Monday, 18 May 2009

12th May – Some Interesting ‘Bush Work’

My last morning before going on leave involved me staying in camp and doing working on my sightings reports in favour of going with some of the other guides to do some bush work. It was a choice I later regretted making!

The guys were busy working on our airstrip when they heard the Mahlathini male lions roaring nearby. Just on the other side of the Sohebele riverbed, the guys spotted the three lions at a distance, and not wanting to cause them to move off before the game drive vehicles arrived, stopped and waited. It was not long before the quiet sighting soon changed. One of the hyena cubs that frequent the camp suddenly burst out of a termite mound near the lions, and ran straight towards them! In a flash one of the male lions had sent the hyena cub flying with a mighty swish of his paw, and soon had the unfortunate youngster in his jaws! The yelping of the cub alerted its mother that came charging in, but it stopped dead when it saw the three lions and started giving a ‘rallying’ call to all the other hyenas in the area. The guys said that within three minutes there were almost a dozen hyenas coming from every direction, but it was too late for the cub – it was already dead. The one lion maintained his grip on the hyena while the two brothers ran around chasing the hyenas all over the show! It sounded like a harsh, but amazing sighting…yet I was sat in my room working on the computer!

Godfrey also managed a pretty nice sighting – he found a leap of leopards! Four leopards – Argyle Jnr and her three cubs! Unfortunately though, something spooked them and they ran off, although one youngster hung around for a bit. It appears that they had killed and just finished off a duiker – not a very substantial meal for a large group of leopards like that.

I do not know if they were relocated in the afternoon, but I doubt that they would have moved very far – and there is a good chance that they would be found again.

And that is it from me and the blog for a while, I will be back in the bush at the beginning of June, so until then, keep well!

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