Recently it has been very hard to explore too far into the reserve because a lot of the action has been happening right around the lodges each day. This last week has seen large herds of elephants walking through the riverbed in front of the lodge decks, feeding and drinking, on an almost daily basis. The Tsalala Pride fed on a wildebeest that they caught not too far from the airstrip. The Nkoveni Female leopard has been seen moving to and from her den site – a lucky few have even caught a glimpse of her cubs – and the Flat Rock male has been seen mating with a female leopard for the last few days.
This morning that same mating pair were found at the entrance to Pioneer Camp and a number of different Rangers and their guests managed to see them mating as they meandered upstream on the banks of the Sand River. We know which female he has been mating with but we thought it would be fun if we posed a little challenge to you to see who could identify which female it is. Visit our Specialized leopards website at and see if you can get work out which female it is.

Enjoy this Week in Pictures…


The Flat Rock Male lies up on the banks of the Sand River as the female he has been mating with for the last few days lies up behind him. Can you identify her in the next picture? 1/500 at f/4,5; ISO 100

The female tries to attract the attention of the Flat Rock Male early this morning. Go to and see if you can identify which female this is. Be sure to post your answer in the comments section below. 1/400 at f/5,0; ISO 100

Cheetahs will often look to climb onto elevated vantage points, such as this fallen over Marula Tree, in order to scan across the area they are moving through, whether it be to look for prey or any threats that may be in the area. 1/200 at f/5,0; ISO 400

A lone bull hippo in his own watering hole opens his mouth wide, showing off his interesting dental structure. The two big incisors you see at the bottom serve no purpose for feeding, instead he uses this for attack and defence against rival bulls. 1/1600 at f/5,6; ISO 400

The Nweti Male leopard is often seen to the west of Londolozi. This last week he killed an Impala Ram and hoisted it into a large Jackalberry tree. 1/1000 at f/5,0; ISO 400

The Flat Rock Male is being seen more and more often as he settles into the territory left vacant after the demise of the 4:4 Male. 1/50 at f/5,6; ISO 400

A Hyena cub pokes it’s head out of a new den site. There are four pups in the den at the moment and they are only about three months old at this stage. 1/60 at f/5,6; ISO 400

It’s always great to appreciate the small things like this exquisitely coloured Dice Moth. 1/30 at f/5,6; ISO 400

An inquisitive baby elephant gives us the stare without leaving the safe vicinity of it’s mother. 1/200 at f/5,0; ISO 400

We all have that one friend! 1/250 at f/10; ISO 400

A flock of Red-Billed Oxpeckers sit on the back of a buffalo. Notice how the juvenile Oxpeckers lack the red beak that the adults have. 1/160 at f/9,0; ISO 100

Sunset over Camp Dam just outside Varty Camp. 1/15 at f/5,0; ISO 800

Alex Jordan was much quicker with his camera than me when it came to capturing this shot. We had an incredible sighting of a Burchell’s Starling feeding a Great Spotted Cuckoo. The cuckoo is a brood parasite which means the adult bird will lay its eggs in the nest of a host species (in this case the Burchell’s Starling). When the eggs hatch, the starling treats the cuckoo as if it were one of its own and will rear it until it becomes independent. This cuckoo must have just left the nest and was still reliant on the starling for food. 1/640 at f/8,0; ISO 500 Photograph by Alex Jordan

About the Author

James Souchon

Field Guide

James started his guiding career at the world-renowned Phinda Game Reserve, spending four years learning about and showing guests the wonder of the incredibly rich biodiversity that the Mapuataland area of South Africa has to offer. Having always wanted to guide in the ...

More stories by James


on The Week in Pictures #277
    Alex says:

    Nhlanguleni female and i think Mhobeni male is actually N’weti male,son of Nyeleti and Hlab’nkunzi female.

    James Souchon says:

    Well done Alex! Thanks I have amended the name.

    Margaret Taylor says:

    Is it the Ndzanzeni 4:3 Female?

    James Souchon says:

    Hi Margaret, the Ndzanzeni female’s territory lies further south and east. It was the Nhlanguleni female.

    Lynn Burton says:

    My vote is for the Nanga 4:3 female.

    James Souchon says:

    Hi Lynn, it was the Nhlanguleni female. Thanks for commenting.

    CHRIS WOOD says:


    James Souchon says:

    Hi Chris, it was the Nhlanguleni female but it’s a tricky one because she also has some small black spots on her nose like the Mashaba female. Hope you loved your last trip, it was great to catch up!

    Odie says:

    Are the Tsalala males become nomadic? thank you

    James Souchon says:

    Hi Odie, yes they are still quite Nomadic. Still being quite young they haven’t been able to dominate a territory of their own just yet.

    Odie says:

    They are three strong males right? thank yoi

    Mary Beth Wheeler says:

    Is this the Nkoveni female?

    James Souchon says:

    Hi Mary Beth, The Nkoveni Female already has small cubs so it would be unlikely that she would mate at this stage. It was the Nhlanguleni female

    Richard Rochester says:

    Really great photography – keep them coming!!!

    James Souchon says:

    Thanks Richard

    John says:

    Hi James my I think it is Tutlwa

    James Souchon says:

    Hi john, unfortunately we believe the Tutlwa female is deceased. It was the Nhlanguleni female.

    Lynne says:


    Lynne says:

    OK – changed my mind, as Vomba is deceased. πŸ™‚ Last guess – Ndzanzeni. Wow – so hard without a full close-up to check spots and all!

    James Souchon says:

    Hi Lynne, The Ndzanzeni Female’s territory is a bit further south and east. It was the Nhlanguleni female.

    Chuck Illig says:

    Wow it is so GREAT ea. Nite when I do emails to see what is going on at Londolozi you guys do a Great job of keeping us updated even though we can’t be there THANKS Chuck

    James Souchon says:

    It’s our pleasure Chuck. Glad you enjoy it.

    Al Kaiser says:

    Some truly great pictures. I’m going to guess the Mashaba female based on the location although I couldn’t identify the distinctive mark on her nose. A great sighting nonetheless.

    James Souchon says:

    Hi Al, it was actually the Nhlanguleni Female but she was in the Mashaba female’s territory and she also has some small black spots on her nose just not as prominent as those of the Mashaba female’s. Great guess though it was a tricky one! Great seeing you last trip! Hope you are well.

    Lynne says:

    Well, shoot! I thought it was going to be one of the females on the link you gave. I kept trying to match her with those and none of them fit exactly, so I chose what I thought was the closest one. You guys are tricky!
    Thanks for this lovely guessing game. I really enjoyed it. I give even more credit to all of you for being able to distinguish between these magnificent animals and usually at quite a distance, no less!

    Barbara Bethke says:

    Assume its the Tamboti 4:3 female. I love your blog and want to thank you for the wonderful pictures and interesting reports and stories. I’ve been two times in the neighborhood of Londolozi and want very much to come to your place.

    Richard Walker-Randall says:

    I read the blog daily but today’s really was special bringing back awesome memories of my trip in December with Ted Swindon. Although I’m far away in New Zealand the daily blog takes me back instantly! Thank you!

    Richard Walker-Randall says:

    I read the blog daily but today’s really was special bringing back awesome memories of my trip in December with Ted Swindon. Although I’m far away in New Zealand the daily photos and news takes me back instantly! Thank you!

    Odie says:

    Much appreciate answering so many question,thank you for a great blog more powers to you and everyone in Londolonzi team

    Lynne says:

    I think I might have a broken link to “The Leopards of Londolozi” page. When I pull up the page it only lists 11 leopards and doesn’t include the Nhlanguleni female or the Flat Rock male. When you put up a link for the Nhlanguleni female in the comments I can now access her page, but I can’t get it at the first link that was posted. Is that just my computer doing this? Thanks! I love this blog so much!

    James Tyrrell says:

    Hi Lynne,
    We’ll look into it, thanks.

    Wendy Hawkins says:

    Stunning pictures James, especially of the sunset over Camp Dam – it is just awesome! Please can I use it as a Background on my pc? Have a great week & keep us enthralled πŸ™‚

    James Souchon says:

    With pleasure Wendy! Thanks for reading!

    sandra harmon says:

    the sunset photo at Camp Dam is ABSOLUTELY lovely!

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