It has been a great week at Leopard Mountain with some unusual animal activities being seen out on drive.
Groups of male and female lions have been sighted close to Leopard Mountain. We had a thrilling time watching a group of lionesses unsuccessfully hunting warthog one morning; however their practice obviously paid off as that afternoon we found them at a watering hole covered in blood.
Some males also provided an entertaining sighting as the guests watched them climb into a small Marula tree where they settled down and enjoyed the view from above. On another occasion Chase found the same group of males sharing a tree. While watching them blunder around in the branches all the males landed up trying to sleep on the same branch which broke under their combined weight and all the lions fell out the tree!
Signs of leopard activity are to be seen everywhere but because of the large amount of rain that we have had the grass is very long making sightings of the cats difficult. While facing backwards talking to his guests the other day, Andrew spotted a Leopard spying them from the grass. He quickly reversed and most of the guests managed to get a brief glimpse of the Leopard as it moved between the grass.
The night drive produced an unusually relaxed large spotted genet who sat staring into a bush meters from the vehicle. After posing beautifully for about ten minutes his plan was revealed when he suddenly pounced into the bush and caught a mouse. With his spoils in his mouth he then ran into the night.
Guests have been rewarded, while driving to the lodge, with remarkable sightings of a female Cheetah and her two cubs. They have been hanging out on the main road hunting herds of Impala.
In bird news, a pair of Whalberg Eagles were seen mobbing a pair of Martial Eagles in a tree in front of the lodge. This occurred right in the middle of high tea providing great entertainment for the guests. Long-Tailed Widowbirds, White-Winged Widowbirds and Red-Billed Queleas have been seen in masses. Recently Ivor went out on a birding drive with a very enthusiastic guest, between the two of them they managed to count 39 species of birds in about 2 hours in very windy conditions; this included 2 “lifers”, birds that they had never seen in their lives before, a Black Cuckooshrike and a Croaking Cisticola.
We look forward to a festive week in the bush.
Until next week…
The Ranger Team