The New Year has begun with another 30 odd mm of rain which has made the bush even greener if that were at all possible! The flowers are all out and the animals have loved all the foliage around to feed on, the elephants especially. There have been elephants all over the property in the last week some herds numbering well into the 60's.
Leopard sightings have also been great with a few individuals on the property that haven't been seen in a while. Thandi, Shadow's sister was found at Baboon Pan in the east on a baby impala kill. The visual was not great as she was lying under a Transvaal Saffron so no real chance of getting a good photo there! We waited a long while but she wasn't going anywhere so we left her.
Driving in the eats of our traversing one day we saw a huge herd of impala and made our way there to view them. Almost as we got there the monkeys started going ballistic in the background alarm calling incredibly loudly. The impala took their cue from the vervets and also started alarm calling. There had to be something (a predator) in the area and after driving around for a few more minutes we found out why. There was a young male leopard in the drainage line. We identified him as Martin but unfortunately with the racket going on around him he didn't really want to come out of the bush he was hiding in. Even two Wahlberg's eagles started alarm calling and looking down at the leopard below them!
Back in the west the territorial male, Tyson was seen on the firebreak and he then proceeded to give us an interesting sighting as he walked along scent marking. It is possible that he was following a female because he would stop at certain trees and rub himself on them whilst salivating hugely. We have yet to see where that is going.
Nyeleti and her cub are still doing very well and when last they were seen was going south off Saseke Road. They looked as though they may have been hunting but unfortunately before we could find out they disappeared into the bush.
On Monday 12 January we found Salayexe on an impala kill up in a tree lying peacefully. She hadn't eaten too much from it so it's more than likely that she managed to take it down in the early hours of this morning. We left her still sitting in the tree with not much else going on and hardly a movement from her.
Another great thing that has happened at Simbambili is the arrival of a huge crocodile in Serengeti pan. He must be at least 5 metres long and looking at the tracks his foot was almost the same size as my boot, a lot larger than my hand.
The bird sightings are now magnificent as well with all the migrants back from their various destinations. All in all the game viewing just hasn't eased up and continues to get better with each passing day.
Regards The Simbambili Team