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Rangers Report for May 2014

By Dean Robinson on May 31, 2014
Nthombi & her boys
Nthombi & her boys

Greetings again to all Kings Camp and nature followers. The month of May again has been an exceptional game viewing month. In this month we have also been experiencing some real changes in terms of game drive temperature and times. With the afternoon drives going out slightly earlier when the temperature is still warm and returning back to the lodge for dinner with a genuine nip in the air. Morning drives start off relatively cold, warming up as soon as the sun rises over the horizon by the time we are having our morning coffee break. We have been waking up to some misty mornings, which is because of where we are in the world something very rare and enjoyed by all to view this prehistoric landscaped draped in a smoky carpet. On these mornings when the mist has lifted and the sun is shining, from the right areas one can see every spiders web dancing in the morning sun’s rays for miles. The days are mildly warm, perfect temperature. Sun sets this time of year are like our leopards…. truly mesmerizing.

Wild dogs playing
Wild dogs playing
Wild dog
Wild dog

Sightings as mentioned have been great. Plenty of elephants coming more often to drink from the now almost completely dry river bed and at the watering hole in front of the lodge. Elephants are fussy about water quality so they often come down to the river bed to dig through the sand to the water table, where the sand will act as a natural filter providing clean drinking water for elephants and animals following behind. Leopards have been providing guests with a great thrill. Some guests even getting a glimpse of “Rock Fig Jr.” leopardesses new cubs hidden in some roots of a Weeping Boer Bean tree, that must have been a real special sighting. The big news is the lions; the “Mbandi” male lion was seen mating with the “Machaton” female. She has left her 3 boys for the first time to my knowledge. With this action we hope that male lion dominance has been established and a new “Machaton” pride can be formed with their core territory around Kings Camp. Big herds of buffalo making their way regularly through our traversing area. These nomadic animals in constant movement in search or good grazing and water sources but also always on the go to avoid lion detection. A huge crash of rhinos is often seen by our lucky guests. The wild dogs have again been visiting Kings traversing area with myself getting a visual at least 3 different packs coming through in this last month. Very lucky we are because they will start to den soon, tying their nomadic lives down to the den. They coincide their den time with the easier available impala males that are too busy rutting and not been as vigilant as an impala should be compared to the rest of the year. All we can do is hope they den close by so their foraging routes will come past us from time to time.

Snarling leoparas Nthombi's youngster didn't like Ntsongwaan tryng to steal his meal
Snarling leoparas Nthombi’s youngster didn’t like Ntsongwaan tryng to steal his meal
Hyena cubs
Hyena cubs

I would like to thank you all who follow us here at Kings Camp in the world renowned Timbavati Nature Reserve. If you are not joining us on safari anytime soon, I hope you will tune in next month for an update and a look into the life of the African bush. Everybody enjoy and take care.

Machaton boys on a buffalo kill
Machaton boys on a buffalo kill
Elephant digging for water
Elephant digging for water
Nthombi's boy on an impala
Nthombi’s boy on an impala

 

                                                                                                                          Report written by assistant head ranger Jade Bradshaw and photos taken by head ranger Dean Robinson

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