The Case family were a lot of fun. Three years ago, John and his wife Shanna visited Londolozi to celebrate their ten year wedding anniversary. This year they came back with their two children, Drew and Will to give their kids the experience they had three years ago. Drew and Will had the time of their lives. After days filled with track moulding, playing soccer, fishing and game drives, the two boys would fall exhausted into their beds each evening waking up eager to do it all over again the next day.

Kids photograph tortoise. Photo by Jack Case

Will and Drew were determined to get the perfect photograph. Here, we get them to lie flat on their bellies to photograph a tortoise drinking.

John had brought a camera trap with him, with the intention of showing the boys what walked past their camp at night while they were asleep. Tayla Smith, Pioneer Camp Manager and I took it upon ourselves to try spice things up for the kids and dug in the back of several cupboards to find Londolozi’s best wildlife “onesies”. The plan was to walk past the camera trap in the onesies to give the kids a laugh. But every now and again the joke turns on you. Here’s what we found…


One of the first images we capture was this “lion” walking down toward Taylor’s Dam. Most likely to get something to drink on a hot summer’s day (probably from Pioneer Camp bar). Please note that the time stamp is Seattle time.


A few minutes later, a “leopard” miraculously appears along the trail.


Remarkably, for one of the first times in the history of Londolozi, a leopard and lion resolve their differences and take a walk down the trail together.


A small herd of impala and nyala head down to the water’s edge to drink in the late afternoon.


When evening approaches at Londolozi, hippos leave Taylor’s Dam in search of green grass and usually return in the early hours of the following morning.


This was where the joke turned on us, when an actual leopard (we are not sure which leopard it was) walked past the camera trap, most likely in search of Tayla.


Always in search of an opportunity, a spotted hyena sniffs down the same pathway that the leopard had walked along shortly before.


After eight hours of foraging, the hippos return to Taylor’s Dam in a rather orderly fashion.

Filed under Wildlife


on Camera Trap Shenanigans

Join the conversationJoin the conversation

Susan Farrington

LOL!! Love it! Great way to really make it fun for the kids…and I’m sure everyone got a good laugh. The other captures were great…it’s amazing what creatures pass by, in their own private world, usually undetected by us humans.

David Attenborough

That is so awesome Shaun and Tayla, the kids must have been blown away.
Any idea what the 2 reflections are in the middle of the night pictures, (most visible in the Hyena and returning hippo pics?)

Mary Beth Wheeler

Fun! I love the lion-leopard BFF’s!!


What fun! Great blog post!

Jill Larone

So funny! I’m sure the kids loved it, and incredible to see how much action goes on during the night while everyone is asleep and was captured on the camera trap. Great pictures!

Vicky Sanders

That was hilarious! Such a cute, funny idea to entertain the kids…and us. Nice ‘real’ cam trap shots as well.


Fantastic fun – they will probably be “hooked” for life!

Maureen Jones

A year ago this weekend we were eagerly anticipating our time in South Africa. Every family gathering turns into a Londolozi memory moment. Your name comes up regularly Shaun. Thanks again for the best four days ever.


So funny guys. The lengths you go to for your guests. What are those two reflections David asked about?

John case

This is the case family replying from the airport on the way home… This was a great prank that you pulled and it added to an incredible trip overall. We weren’t sure how eager everyone would be to accommodate the needs of youngsters (in this case, 7 and 10) but the entire camp could have not have been more enthusiastic, and we thank you tremendously…

Shaun D'Araujo

Hi David. The reflection is a wild flower with rather leathery leaves will get back to you on which plant it is.

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