby-Jo Clow
Just dreaming the days away: The lionesses take some time out from hunting and washing to catch a nap high up in the air
No room at the inn: Despite being the alpha male of the pride, this lion (left) is told to sling his hook when he tries to join the cubs and lionesses – some of whom slept through the whole thing (right)