18 November 2017 : Another day in the Life of a Game Ranger.

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Saturday was just one of those days in the bush where I could have been out there all day, and with all that was going on, I don’t think you can blame me! We started off by heading to Tshwukunyana male leopard not too far from the lodge to see if he was still with the impala kill he had stolen...

and we found him walking along the bank towards the water by Lover’s Leap and followed him to watch him drink for ages before he walked off and settled in the thick banks on the riverbed, so we carried on west to see if there was any sign of the lions that we couldn’t find last night.

We had checked most of the roads around where they had been, and had just turned onto one taking us back east when three lionesses were radioed in a little ahead of us, and we arrived to find the old gals of the Western Pride resting next to the road, and some way south of their normal range. They looked settled for the day, so I made space for Robynne to come and view them, only for the lions to wake up and walk north and then spend the rest of the morning lying up and watching some nearby rhinos!

I wasn’t complaining too much, as I went towards Makulu Dam to look for the wild dogs that had been seen in that area earlier in the morning, and after seeing a hyena, we bumped managed to find the wild dogs full of life having not only cool conditions, but also having had a fresh kill in the morning. We eventually parted ways and went for a drink under a large tree on the banks of the Nhlaralumi to get away from the drizzle that was now falling, and after finishing up, headed back to the lodge seeing a herd of elephants along the way, and ending off with three large elephant bulls near the camp! They spent the latter part of the day in front of camp, as did a buffalo bull.


My afternoon mission was to head towards the area and find the rhinos again, which we did with a warm start to the afternoon – we passed the usual suspects, as well as a Tshwukunyana male leopard descending the tree in which his kill was housed before disappearing into the thickets, so instead we spent time doing bird watching before dropping Difference off to follow up on the rhinos, which wasn’t too difficult as they hadn’t moved from where they had been in the morning.

Whilst we watched the rhinos (it was the injured cow, and she was limping badly, but looking in good shape still), Difference went and relocated the lions for those that were interested, which didn’t actually include us! Kevin had been with Inkanye female leopard most of the afternoon after he found yet another one, and we went to join him as she was following an impala herd, but she lost interest and lay down, so after some time with her we moved off and went for a drink at Leopard Rock Hide where we had a lovely sunset and the added bonus of having both hyenas and wild dogs come down into the riverbed in front of the drink spot! The one sighting we did miss out on this afternoon was that of Shongile female and Ntima male leopards mating in the north-west; perhaps we needed to leave something for tomorrow???

 

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