The heart-breaking images were captured by Larry Anthony Pannell from California.

In his blog, he described coming across the lion, who he initially saw drinking from a watering hole.

‘After he had his fill of water he struggled to his feet hardly able to stand. What you did not notice while he was drinking, he literally was nothing but skin and bones.’

He describes how as the lion moved away from the water ‘he staggered as if he was drunk towards a small rise’ trying to catch his breath every few steps. 

After reaching the rise he began slowly descending to the ground but eventually collapsed.

‘It was evident he was in his last days if not his last hours on this earth,’ he said.