Friday, 14 April 2017

The Cat Report: 07 April - 14 April

Friday, 07 April

WE paid another visit to the Nkuhuma pride to see how they had gotten on with their meal. Having spent most of the day feasting on the diminishing buffalo kill they were stretched out contentedly, stomachs expanded to the maximum, breathing heavily to release the excess heat generated from another scorching day in Sabi Sands.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Saturday, 08 April

Two spots on Gowrie Cutline gave away the stealthy Mvula on the Sunrise Safari. Having surreptitiously concealed his impala kill in the long grass, the tired old chap had taken his chances on a morning nap.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Meanwhile our dominant male leopard, Tingana, sought his own victory on Arathusa. Flat on his stomach in hunting posture, he had watched a herd of impala until they spotted him. Undeterred, Tignana moved on - expressing both disdain and declaring dominance with a low deep saw.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Saturday ended with the Nkuhumas who had all but finished their buffalo kill. After being thoroughly amused by the cubs being scrappy as to who should get the leftovers, we left them bonding and grooming under a waxing moon.

 [Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Sunday, 09 April

Xongile’s search for her mother led her to Ribbon’s den on Sunday morning. A potentially dangerous place to be, the clever girl avoided risk by climbing up a nearby tree.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

There was much excitement when, less than a kilometre away, WE chanced upon her brother Hosana, who was distressing a family of warthog on their way to wallow in some water. It was clear from his robust appearance that he had been successful in feeding off the smaller offerings of the bush following his mother’s disappearance.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Tingana was caught red handed in a tree with Mvula’s stolen impala, with two opportunistic hyenas parked off in the shade below hoping for some meaty droppings.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Monday, 10 April

On the sunrise safari WE were treated to a magnificent sighting of Thandi and her cub Thamba posing together on a fallen tree, with a recent kill of theirs stashed nearby.  Like most of Thandi’s offspring, Thamba has grown into an absolutely beautiful young male leopard.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]  

Xongile was spotted in the morning on Vuyatela Dam, looking like she was on the hunt for more terrapin. Later she demonstrated her improving hunting skills by successfully catching a water monitor lizard.
[Screenshot: Ann Del Tredici‏]

The day ended with Tingana (who had napped and cleaned for most of the afternoon) out on patrol of his large territory.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Tuesday, 11 April

WE had an exciting start to the day when James discovered lion tracks belonging to BB Boys Nhenha and Mfumo.

Thandi and her not so little cub Thamba were found again on Chitwa, still with their kill. Thamba was not as playful as he had been the day before and Thandi got irritated by the flies and snarling when they nipped her nose and ears.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Leopard tracks were also discovered. WE suspected them to belong to Xongile following in Tingana’s footprints from a distance.

[Screenshot: James Richard]

Byron found Nhenha and Mfumo fast asleep near Galago Waterhole. They must have been tired from their evening patrol and barely stirred when a young elephant bull passed by.

 [Screenshot: Lily Brown]

Wednesday, 12 April

Leopards Inkanyeni and her son Vutomi were found hiding up two trees, having been chased by a pack of wild dogs. While the chances of a vicious conflict had been high, the wild dogs moved on and the cats climbed down from their trees. Both cats appeared to be suffering from crushing fatigue, as common in the aftermath of a huge shock. Vutomi especially looked exhausted by the incident.

[Screenshot: Jennifer ]

Hosana was found at Twin Dams, looking like he might be hunting terrapins. In uncharacteristic leopard hunting technique,  he made a run at a herd of impala who were all too big for him.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown ]

Thursday, 13 April

Brent started the day with good news and bad news. Good news being that the royal siblings Xongile and Hosana have reunited and the bad news that  they had crossed out of our area and we would not be seeing them.

Tingana, who had been on the move a lot this week, appeared to be taking it easy after a busy night patrolling and marking his territory.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]  

We spent some time following the Nkuhuma pride along the main road MMM before they gave us the slip and disappeared with the fading of light into long grass.

[Screenshot: Lily Brown]  

Friday, 14 April

Thandi and Thamba were found on Chitwa finishing off a steenbok kill.  They shared a tender moment post meal before crossing over into Milwanini.

[Screenshot: Sherrie ]

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