Friday, 4 February 2011

2nd February – The North Returning to Form!

Photo of the Day
Argyle male leoaprd

Morning Drive
(Elliot and Marka)
1 x leopard (Argyle Male with impala kill) – Argyle, Xinatsi Dam Rd West

Afternoon Drive
(Elliot and Marka)
1 x leopard (Argyle Male with impala kill) – Argyle, Xinatsi Dam Rd West
2 x rhinos (male and young male) – Peru, Voel Dam Southern Access
3 x rhinos (Nhlangula male and 2 females) – Peru, Voel Dam Northern Access
1 x breeding herd of elephant – Motswari, Xinatsi Dam
1 x breeding herd of buffalo – Peru, Peru Entrance Rd
3 x buffalo bulls – Argyle, Lovers Leap

Daily Synopsis
Wednesday morning was a fair one, with nice general game and the odd elephant and buffalo, but the highlight of the morning was finding Argyle male leopard (who had escaped the guests yesterday) with a large impala ewe kill stashed safely in a Sjambok-pod tree.
It was however the afternoon drive that hopefully signalled a return to form in the north, with all the action and interesting developments occurring in the northern sections. 

Buffalo bulls fighting below Lover's Leap

Elliot was under a bit of pressure as he had two groups of guests that were only visiting for one night!  The animals clearly sensed this and helped him out quite a bit!  He started his drive with a nice breeding herd of elephant and a hippo at Xinatsi dam, then went to help follow up on one of three different groups of lion tracks found in the afternoon!  Tracks for the Mahlathini’s were around Peru Dam, then there were tracks for 2 females with cubs in the north-western corner around Voel Dam, and we are still confused as to which lions these are/were.  Also, there were tracks heading south from Voel Dam for a pride which Elliot thinks could be the Xakubasa White Lions returning...time will tell! 
Despite all the tracks, they led to nothing before it got to dark, but that was not the end of the afternoon, no!  Two small crashes of rhinos were located near Voel Dam one of two males and the other of a group of three relaxed rhinos!  It is great to see them moving back into the area! 
Heading back to camp Elliot had nice breeding herd of buffalo, and then a stop off at Argyle male, who had returned from lying near Argyle Dam to resume feeding with a hyena below!  The intestines fell out, and the hyena was quick to run in and grab them and devour the free meal in a couple of minutes – some reward for her patience!
So despite the lack of lions, there seems to be plenty of evidence that they have returned, and let’s hope that like in January, the first part of the month is a bumper one in the north!

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