We had two sightings of the Mbiri pride over the 4 days. On the afternoon of the 2nd, they were found close to mantobeni pan and moved north towards old pump. A large Buffalo herd had assembled at the pans and they started half heartedly stalking the Buffalo. After a while, they came to rest in the open area. The second sighting was the next morning, to the west of Sable bridge. The cubs were happily suckling, and the females seemed quite content. They are still moving around the northern parts of the heart of their territory, as this is probably the place that they consider the safest for the cubs at the moment.
Thanda Impi male Lions
We also had 2 sightings of the Thanda Impi’s over the 4 days. We first the Skorro male with the Mbiri pride at mantobeni pan. He moved north with the pride, but slumped for an afternoon nap at the tree line. The 2nd sighting, was both males at Khoka Moya Dam. With all the disturbance in the south, and the fact that the Sizanani male hasn’t been looking well for a little while, its interesting that they have moved all the way to the northern extremes of their territory.
Matimba male Lions
We had one sighting of the 2 big males, at scratches plains in the western part of the reserve. They were resting up on the sodic area. After all the chaos they caused with the Mbiri pride, it’s interesting that they moved away from the territory completely, back into the Nharhu prides territory. The one male has a bad paw, and probably isn’t in the best physical condition to confront other male Lions at the moment, or if the Mbiri prides push north eventually led to the marimba’s giving up the chase. Who knows!
Birmingham male Lions
After a long absence, it was very interesting that after the death of one of the Selati males, they wasted no time in making themselves known in the southern Manyeleti again. We found all 4 of them between Dixie koppies and Jordaans Dam, resting the afternoon away. The tracks the next morning went east, towards where the Selati male and talamati pride having been moving around, so their intentions are very clear, but it still looks like they’re testing the waters. They eventually moved back into the Sabi Sands east of Buffelshoek camp. They definitely haven’t wasted any time trying to press any sort of advantage over the last remaining Selati male. It’s going to be tough going forward for the big guy.
We had only the one Leopard sighting over the 4 days, and it came in the form of the young princess in the south. The Ukuthula females was found just to the north of Buffelshoek camp, and after a little while in the sighting, she tried to hunt a bushbuck. She then went up a tamboti tree and caused a group of Southern Ground Hornbill a lot of stress, because a few tree’s away they had an active nest She never tried for the chick though and eventually moved west away from the area.
Other views from the bush
Until the next blog
Darren and the Tintswalo Safari Team