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Wildlife report for May 2010

By Morné Hamlyn on June 5, 2010

Lots of guests shared amazing sightings with us during May…

GENERAL
Winter is closing in on us with a rapid haste! The blankets and hot water bottles are already permanent guests in our vehicles. LOL

We still had some awesome game viewing with the last bits of green around and large herds of Zebra have been around utilizing it before proper winter sets in. The open areas also get visited more frequently by some Ostrich, which are the largest (non-flying) bird in the world.
Running ZebraPlains Zebra
BateleurOstrich
LEOPARD
Rockfig Jr. and the two almost 7-month-old cubs are doing extremely well. Mommy made many kills over the last month and all of them recorded were very large male impalas. (This happens a lot now in the breeding or rutting season! The males are less alert to danger around them due to the fact that they fight so much with each other over territory and the females.) She has lost one or two of the kills to Hyenas as she did not manage to get it secured in a tree soon enough.
Rockfig jr. on killBrother and sister on kill
Ntombi is making more appearances again and I do understand that she has one cub. We are not sure whether it is male or female yet as the little one is quite nervous of the vehicles still. Ntombi kept the cub in rocky ridges in the riverbed and no vehicles could access the difficult terrain. We will keep you updated as its progress.
Ntombi
The very impressive Argyle male leopard gave us two amazing sightings during the month. He had an impala kill at the first sighting and a warthog at the second.

This big male is very relaxed and even gave us a showdown when confronted by a Hyena at his kill. At first he left the carcass and ran, not knowing how many hyenas had shown up. He soon realized that there was only one and then approached the situation to get his kill back. There was a bit of t a scuffle but he did manage to “steal” the hog back and this time he managed to get it up into a tree before more clan members arrived.
Argyle male drinkingResting on a rock
LION
The Xakubasa pride is now appearing to settle in the central and northern traversing areas. They were seen frequently and seem to stay in good condition. Kills recorded over the last month include impalas, kudus, and young buffalo.
Xakubasa restingWhite gold
The Machaton pride killed a few impalas but nothing sustainable to keep them in the traversing all the time. They did however spend a lot of time in the month on Kings Camp traversing with at least one of the Timbavati Boys.
Playing lionessesWith Timbavati boy
Image Title
ELEPHANT AND CAPE BUFFALO
The large herds of both species only showed themselves in good numbers towards the end of the month. Once here they entertained us around the waterholes on the traversing.
Feeding ellie.
WHITE RHINO
We had plenty sightings of white rhino.
Crash of rhino
The group that varies between 3-6 animals was seen regularly down in the southern traversing and they are getting more relaxed every day we see them. The youngster in the group is now about 3 and a half years old which means that its mother could be pregnant soon or even already.

SPECIAL SIGHTINGS
Whilst sitting in our house the other night I noticed a BIG noise on the porch. I called Melissa over and we opened the curtain to discover a fight between our local camp scavengers. The Honey Badger VS. a big male African Civet. Both of them visit the camp at some point each night. This night however their paths crossed and ended in a BIG fight. Usually one would think the honey badger, a fierce creature by reputation, would have the upper hand. In this case however the Civet once grabbed him by his neck and pulled him around a bit. The fight lasted for about 10 minutes after which their paths separated again, only leaving foul smelling scents hanging in the air…
Honey badger and African civet
Soccer (football) fever is high!!
Good luck Bafana-Bafana!!
Ntombi thinking, VIVA South Africa!!
See you soon!

Kind Regards,

Morné Hamlyn and the Kings Camp guiding team.

15 thoughts on “Wildlife report for May 2010

  1. Thank you Morné…for a wonderful report and fantastic photos! I feel like I’m right there (wish I was!) when reading it.

    Yes, "white gold" for sure….good to hear they are surviving fine.

    Good luck in World Cup.

    Kindest regards to all at Kings.

    Moira.

  2. Fabulous photos. I was so glad to see the white baby is thriving and will be so happy to be back at Kings Camp and see them for myself. Hugs.

  3. Morné

    Your reports are great

    Keep up the Great work

    Regards out of a very cold Vaalperk in Gauteng

    Trevor(Skukuza)O’Donoghue

  4. Beautiful pictures, Morné. wish we were there. Thanks for leeting us "live through your photos"

    Anne

    CD

  5. Morné – Your photos are wonderful. We loved our visit to Kings Camp and wish we were still there. Good luck to South Africa at the Worlds Cup on the 11th. Because we live next to Mexico the Mexican football support groups are overwhelming. We will be watching the game.

    Take care and please give our best to Melissa, Tristan, and everyone at Kings Camp.

  6. Morné,

    My entire family always looks forward to your photos and reports. I share with them because I know they will be at King’s Camp some day and my husband, Bill and I will return. Thank you so much! Kay and Bill Fitch

  7. It is lovely to receive your newsletters, even though we are far away. You give our hundreds of photos ongoing life, since many of the animals you mention !! We are particularly pleased to hear of Rockfig Jnr’s 2 cubs, since one went missing for a day while we were — that was very worrying for all.

    May World Cup 2010 be a great success for ZA — and the Socceroos !!

  8. It is lovely to receive your newsletters, even though we are far away. You give our hundreds of photos ongoing life, since many of the animals you mention !! We are particularly pleased to hear of Rockfig Jnr’s 2 cubs, since one went missing for a day while we were — that was very worrying for all.

    May World Cup 2010 be a great success for ZA — and the Socceroos !!

  9. Thanks Morné and all at Kings Camp again for a fantastic report and fab pics. The leopards as always just gorgeous as all other pics. The Bataleur eagle shot fantastic. Anyway great to see so much activity GO THE SOCEROOS. Kind Regards Heather and STeve Beswick

  10. Hey Morné, How’s things?? Brilliant story with the honey badger! I’m dying to see one of these guys (no joy in over 20 years worth of safaris), so maybe you can assist when we return next year….? Cheers and good luck with the world cup, especially since Ireland wont be there. All the best, Martin – Dublin

  11. Hi Morné, I just found this site and it is fun to see several GREAT photos from the 3 days we spent with you and Salvi. We loved every minute of our stay. Please give our best regards and thanks to Melissa and Tristam–Wonderful massages from each–and to Nico, Salvi and everyone there. We look forward to returning and will follow this wildlife report.

  12. You do keep the great adventure that is King’s Camp alive for us all, Morné! While I read your narrative, I can hear you talking, just like whilst traversing with you. I will always appreciate your knowledge, your instruction, and your photographer’s eye as guide!

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