As many of you will know by now, our great Queen, Karula, has been absent from our LIVE safaris for just over two months. With no trace of her being reported anywhere the chances of ever finding our beloved queen dwindle each day she is gone. At 13 years old Karula has certainly lived a full and happy life in the wilderness. She is one of the most triumphant leopards to have ever lived in the Sabi Sands, successfully raising 10 cubs to independence.
(Image Credit: Tayla McCurdy, Sabi Sand, Djuma)
It is possible she may have moved territories and might be denning with a new litter of cubs as you read this. However, this is extremely unlikely as it is unusual for a female leopard to leave her 17 month old cubs, Hosana and Xongile, to fend for themselves. These two cubs were not quite ready to take the wilderness head on when Karula disappeared, yet their progress has been a cause of hope for many.
It may be that Karula was taken unaware by a foreign male leopard, an angry male lion or her old arch enemy, the hyena. She may have fallen to the same fate as the late Kwatile and been bitten by a venomous snake. With no trace of her anywhere and with no carcass, it is difficult to say for sure.
(Image Credit” Louise Pavid, Sabi Sand, Djuma)
In her absence WE have decided to celebrate our great Queen with a Fireside Chat to be held on Sunday 28 May in the last 15 minutes of the sunset safari. Presenters James, Jamie and Tristan are going to relive their favourite moments spent with the her spotted royal highness.
On top of that WE have pieced together a look at Karula’s life over the years, as she graced the safariLIVE cameras with her presence.
WE have produced a special Karula T shirt and for the next 6 days you can buy it here: teespring.com/karula All proceeds will go towards more exciting improvements at WildEarth.
Join us, this Sunday, 28 May to celebrate the life of Queen Karula in true royal fashion!
Please see the table below for Fireside Chat start times in your time zone:
Sunset Safari Fireside Chat