|Ono and the Egg|
• Howy Parkins
July 21, 2017
"Ono begrudgingly becomes the protector of a cuckoo bird’s egg left in his nest and chases off an African harrier hawk who has come to the Pride Lands to hunt for tasty new treats."
While on patrol, the Lion Guard witnesses a stampede of hyraxes. They wonder what the source of the stampede is and look up to see a harrier hawk circling overhead. Kion exclaims that hawks are not allowed to hunt in the Pride Lands, as it is not their territory, and Ono volunteers to talk to the intruder. As Ono races after the hawk, Kulinda the hammerkop shields her nest from the danger and worries what will become of her egg with such a dangerous predator in the area.
Meanwhile, Ono catches up to the hawk and tries to convince her to let the hyrax go. The hawk refuses, and Ono is forced to distract her long enough for her to run head-on into a cliff face. The hawk lets go of the hyrax, who falls to the savanna floor, and Ono rushes to save it despite its small weight. Just in time, Beshte appears beneath the struggling duo, and Ono drops the hyrax safely onto his friend's back.
After the rescue, Kion approaches the hawk and tells her that she must hunt in her own territory in order to uphold the Circle of Life. Though reluctant, the hawk agrees. However, as she flies away, she mutters to herself that she only plans to leave after sampling more of the Pride Lands' food.
With the hawk gone, the Lion Guard congratulates Ono for his heroic rescue. Unbeknownst to the group, Kulinda the hammerkop watches in fascination and decides that Ono would make the perfect babysitter for her egg. Without consulting Ono, she carries her egg to Ono's nest and deposits it among the twigs.
Later that day, the Lion Guard leads Ono back to his nest and praises him for a hard day's work. Ono is about to settle down in his nest when he feels Kulinda's egg and realizes that a hammerkop has left an egg in his nest. He reacts with confusion, wondering why a hammerkop would abandon its egg, and Kion resolves to find the mother and clear up the confusion. Ono comments that the egg is close to hatching and requires someone to sit on it in order to keep it warm. Bunga volunteers to keep the egg warm, but Ono worries that he will be too rough with it and decides to sit on the egg himself.
In the meantime, the Lion Guard tracks Kulinda's scent across the Pride Lands. In the midst of their search, they stumble across a group of hares that are standing in the path of a dangerous mudslide. One of the hares approaches the Lion Guard and informs them that the other hares are hiding in empty aardvark dens, and the team resolves to save them before they can get buried in mud.
Across the Pride Lands, Ono is sitting on the egg when it suddenly hatches beneath him. A baby hammerkop emerges and begins to imprint on Ono, much to his dismay.
Meanwhile, the Lion Guard rescues the hares from the mudslide. In the midst of the rescue, the team realizes that one of the hares is still hiding in the aardvark dens, and Kion bravely dives into the mud to rescue her. The Lion Guard watches anxiously, fearing the worst, until Kion emerges from the mud with the hare safely in tow.
In the meantime, the baby hammerkop chases a bug out of Ono's nest, and Ono is forced to pursue her across the savanna.
As Ono struggles to take care of the baby hammerkop, the rest of the Lion Guard follows Kulinda's scent to where she is building a new nest in a tree. Kion questions Kulinda as to why she had left her egg in Ono's nest, and she explains that she has been building a new nest in preparation for her egg hatching. She asks the team if her egg is all right, and they assure her that Ono is taking care of it. They then offer to escort her back to Ono's nest.
Across the Pride Lands, Ono continues to chase after the baby hammerkop, who strays dangerously close to a raging river. Ono manages to save the infant just in time and proceeds to scold her for running away from him. He tries to convince her to return to the safety of his nest, but she indicates that she is too tired for the return journey. Giving in to her demands, Ono leads the baby hammerkop into some tall grass and falls asleep with her tucked underneath his wing.
Overhead, the hawk continues to scope the Pride Lands for food. As she is flying, she notices Mwoga the vulture trailing her and demands to know if he is following her. Mwoga admits that he is, for hawks tend to leave behind leftovers that vultures can pick over, and politely introduces himself to her. The hawk introduces herself as Mpishi and explains that she is hoping to sample some new food in the Pride Lands. She laments over how the Lion Guard has continually interrupted her hunts and then attempts to strike up a partnership with Mwoga. The two sing "A Real Meal", in which they argue over whether fresh meat or carrion is better. After the song, Mwoga agrees to help her avoid the Lion Guard.
At the same time, the Lion Guard arrives at Ono's nest, only to find it empty. Kulinda begins to frantically call for her baby, and the baby hammerkop follows her mother's cries to Ono's nest, where the two finally meet each other for the first time. Mother and daughter begin to imprint on one another, and Ono watches in delight, happy to see his charge safe once more. After the imprint is complete, Kulinda thanks Ono for his help, and he warns her that baby hammerkops can get very distracted by insects. No sooner has he said this when he realizes that the baby hammerkop has gone missing again, and he and the rest of Lion Guard rush to save her from danger.
Ono scopes out the area for the baby hammerkop and spots her wandering near the river. Fuli attempts to save the baby hammerkop from danger, but arrives too late to stop her from falling into the raging water. With no time to lose, the Lion Guard and Kulinda pursue the baby hammerkop down the river, only to watch in horror as Mpishi grasps the baby in her talons and takes off for the safety of the skies.
Kulinda and Ono attempt to thwart Mpishi's plans, but Mpishi works together with Mwoga to keep the baby hammerkop from falling back into the Lion Guard's grasp. From the ground, Bunga works out how he can help Kulinda and Ono, and climbs a tree in order to reach the feuding birds. He manages to knock Mwoga from the sky, but Mpishi only takes the baby hammerkop from him and swoops out of harm's way once more.
As Ono watches Mpishi fly away, he works out how he and Kulinda can work together, and the two flank her from the front and the back, forcing her to drop the baby. Mpishi crashes unceremoniously to the ground, where she is surrounded by the Lion Guard and forced to return to her own territory.
After the rescue, Kulinda thanks Ono by naming her daughter "Ona" in his honor. The three then do the imprinting dance together, as Ono is now considered their family.
- Max Charles as Kion
- Joshua Rush as Bunga
- Diamond White as Fuli
- Atticus Shaffer as Ono
- Dusan Brown as Beshte