Another amazing month has passed and we are already nearly into the season of spring. The Knobthorn trees have already started blooming, the days are getting longer and the temperatures are rising.
This month the lions have been very active. The focus though has still been on the Machaton pride. It is confirmed that the single female had at least two bundles of joy. We were treated to numerous sightings of the female bringing her cubs out for all to see. The other four Machaton lions have headed south again so let’s hope they return soon. The Jacaranda pride has started to dominate in the north, being seen almost every day. The highlight of the month was when they managed to bring down a sub- adult hippo. The new nomad lion and his smaller partner have been taking an opportunity to start possibly setting up a territory in the south as they are making a number of kills and even roaring in the area. Jade and I were very lucky to witness these two lions chasing a huge herd of buffalo, but eventually they crossed out of our traversing area.
Another great month of leopard viewing, Nthombi is still doing very well with her two cubs and have been seen on various different kills. She is venturing further and further away from the original den sites with the cubs even bringing them near the lodge for a drink at the weir. The Rockfig Jr female has been very scarce this month, which again could mean she is spending a lot of time with a new litter of cubs. The Marula female has been seen spending more time in the Klaserie Game Reserve or Keer Keer. This could be due to Nthombi moving further west now that her cubs are more mobile. We managed to find Umfana on an impala kill towards the end of the month and he treated our guests to some fantastic sightings. The Xiviti male in the north was up to his old tricks still enjoying fishing for catfish in the drying pools of the Nhlaralumi river and seems to be establishing himself in the area.
African Buffalo & Elephant
With the bush becoming very dry we have been spoilt with huge herds of buffalo numbering over 800, and for days on end they were trailed by the two nomad lions. The lions managed to catch on just inside the Klaserie Game Reserve giving the buffalo herd a few days of reprieve. Our guests have also been treated to some entertainment during meal times with the old male buffalo making a regular appearance at the camp water hole. There have also been great numbers of elephants seen. The herds have been fairly large for this area with the biggest being approximately 60 individuals. Some of the guests were treated to a sighting of an extremely large tusker.
The wild dogs were few and far between this month but Jade was lucky enough to see a pack moving through the area along with the new pups which were now old enough to travel with the adults, thus allowing them to use bigger areas to hunt. The elusive nocturnal animals were also located on a few occasions we saw honey badger and once a serval was seen. The hyena den on JayDee seems to still be active providing us with many laughs as the cubs stalk the vehicle regularly, until there is any movement. They then turn and run back to safety before starting all over again.
Well that’s all for this month, join us again for next months updates.
Dean & the Kings Camp Guiding team