13-16 September 2016 – A Time for the Leopards to Shine

December 14, 2016

Lions (6 – Mbiri pride (5)

The Mbiri pride moved around a lot over these three days. They were initially found with a Buffalo kill on Nyathi drive, and moved to Lomfane by the afternoon. They were found again after some serious tracking, with another two Buffalo kills, just off Windi Windi. The females were not willing to share their hard-fought kill with the vultures, and went chasing after the big birds a few times during the sighting. From there they moved south, and were found the next morning at Manor House pan, where they spent the day resting. They then started moving a little more east, and were found on AK’s road on the morning of the 16th.

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Nharhu pride (1)

The Nhahru pride were only found once over the three days, and it was in the middle of Main Dam. They moved behind the dam wall, and the sighting was short.

Leopard (5)
Sable bridge cubs (1)

Leopard sightings were a dime a dozen! It all started with a troop of monkeys alarm-calling to the west of Pumphouse. We spent a good hour tracking, before finding the Sable Bridge female and one of her cubs with a Bushbuck kill. The big female disappeared before anyone could really see her, but her cub was nice and relaxed and gave us a great sighting.

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Rhulani male (2)

The Rhulani male also gave us some great sightings. He was first found on Reedbuck plains, where he moved into the drainage line. In the afternoon he was again found, but this time over 2 kilometers away on Metsikitsoro plains. It just goes to show how hard he has to work, to cover his massive territory.

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Makhambo male (1)

The Makhambo male Leopard was also found with a Reedbuck kill, close to Buffelshoek plains. He really has become our prince of the south, and is very easy with the camera’s. It will be interesting to see if he “sets up shop” in the south, once he’s big enough to claim a territory.

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Beacon male (1)

Beacon seems to have claimed the area around the lodge from Rhulani. He was seen at Manor house access, calling and scent marking. It will be interesting to see how Rhulani responds to this. Will he return the favour? Will they eventually have a full on fight? An interesting few months are coming up!

Other views from the bush

The general game was once again outstanding. The big news was the Hyena clan moving their den to Civet road. Several Elephant herds have been moving around the central Manyeleti, as well as some smaller Buffalo herds as well. Some of the interesting sightings were the vultures at the many Lion kills.

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