This last week has been incredibly productive. Here is some of the exciting bush news.
Cheetahs have treated us to some amazing events with the male one afternoon vocalizing near a dam we followed the sound for some time until we got visual of him walking down the road he seemed anxious and was making sure every tree in his territory was scent marked, shortly after we could hear another cheetah calling and off he went to investigate. The next morning we made our way to the area we last saw him, along the way we watched a herd of elephant wallowing in the mud with the baby’s really having a blast, once in the area we found tracks of a female cheetah and followed which took us past a herd of buffalo and finally to a female cheetah with two cubs relaxing in an open plain, this explains why the male was so anxious. Later that day we found the female without her cubs and the male calling about 400m away, with the cubs being old enough to look after themselves it’s possible their mother has chased them off and is looking for a mate.
The lionesses are covering massive distances in search of the males which are the ones playing hard to get. Some of the sightings have been incredible watching them hunt and learning from their mistakes as they grow up. One morning some zebra were watching the females relaxing on a rocky outcrop the one female got up and half heartedly stalked them, the zebras were not bothered with her as they knew she did not have the element of surprise. On another occasion we watched them playing in the riverbed, while the rest of the animals gave an orchestra of alarm calls, over time they will learn to be more stealthy and work together.
We have also had some other truly remarkable elephant sightings. A breeding herd has been hanging out close to the lodge, with a large Bull following close behind. With all the fresh growth and water around at the moment the elephants are having a really good time. The new baby in the herd is doing very well, we often find it playing in amongst the legs of the adults, the herd doesn’t mind the baby’s mischievous antics too much, only giving it a light brush with a trunk every now and again to keep it in line.
Until next week…
The Ranger Team