Leopards are, of course, among Africa’s fiercest and most cunning predators. On a typical day, a male leopard like the one in the video below might take down a big gazelle and haul it up a tree, tangle with a ferocious troupe of dagger-toothed baboons, and outmaneuver a cadre of conspiratorial hyenas. So it pretty much goes without saying that a baby bird could never hope to escape from the grasp of such a determined and powerful foe, right?

Recently Sean Gilbert happened upon the scene below in South Africa’s Kruger National Park and discovered the surprising answer to this question. The young male leopard was headed toward the water to drink when he happened upon a water thick-knee chick and pounced. The adult birds valiantly attempt to distract the leopard, but the chick’s fate appears to be sealed. Watch the video below to see how things turn out: