Simbambili Game Lodge
A word from our rangers.
5 to 11 April 2010
Leopard Diaries 5th-11th April 2010
This week has seen us receive a considerable amount of rain, with a single thunderstorm on Wednesday afternoon resulting in just over 70mm of rain falling in the northern Sabi Sand. This has had a marked effect on the vegetation with fresh growth and renewal taking place and the waterholes all being fill to brimming.
The wildlife has also prospered after the welcome rain, with a very late new born impala lamb being seen on Sunday. The presence of the Tsalala lion pride on the property for the entire week has provided us with some very good lion sightings. The buffalo numbers have dropped as the three herds present last week have all moved off our traversing area. Leopard and elephant have been seen regularly, with the young female leopard Mbilo providing the bulk of the leopard sightings during the week.
As previously mentioned, Mbilo has provided the main leopard sightings of the week. Early one morning we found her on a fresh impala kill, which she had managed to hoist into the branches of a large marula tree. The young leopard fed on the kill for a further three days and finally moved off on Saturday morning, moving down to the dam to quench her thirst before spending the remainder of the day resting.
Nyeleti was seen in the same area on Friday and appeared to have been involved in a fight, as she was sporting a few fresh injuries. The worst of which was a bad cut under her eye! We just hope that the injuries were not as a cause of a fight to protect her cubs and as we have not seen them since cannot tell if they are all well.
Mafufunyane the male leopard, was seen moving through the eastern half of the area, scent marking and calling, late one morning and was left to his own devices as he moved off through a thicket.
The Tsalala pride has remained on the property for the entire week, spending a considerable amount of time around the lodge. They were first found on a wildebeest kill on the nearby airstrip. They had killed the wildebeest cow during the early hours of the morning and had all but finished the kill by the time we found them. Later that evening they were found a little further south of the morning's sighting, feeding on the remains of warthog that had been killed in the afternoon.
The sound of lions roaring woke us early on Sunday morning, and it did not take us long to find the entire pride resting close to the lodge. All of them appeared to have eaten well and it was assumed that they had made a kill the previous day on a neighbouring property, before returning.
The Mapogo males have also been seen regularly this week with three sightings of these two impressive males. They were seen early one evening as they groomed and started to move towards a waterhole for a drink. That evening they moved a considerable distance and were found on the outskirts of Simbambili Lodge, clearly following the roars of the Tsalala pride.
The Styx pride made a brief appearance on the property but due to the presence of the two males did not stay for long before moving east and removing themselves from any run-ins with the Mapogo's.
A number of herds have been seen this week. The highlight of the elephant sightings this week was the sighting of a very young elephant calf. The calf appeared to be a day or two old and was being carefully ushered by his mother and siblings as they fed near a large waterhole.
The last of the bigger herds of buffalo left the property on Thursday, moving eastwards out of our traversing area. They had been followed by the three groups of lions for their entire stay in the area and appeared to have lost three members, to the big cats during their week-long stay.
Rhino sightings have been constant and we have once again seen a large number of our sightings in the northern parts of the property as the rhino moved to and from the large waterholes.
The Simbambili Guiding Team
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