Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Winter Brings safariLIVE Schedule Changes


As we move into the winter months, safariLIVE will be experiencing some schedule changes, coinciding with the later sunrise and earlier sunset here in the southern hemisphere. From April 1, the schedule will be as follows:

Sunrise Safari:
06:00 - 09:00 CAT
00:00 - 03:00 Eastern
21:00 - 00:00 Pacific

Sunset Safari:
15:30 - 18:30 CAT
09:30 - 12:30 Eastern
06:30 - 09:30 Pacific

WE look forward to seeing you all on drive with us, as the dry season brings new sights and sounds to the Sabi Sand. Check in with us on wildearth.tv or wildsafarilive.com and join the #safariLIVE conversation on Twitter and email questions@wildearth.tv.

Saturday, 26 March 2016

The Cat Report 18th - 25th March


Saturday the 19th of March

Late on the sunset safari Brent managed to catch up with one of the Birmingham boys. It is not immediately clear if this is the same individual, that was spotted with the somewhat unenthusiastic Nkuhuma lioness, the previous day. After some debate with the viewer it is agreed this is not the same lion, which means two of the Birmingham males could potentially be on Djuma.

borminghma male 19 mar pm.jpg
(Birmingham male, Screenshot Credit: Hélène van Dijk‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)


Monday the 21st of March

The early hours of the morning were filled with the resonating roars of a male lion coalition. The safariLIVE crew leaped into action and shortly after the dazzling sun broke the crisp morning air Jamie came upon 3 of the Birmingham male lions. The lions looked less than regal and it seems they had potentially been in conflict, either amongst each other or with the Selati males, the dominant coalition to the north of Djuma. The trio of trouble spent some time enjoying a good roll around in something less than desirable before heading off to the west.

birmingham male 21 mar am.jpg
(Birmingham male, Screenshot Credit: Linda McCaslin, safariLIVE, Djuma)‎

Later on that afternoon, all 5 of the reigning coalition were found on a large buffalo kill in Arathusa. The boys are back, the theory of an inter-coalition battle between the Birmingham’s and the Selati’s was definitely strengthened by their dilapidated appearance. At least the buffalo kill ensures that the lions will be well fed for the coming days allowing them time to recover.

birmingham male 21 mar pm.jpg
(Birmingham male, Screenshot Credit: Kaarina Pietiäinen‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Tuesday the 22nd of March

The following day the boys are found again fat and flat. Still on Arathusa and in sight and smell of their buffalo kill. The remain in this state for the duration of both the sunrise and sunset safaris.

birmingham male 22 mar pm.jpg
(Birmingham males, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain‎, safariLIVE, Arathusa)

To the north Brent is patrolling the northern boundary hoping for any sign of a leopard. He spotted a large breeding herd of buffalo crossing north and decided to catch up with them while keeping an eye out. After spending a while surrounded by moving buffalo the throng tapers to the individuals bringing up the rear. Mere seconds after the last mother and calf crosses a large male leopard is spotted slinking through the lime green bush. It’s Mvula and his lean appearance meant he was hunting. He went into stalk mode eyeing out a young and still wobbly buffalo calf. His stalk attempt failed as he was unable to get close enough without risking certain detection. He then waited and watched carefully before following the herd into thick bush beyond Djuma’s northern boundary.

mvula 32 mar pm.jpg
(Mvula, Screenshot Credit: Joshua Gross, safariLIVE, Djuma)‎

Wednesday the 23rd of March

Another big cat morning with one of the Birmingham males being found flat cat in the middle of the road. The morning was wet and chilly, he looked less than regal with a dirty, matted main and less than enthusiastic energy about him. He gave a few disgruntled looks at passing vehicles and slept uneasily. A report over the radio indicate that his 4 coalition mate are not far from his location, sure enough after a few more minutes of rest he slowly made his way towards them. The boys then spent the rest of the sunrise safari sleeping off the night's activities.

birmingham male 23 mar am.jpg
(Birmingham male, Screenshot Credit: Claire Armendinger, safariLIVE, Djuma)‎

The safariLIVE crew went out in search of the coalition again on the sunset safari, however, when Brent arrived at their last known location there were quite a few ellie tracks, soon after he found the male lions tracks crossing our southern boundary. The conclusion is clear, the boys were chased out by the elephants. But this drives real surprise came much later in the form of a serval Jamie spotted while on the way back to camp. We rushed to go live again and watched the elusive yet very relaxed cat hunt until it eventually slunk off into the darkness.

serval 23 mr pm.jpg
(Serval, Screenshot Credit: Agnes Zsiga‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Thursday the 24th of March

All started off still and calm, leopard tracks were found in all areas of the property and both Brent and Jamie had been tracking the elusive cats since the waking moments of the day. As luck would have it minutes before the sunset safari came to a close each presenter came upon a leopard. After a closer inspection it turns out to be Karula and her daughter Shadow. Both confirmed mothers and within a few hundred meters of each other. Shadow stalked impala on Sandy patch as Karula patrolled a few old haunts in and around the Vuyatela lodge, but not without stopping by the safariLIVE crew camp and Final Control.

karula 24 mar pm.jpg
(Karula, Screenshot Credit: Kaarina Pietiäinen‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Thursday, 24 March 2016

#EagleWatch 2016 Has Begun

It's that time of year again when the bald eagles set about raising the next generation of fliers. The Pittsburgh Hays Eagle nest has already had two hatches this breeding season. Mom and Dad Hays are keeping a close watch and are doing well to defend their babies. They have one remaining egg, which is expected to hatch on March 26.

The Pittsburgh Hays Bald Eagle Nest

#EagleWatch continues with the wait on Blair (female) and Taylor (male) at the Eagles4Kids nest. They're incubating two eggs this year, and WE are hopeful they will be successful this time around.

The Eagles4Kids Nest

The Delta 2 pair, brought to us through the Hancock Wildlife Foundation have a brood of two eggs too. Ma laid their first egg on March 10 and their second on March 14. Continue the conversation as we wait for more news from the nests via Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #EagleWatch, and keep an eye on the cams at wildearth.tv.

Monday, 21 March 2016

#safariLIVE Viewer Profile: Kids of the Live Drives

The kids of the live drives, are not limited to the cubs, calves, lambs, pups and chicks of the wildlife we see on Djuma and Arathusa. Curious, humorous and eager to learn, the human children who join us for safariLIVE always have something to say. From the sweet Gracie in Ohio, to the kids of Virginia Beach, WE have come to expect their wonder and enthusiasm for safari.

Scott pours chocolate milk for Gracie at their Arathusa Airstrip tea party.

Erik Moore, viewer and the force behind a collaboration between Landstown High School and WildEarth, saw the value in bringing the sunset drive to kids. He and Krissy Sanderlin, Instructional Technology Specialists at the school, have created a program at the school to include safariLIVE in their lesson plans. "Although I have done most of the communicating and 'found' the stream initially, Krissy has been involved in every aspect of the planning and implementation here in Virginia Beach," says Erik.

Hyena cubs at play during drive.

"I discovered safariLIVE purely by chance on YouTube while searching for live wildlife feeds for biology classes," he explains. When he first found it, the Djuma cam was on prior to the sunset drive. He left the feed as he went about his work, but a few minutes later, he heard a woman speaking on the feed. That was safariLIVE's Jamie Paterson discussing a sighting. At first, Erik thought it was an ad, but soon realised it was not stopping and Jamie had started up the vehicle. "Needless to say, after a few minutes I realised that she was answering questions from viewers. To prove to myself that it was live, I submitted a question in the chat on YouTube."

After they had followed safariLIVE for several weeks, they "began to see tremendous educational value in this LIVE platform". "We thought it was engaging, provided real-time educational feedback from experts, and broke down the walls of the classroom by giving the students an opportunity to travel somewhere that most will never have the opportunity to go in their lifetime."

Curious calf trying out his trunk.

And the reaction from the kids?  "While explaining the live drive and the process of submitting questions to the students, only a few students showed more than the usual amount of teenage disinterest. However, once they participated in the actual live portion of the drive, they became very much engaged and excited. Students who normally do not participate in class are seen busily writing questions for the presenters!"

The teachers who have brought this virtual safari experience to their classes, "are amazed at how well their students behave and the level of participation and engagement". "We are even getting comments from staff that they are finding students talking about their experience outside of the classroom. Many students have told us that they are tuning in to the stream on their own time," says Erik.

Erik and Krissy believe the safariLIVE stream is an "online activity that adds real-world and personalised elements of instruction to the students’ studies of curriculum related concepts and also allows students to develop cultural understanding and global awareness". They gain the valuable experience of a safari in the wild with the addition of this wonderful technology from half the world away. safariLIVE has become the biggest classroom in the world, for all our viewers, irrespective of age, location and learning curve.

If you have an interesting story to tell about your #safariLIVE experience, and would like to be featured in a future #safariLIVE Viewer Profile, contact us with your contributions, photo and video submissions at mystory@wildearth.tv. You could be interviewed next!

Saturday, 19 March 2016

The Cat Report 11th - 18th March

The Cat Report 11th - 18th March


Friday the 11th of March

Roaring week lay ahead for the crew at safariLIVE! It all kicked off the sunset safari with the long missed Styx pride, they were found on the southern boundary of Djuma. Fat and flat they lazed in the wake of a newly deceased buffalo. An impressive feat for the 3 lionesses, who then fed until the point of bursting.


styx lioness 11 mar pm.jpg
(Styx Lioness, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)


Saturday the 12th of March

The kill was made short work of and when safari guide Brent, returned the next morning on the sunrise safari only the stomach contents and rib cage remained at the scene. He followed the tracks carefully until eventually he came upon the 3 Styx ladies looking rounder than ever on Arathusa. It became quite clear from their spherical appearance that all 3 could indeed be eating for two! The presence of some extra mammary swelling on their fluffy white underbellies was also a clear indication that lactation will soon begin and the pitter-patter of lion cub paws could soon fill the bush.

styx pride 12 mar am.jpg
(Styx lionesses, Screenshot Credit: Roy Smith, safariLIVE, Djuma)‎


Sunday the 13th of March

Early on the sunrise drive safari guide Jamie managed to relocate the Styx pride yet again, this time on the boundary between Djuma and Arathusa. However, they were not alone, an incredibly brave little reptile defied all the odds by fearlessly maneuvering between the sleeping lions before performing a stunt of epic proportion. This tiny Speke’s hinge tortoise managed to wedge in between a lionesses front paws with no detection. Tortoise then spent some time there, no doubt contemplating the reckless life choice before scampering away at top speed when the lioness next rolled over (watch video here)

Brent returned to the lovely ladies later on that afternoon, the spent the remainder of the daylight hours fast asleep. Once the sun had set and the day cooled off the got up and slowly meandered their way off into the darkness.
styx lioness 13 mar am.jpg
(Styx lioness, Screenshot Credit: Claire Armendinger‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

On the other side of the reserve Brent had managed to catch up with the Queen of Djuma Karula. Looking more beautiful than ever in the radiant rising sun she stalked her way through the bush looking for any hunting opportunity. She’s moved her den away from the drainage culvert on one of the busy main access roads, much to the relief of the WE crew. It’s proposed that she has moved them to the south away from the ever increasing hyaena activity on Djuma over the past weeks.

karula 13 mar am.jpg
(Karula female leopard, Screenshot Credit: Ann Del Tredici‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Wednesday the 16th of March

The safariLIVE crew is often up in the early hours of the morning, and there is no better way to wake up than to the sound of roaring lions right outside your camp! James managed to catch up with the Nkuhuma ladies, wide awake and hunting on quarantine clearings. One of the lionesses made a spectacular dash after some wildebeest and after a cheetah like sprint and some high pace driving we managed to catch up with her as she collapsed in exhaustion. She remained static until the rest of her pride mates had caught up. The 4 lionesses then stalked, pounced and gambled about playing freely until eventually going flat in some thick bush (watch video here)

nkuhumalioness 16 mar am.jpg
(Nkuhuma lioness, Screenshot Credit: Claire Armendinger‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

The ladies were then relocated later on during the sunset safari. Still looking a little on the lean side but flat as ever. We stayed with the magnificent lionesses until the final moments of the evening drive when they eventually decided to get up and move off.

nkuhuma lioness.jpg
(Nkuhuma lioness, Screenshot Credit: Hélène van Dijk‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Thursday the 17th of March

As the sunrise safari opened on this cloudy morning WE came across the still skinny Nkuhuma pride. They lazed about for the first part of the live drive before rising up and slowly moving along the road. Unlike with the Styx lionesses the other day, when these ladies came across two unlucky tortoises the game was on. Yet after playing, what can only be described as a bit of lion soccer, both reptiles were left unscathed.

nkuhuma pride 17 mar am.jpg
(Nkuhuma pride, Screenshot Credit: Linda McCaslin‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Later on that evening WE found them again in the exact same place. After some lazing about the ever increasing  hunger took over and they proceeded to make their way carefully through the bush for the remainder of the sunset safari. Brent followed them closely until they eventually worked their way into a very thick block on Arathusa after numerous stalks. It was decided to allow the ladies their space in the hopes they will make a kill soon.

nkuhuma lioness 17 mar pm.jpg
(Nkuhuma lioness, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Friday the 18th of March

Of course the week couldn’t end on a better note with the return of the 5th Nkuhuma lioness in the company of one of the Birmingham males. The amorous pair were found not far from the WE camp and between bouts of mating focussed mainly on hunting. They made their way slowly east chasing anything that came across their paths before eventually going flat and resting from a particularly energetic evening.

nkuhuma lioness and bboy 18 mar am.jpg
(Birmingham male lion [front] & Nkuhuma lioness [back], Screenshot Credit: Claire Armendinger, safariLIVE, Djuma)‎

That however, was by no means the peak of the action this morning. Shortly before the end of the sunrise safari pandemonium broke loose with the return of the Investec pack of wild dogs. Already covered in blood and looking rather drenched after the morning rain they bounded through the reserve giving everyone a run for the money, after much entertainment giving all the guides the run around Jamie was finally able to catch up with them. They trotted along the road playing with each other and bounding through as many puddles as possible before eventually making their way out of our traverse as the morning drive came to a close.

investec wild dog 18 mar am.jpg
(Investec pack of Wild dog, Screenshot Credit: Roy Smith, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Monday, 14 March 2016

#safariLIVE Viewer Profile: Wilson's Wildlife Wanderlust


Holly Wilson is going to be embarking on her next trip to the African continent this August. So far she has seen South Africa, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe. She made these trips with her late husband Howie from 2001 and 2006. "We discovered that the WildEarth drives became an extension to our trips and the next best thing to being on a live drive!"

Holly and her late husband Howie (left) and friends.
"I have watched Marc (Weiner) doing his try-out drive and Karula raising Mixo and Induna and many other cubs," she says. Holly and Howie experienced so many memorable animal encounters together. The live drives are now giving her the opportunity to learn about and experience even more. "This drive is so informative as well as entertaining and it is even better than a real drive as WE have come to follow and know many of the animals from Karula to the hyena."

Female leopard and cub at Londolozi, photo by Holly Wilson

Since Howie's passing in 2014 after a long illness, Holly has continued to watch the drives, the Pete's Pond cam and the Arathusa cam. She will be staying at Arathusa, and hopes to see the animals that have entertained her for so many years, in person. She feels a deep connection, not only to the live drives and the animals, but the land itself. "Being in Africa is like coming home for me. I feel a pull to return and be grounded in the earth there."

Coffee break at Londolozi. Howie Wilson (far right), photo by Holly Wilson

Holly's enthusiasm for the drives and the safari experience is infectious. She participates in the chat discussions as 'Savuti', named for a tented camp she visited in Botswana. "My favorite moments on the drives have been watching Karula's cubs grow up. I loved watching Mixo and Induna play with each other and with Karula and I have loved sightings where there have been multiple generations of leopards! Following the animals for so long gives a depth to the safari that can't be had on a live safari trip!"

If you have an interesting story to tell about your #safariLIVE experience, and would like to be featured in a future #safariLIVE Viewer Profile, contact us with your contributions, photo and video submissions at mystory@wildearth.tv. You could be interviewed next!

Friday, 11 March 2016

The Weekly Cat Report 5th - 11th March and Leopard cub update!

The Weekly Cat Report 5th - 11th March

Saturday the 5th of March

An incredible start to the week! We sadly said goodbye to presenter Scott Dyson and director Nicki Austin, but as the magical pair enjoyed the last of their endless safari on Djuma private game reserve, none other than Karula came out to send them off in true bush fashion. Another exciting moment as fresh suckle marks were spotted on her white, fluffy belly. This is a clear indication that her cubs are alive and well!

karula 5 mar pm.jpg
(Karula female leopard with clear suckle marks, Screenshot Credit: Kaarina Pietiäinen‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Sunday the 6th of March

The Nkuhumas were found today and yet again they are one member short. The ladies were flat but not looking too fat this evening. James sat with the ladies until the final moments of the sunset safari. Despite the promising yawns and leg stretches the ladies could barely manage a few meters before collapsing in exhaustion. It was proposed that they may have hunted during the night yet no discovery was made of them the next day until their tracks were discovered crossing out of the property.

nkuhuma lioness 6 mar pm.jpg
(Nkuhuma lioness, Screenshot Credit: Hélène van Dijk‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)


Tuesday the 8th of March

Another wonderful afternoon is spent with the lions. It started off when safariLIVE presenter Jamie located one of the Birmingham male lions. She trailed him for a period before he plunged into a warthog burrow head first and one large dust bath later emerged with a dead warthog clutched firmly in his jaws. The warthog had perished in the burrow prior to the lion finding it and is suspected to be a rather sickly individual that has been seen recently on safariLIVE. The lion fetched his kill in the shade of a thick bush where he began to pick at the carcass. As the sun sank beyond the mountains he was then joined by 4 of the Nkuhuma ladies. The undesirable kill was abandoned and he tagged along for the remainder of the sunset drive. Not far from this location Brent caught up with the 5th of the Nkuhuma ladies. It turns out to be Amber eyes, she called to her pride repeatedly into the darkness (watch video here). Reports indicate that the rest of her pride was moving directly towards her.

nkuhuma lionesses 8 mar 2016.jpg
(Nkuhuma pride lionesses, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

An update on the Leopard cubs of 2016

Karula has been spotted a number of times this week in the company of her two new bundles of joy! WE haven’t been able to secure any images of the cubs as of yet, this is due to the restrictions that have been in place on entering sightings with this beautiful cat. It has been decided amongst expert guides belonging to WildEarth, guides from Djuma as well as Djuma management that the cubs should not be viewed intentionally by any vehicle. Once she has been spotted this needs to be called in and the area zoned so as to give these precious new additions the time they need to develop. Once the cubs are of an age where they are self sufficient enough to escape from a situation in which they feel uncomfortable we will be able to view them on safariLIVE, there is no clear time frame for this but WE all are looking forward to seeing the balls of fluff in the near future and from there, watching them grow and develop.

Karula however is not only a mother again, but a grandmother too! Reports from Arathusa indicate that Shadow has also given birth and is currently at a den site in a thick drainage line on Arathusa. There has only been one confirmed sighting of this elusive cat and her new babies, a large area of the drainage has been sectioned off until the time is right for the cubs to be viewed. Great and exciting times are ahead for the leopards of safariLIVE!

shadow.jpg
(Shadow female leopard, Image Credit: Diane Wales-Baillie, Aperture Africa, Arathusa)

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Daylight Saving Changes safariLIVE Times

Daylight Saving means schedule changes for viewers.

The United States and Canada will experience Daylight Saving at 02:00 on March 13, 2016. This means they'll be setting their clocks an hour forward. The start times for safariLIVE will remain the same at 05:30 - 08:30 Sunrise and 16:00 - 19:00 Sunset CAT; which will broadcast within Daylight Savings at 23:30 ET and 20:30 PT for sunrise drive, and at 10:00 ET and 07:00 PT for sunset drive.

Please join us for more wildlife adventures at wildsafarilive.com, YouTube and wildearth.tv, with the safariLIVE team at these adjusted times. Remember to send your questions and comments through to questions@wildearth.tv or #safariLIVE on Twitter.

Monday, 7 March 2016

WE Celebrate International Women’s day

WE Celebrate International Women’s day

Tomorrow (Tuesday 8th of March) is international women’s day and WE want to celebrate it by dedicating a special Sunset drive to all things female!

womens day nk lioness 2.jpg
(Nkuhuma lioness, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

We’d like to focus on the elegant and feminine fauna and flora that WE find spread all over our wonderful wilderness. Please send through any questions you’d like answered on the female survivors of the great African wild.

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(Female Golden Orb Web Spider, Screenshot Credit: Marieke van Nistelrooij‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

WE’d also like for you to send us any incredible stories about women that have inspired you along with any special words for these ladies to show how much you appreciate them. Our amazing presenters will try to give you and your special lady a safariLIVE shout out!

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(Karula Female leopard, Screenshot Credit: Kaarina Pietiäinen‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Finally we’d also like for you to send us a wish list for the afternoon including all your favourite wild ladies on Djuma and Arathusa. From the largest elephant, the most resilient hyaena to the tiniest of the birds and the most fashionable of the insects. WE want to show all and appreciate all that is feminine! Here’s to the wonderful women of the bush!  

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(Hyaena female, Screenshot Credit: Roy Smith‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

#safariLIVE Viewer Profile: The Girl and The Hippo


Hayden Turner told us this story in 2014, about Lorene and her little girl Sienna, and it captured many hearts. The little girl has Down's Syndrome and had struggled with speech.

"My 5 year old daughter has a hard time talking. Words are not easy for her. She crawled on my lap one morning while I was watching the waterhole and we saw the hippo. She loves animals as much as I do and became very excited.  I told her it was a 'hippo' and she repeated it clearly."

Sienna and Ember

Lorene and her family added a daughter through adoption, named Ember, to their number in 2011, and are in the process of giving another special little girl a home right now. The 6 year old girls are active, loving and share a great bond since they were brought together. Lorene and her husband Thad have documented their journey on a blog called Adding a Senti, all about the struggles of raising and growing their family.

She has long held a dream to go on safari. "For as long as I can remember I have always dreamed of traveling to Africa and going on safari," she says.  "As I grew up and got married I still carried thoughts of being able to see all my favorite animals in the wild.  I've read every safari story book I can find."

Sienna has inherited her mother Lorene's love for animals.

After becoming a mother to three boys and a building a "busy life", she put thoughts of Africa out of her mind. "Until I found Africam and later WildEarth. I would be glued to the video stream of the waterhole. I spent many nights trying to 'get a ride' on the drive vehicle when there was only limited amount of space via the internet. It was wonderful to be able to bring my dreams back and experience it even via computer screen."

When Lorene read on a Facebook post that the new and improved drives would be starting, she knew she had another chance to experience the wild from the comfort of her own home, without having to leave her family.

"The live safaris are a window to another part of this beautiful world we all share. It is the chance every day to see things that most people would never get to see and experience. I learn new things constantly - as do my daughters. It also allows me to join up with a community of fellow safari viewers and connect with people who in my daily life I would not have the chance to meet. I just can't say enough about how much I value these safaris."

If you have an interesting story to tell about your #safariLIVE experience, and would like to be featured in a future #safariLIVE Viewer Profile, contact us with your contributions, photo and video submissions at mystory@wildearth.tv. You could be interviewed next!

Friday, 4 March 2016

The Cat Report 27 February - 2 March

The Cat Report 27 February - 2 March

Saturday the 27th of February

Exciting news from the bush as Scott managed to catch up with the new unknown male leopard seen exploring new territory around Buffelshoek dam. Camera Operator Wium (aka “eagle eyes”) managed to spot our skittish new companion as Scott made his daily rounds through the bush on the sunset drive. The cat is not yet totally comfortable with the presence of the vehicles and soon made his way into the shaded, dense thickets of bush. Scott kept well back and eventually we were able to get a great view of this reclusive leopard. Later on the bush telegraph it is made known that this male is affectionately called “Gijima” which means “run,” he was also observed scent marking in the area, a clear indication that he is making moves into the territory formerly held by another safariLIVE favourite, Mvula.

Gijima 27 feb.jpg
(Gijima male Leopard, Screenshot Credit: Jan Watkins‎, safriLIVE, Djuma)

Sunday the 28th of February

Another fluffy spotted friend joined us on the sunset drive with presenter Scott Dyson, taking the form of Tingana, the dominant male on Djuma and the eastern section of Arathusa. A number of small highly hysterical birds lead Scott to the leopard who was very fat and flat enjoying a little cat nap on the side of the road under a shady bush. Reports also came through about the tracks of the formidable Anderson male leopard being found on the western edges of the property. Scott went through to check it out but alas the only sign of the large cat was the paw prints he had left behind.

Tingana 28 feb pm.jpg
(Tingana male Leopard, Screenshot Credit: Kaarina Pietiäinen‎, safariLIVE, Arathusa)

Monday the 29th of February

Chaos reigned, on this early morning sunrise drive as the Sands half tail pack of wild dog made their way through Djuma. The dogs coursed through the bush at full pace terrorising any and all that came across their path! The most terrified of all being one very unlucky female hyena affectionately named the “Scar-Back female” by safariLIVE viewers. The action all unfolded after the dogs had made yet another one of their brutal kills and the resident hyena clan decided this would be a good opportunity to make off with some food. The hyena’s were caught off guard and the dogs proceeded to make quite the example of Scar-Back in a show of dominance and payback for the stolen kill. Presenter James Hendry was present and didn’t miss a second of the high and disturbing action as the dogs chased and bit Scar-Back relentlessly. In amongst the melee a surprise was lurking in the form of the rarely seen black backed jackal. He payed no mind to the feuding dogs and hyenas as he slunk between the apex predators casually taking his pick of the forgotten kill. In true dog fashion, as soon as it began it was over and the dogs sped off to the north into Buffelshoek.

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(Sands Pack Wild Dog, Screenshot Credit: Katrina Kissinger‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Later on the Nkuhuma pride of lions were discovered by Scott, simply relaxing near to the Buffelshoek dam. The ladies were fat bellied and flat when they were discovered lazing in the light of an incredible setting sun. Once the heat of the day had subsided the lions were up and slowly made their way down to the water’s edge for a drink, once their thirst was quenched it was back to bed and for the remainder of the sunset drive they lazed near the water as if enjoying a relaxing beach holiday.

nkuhuma lioness 29 feb pm.jpg
(Nkuhuma Lioness, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)  

Tuesday the 1st of March

Yet more excitement this past week as James discovers one of the Nkuhuma lionesses in the company of one of the once young and extremely good-looking Birmingham boys. Dominant coalition life it tough and after a few months of being the dominant males it clearly shows on the face of this individual. It is not know why the pair was travelling together, perhaps for company or maybe more amorous reasons. The pair were found flat in the middle of Cheetah cutline, but after James spent a few minutes with them they were up and off, mobile north. At the boundary between Djuma and Buffelshoek the male scent marked and the female continued on to our northern neighbors property. Unsure of what to do the male waited for a brief moment in the center of the road before following his consort. Once the lions had crossed, James travelled down Buffelshoek cutline and on the back of some information provided by Stef, finds a well concealed leopard kill on the boundary. There’s no evidence of the killer, but suspicions about his identity all centre around Gijima.

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(Nkuhuma Lioness, Birmingham male, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Wednesday the 2nd of March

Lion tracks all over the show! Both Scott and James find evidence of the big cat’s everywhere! On Buffelshoek cutline there are tracks of an adult male leopard crossing onto Djuma. There is no confirmation of who the individual may be. To the south Scott finds adult male lion tracks, he follows closely and eventually came upon the same Birmingham male that was spotted the day before. He’s looking a little the worse for wear this morning, not that he looked too great last time, and is flat in the rising sunlight. No one was able to figure out how he got there and why he was there considering the evening before he had crossed some distance away. He remains flat for the morning but by the time the sun is setting he has vanished.

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(Birmingham male Lion, Screenshot Credit: Claire Armendinger‎, safariLIVE, Djuma)

Thursday the 3rd of March

One of the Birmingham boys has been spotted to the east of Djuma. Updates indicate that he has had a limp for the last while and was observed still limping this morning. It seems he spent the morning doing what lions do best, sleeping and recovering. He got up at one point to have a drink and roared out his dominance before taking refuge in some nearby shade and nodding off.

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(Birmingham male Lion, Image Credit: Andrew Khosa Cheetah Plains, Torchwood)