Mbiri pride (2)
The Mbiri pride had a very busy time over this period! They managed to kill three Buffalo in the three days. The first killed two Buffalo at Old Pump, on the afternoon of the 26th. The next morning they were nowhere to be found, and a clan of hyena were helping themselves to the remnants of the feast. We don’t know if they were forced off the carcasses by the hyena, or if they just abandoned them. On the morning of the 28th, we found them with another buffalo kill on Catwalk west. Not a bad few days for the Mbiri’s!
Mohlawareng pride (2)
The northern Mohlawareng pride also had some luck, when we found them on the morning of the 27th, with an Impala carcass that they had taken from a male cheetah. The four of them swiftly finished what was left, and made their way to Zebra road. The next afternoon they were found on Koppies cutline, relaxing under on of the numerous Knob-thorn Acacias in the area. The adult lionesses still treat the vehicles with a fair amount of suspicion, and crouch and stare when a vehicle moves, but they will relax in time.
Selati Male Lions and Talamati pride (1)
The dominant pride in the south, also managed to kill 2 Buffalo on Pungwe access. The pride that is 18 strong now with the three new cubs, and including the 2 massive males, were happily feeding on the Buffalo. The antics of the older cubs was very fun to watch, one of the young males even managed to get his head stuck in the carcass. Only one of the Selati males was with the pride, and spent the afternoon having a fat cat nap, away from the rest of the pride.
Sable bridge cubs (1)
The 2 Leopard cubs have now separated, and we managed to find the young female close to Sable Bridge. She was in and out of the drainage, trying her hand at stalking the local Impala and Bushbuck population, so it was difficult to follow her, let alone try and photograph her.
Rhulani male leopard (1)
On the afternoon of the 28th, Rhulani managed to kill a warthog at Wild dog Dam. By the time that we arrived he was sleeping off the effects of an obviously intense battle. Still covered in mud, we waited for him to get up and move the carcass. All we managed to get, was him lifting his head once. He was looking good and well fed!
We had one sighting on the 26th, of a male Cheetah, on Ben and Kerry. He killed an Impala, and we had arrived just after the kill had taken place. After about 10 minutes, he started opening the carcass to feed. It was late in the afternoon, so the light was diminishing quickly. By the next morning he had abandoned the kill, and the Mohlawareng pride of Lions were feeding on the remains. We found his tracks two days later, moving north over Koppies cutline.
Other views of the bush
There was plenty of Elephant movement around the reserve, but the talk was all about the Hyena clan of the central Manyeleti. They did particularly well, getting a free Buffalo meal courtesy of the Mbiri pride on the morning of the 27th. We have seen this clan chase the Mohlawareng pride off kill, and so we believe its very possible that they managed to pry the Mbiri’s off their Buffalo kill as well. The Birding has also picked up, as the cold of winter starts to recede, and spring is making a welcomed return. Some of the migrant species have returned, the red-Breasted Swallow and Wahlbergs Eagle to be exact, have returned.
Until the next blog,
Darren and the Tintswalo Safari team.