February 2017 is something of the past, it was the month of LOVE – the animals definitely took advantage of this and we on the other hand had good sightings and much needed rain. It is so nice to see all living organisms coming alive again and vegetation turning green.
Also now beginning of March means that summer is over and autumn is here – Prepare yourself for cold early morning-and cool afternoon game drives. So bring those extra layers with and dress like an onion.
Sightings for February 2017:
1. The Hercules Pride took down a buffalo at the beginning of February and they were feeding for two days until hyenas came into the area and managed to chase the pride away and thus the hyenas had a great feast. That afternoon the Hercules Pride were lying down next to a dam and minutes after sunset the hyenas got active, went to cool down inside the dam and the youngsters played chase with a piece of buffalo leg. The young male lions tried to go back to the carcass, but the hyenas thought otherwise and chased them away.
2. The Timbavati males were seen a few times. One morning we found them minutes after they killed a buffalo and were there for a few days. When they abandoned the carcass two of the Ross-breakaways came and fed on the remains only to be chased away by a clan of hyenas.
3. We found two of the Ross-breakaway lions (limping male and a female) again just outside Kings Camp one morning. We spend some time with them and the female sniffed animals within the same area and immediately got up and investigated. We followed her for a few metres until she stopped and we spotted zebras not far away. The male limped closer to help her with the stalking, but unfortunately he gave their presence away and there the zebras ran away and they were left with empty stomachs for the day. A few days later the other female joined up with them – We think she was mating with another male.
4. Close to the middle of the month the 3 Ross-Breakaway lions were seen on a buffalo kill and were feeding for a few days.
5. One morning Grant spotted the 2 Maposa males just outside Waterbuck Villa, they were not keen on staying and went back to the far south.
6. We also found two unknown female lions close to the end of February on a kudu kill just next to Waterbuck Villa.
A Few different elephant and buffalo sightings were enjoyed throughout February.
A few Leopards were seen on kills, while hunting, sleeping and Ntombi made a few visits to camp again – One morning we found her tracks inside the BOMA.
We were fortunate again with only a few wild dog sightings.
1. Remember Mashele found a pack of 11 wild dogs close to camp, we were fortunate to see them playing around before they went to ‘BED’.
2. And then my favourite, we went far North one afternoon to follow up on a pack of dogs which was seen earlier that morning. We eventually found them sleeping and luckily for us they got active and started playing and running towards the north. As we followed them Sunnyboy stopped me and pointed out two leopards on a kill quite far from the road. We stopped to view them and continued following the dogs as they were still running. Suddenly they sniffed impalas on our right hand side and bomb shelled into the bush – we just saw impalas and dogs EVERYWHERE. We just sat there and waited for a possible kill. And that is what happened… One Dog chased a baby impala over the road not that far away from us and managed to outrun the impala and pulled him down next to the road. This was my FIRST Wild Dog kill. It was sad and brutal to witness this kill, but on the other side very special as being able to witness a hunt and kill is RARE.
I hope you had a good February 2017 and we are looking forward to the rest of March as we will enjoy a cup of coffee on the crisp autumn mornings.