A brief encounter with a leopard on the last day of our holiday in Namibia and Botswana in 2016 was the catalyst for our trip to Londolozi in July this year.

Little did we know when we booked that the wildlife viewing at Londolozi would come quite so thick and fast, and with so much variety.

Having landed at the airstrip, and met our ranger and tracker team – Grant and Jerry – we headed off to camp. We weren’t even half way there before we met our first leopard, wandering down the road in the middle of the day! The rest of the four days carried on in the same vein as those first few minutes.

Our most incredible moments included viewing a rarely seen male cheetah, multiple close-quarter sighting of leopards, the since-deceased Piva male leopard with kill in a tree, five white rhino in one place, hearing the roar of a male lion, watching three lions cross the Sand River in the black of night and the smallest lion cub you could imagine.

This absolutely fabulous game viewing combined with a great team, fantastic food and a stunning location equalled a superb holiday.

We’ll be back soon. Next time for some leopard cubs!

Majingilane

A Majingilane male lion turns to listen to roaring in the distance. This coalition has spent a lot of time split up in the last few months as they continue to patrol to both the west and east of Londolozi.

trees, winter light

A typical pre-dawn winter morning on Londolozi as light filters through the trees. A few months later, these very Marula trees are now starting to sprout fresh, new leaves.

cheetah

A male cheetah watches a herd of impala from the shade of a tree. These cats are diurnal, meaning that they typically hunt during the day when the other predators are less likely to be moving around.

elephant feeding, Londolozi, KNP

A young elephant bull feeds from a round-leafed teak. Bulls this age typically meander on the edges of the herd, eventually leaving to join bachelor herds at about 15 years old.

Mashaba, leopard, Londolozi, Kruger national Park

The Mashaba female leopard watches a herd of impala feeding nearby. It was for Londolozi’s notorious leopards that we returned on safari and we were not disappointed by the incredible sightings.

9
Mashaba 3:3 Female
2008 - present

The Mashaba female is currently Londolozi’s best known leopard. Her relaxed nature means she is comfortable around the camps and vehicles.

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Spotted this leopard?
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22 sightings by Members
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Mashaba 3:3 Female

Lineage
Sunsetbend
Identification
markings
Timeline
38 stories
Territory
maps
Parents
2 known
Litters
3 known
Offspring
known
Siblings
known
Videos
playlist
mashaba, leopard, Londolozi, Kruger

The Mashaba female leopard stalk the herd of impala she had spotted earlier. She began to use shade and this termite mound for cover, hoping to creep closer to her chosen targets.

Mashaba, leopard, Londolozi, Kruger

Having been spotted, she gives up the hunt. She turned and walked right past our vehicle, allowing me this photographic opportunity.

saddle billed stork, river, Londolozi, Kruger national Park

A male saddle-billed stork walks in the Sand River, looking for fish to feed on. It can be identified as the male due to its dark eye. The female has a yellow eye.

Piva male leopard, Londolozi, Kruger National Park

Sadly now-deceased, the Piva male leopard lounges in a tree. This was our first sighting of a male leopard and it was incredible to see how much bigger he was than the Mashaba female.

piva male leopard, Londolozi, Kruger National Park

The Piva male glances skyward. Vultures will circle, looking for carcasses to feed from, which is one of the reasons that leopards tend to choose heavily vegetated trees such as this to stash their kills in.

7
Piva 3:2 Male
2010 - 2017

Directly descended from the original mother leopard and therefore part of the royal lineage of Londolozi.

U
Spotted this leopard?
You've seen this leopard
19 sightings by Members
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Piva 3:2 Male

Lineage
Mother Leopard
Identification
markings
Timeline
30 stories
Territory
maps
Parents
2 known
Litters
1 known
Offspring
known
Siblings
known
Videos
playlist
rhino, grass, Londolozi, Kruger National Park

A white rhino feeds past our vehicle one morning. Having relatively poor eyesight and a nose that is typically on the ground during feeding, they rely heavily on their tubular-shaped ears to hear danger coming.

lioness and cub, Ntsevu, Londolozi, Kruger National PArk

An Ntsevu lioness moves her very young cub from one den site to another. Moments like these are dangerous for the cub, as they are vulnerable to other predators when exposed like this.

lions, lion cub, Ntsevu, Londolozi, Kruger National Park

Despite the mother being completely unperturbed by our presence, the cub was a bit more inquisitive about the vehicle. Learning from the mother’s reaction though, the cub will then grow up trusting of the presence of vehicles.

lion cub, Londolozi, Kruger National Park, Ntseuv

The Ntsevu lioness eventually settles down to rest for a while. Her cub’s coat was completely wet by this point, having had to move through the dew-laden grass to keep up with it’s mother.

white-fronted bee-eater, Londolozi, Kruger national Park

A white-fronted bee-eater perches on a dead tree stump. From here it will flit away to snatch up passing insects and return to this resting spot to feed.

red-billed oxpeckers, giraffe, Londolozi, Kruger National Park

Three red-billed oxpeckers work through the coat of a giraffe, pulling off ticks to feed on. Although yellow-billed oxpeckers can also be seen in this area, they are far less common than the red-billed.

A hyena reaches up and grabs the remains of a carcass from a Tamboti tree. Although they can’t climb, they can jump, grabbing food just out of their reach.

evening drinks stop, Londolozi, Kruger

Me and Jacqui enjoying an evening drink with our ranger, Grant and tracker, Jerry. The pair made an incredible team.

mashaba, leopard, Londolozi, Kruger

The Mashaba female yawns before getting up to move. Despite appearances, yawning and grooming often precede cats getting on the move.

mashaba leopard, Londolozi, Kruger

Gorgeous dappled light falls on the Mashaba female leopard. Even when they’re not hidden in vegetation they can be difficult to spot as their rosetted coats resembles the dappled light.

cheetah, Londolozi, Kruger National Park

A male cheetah glances up from his resting spot before flopping back down again. Being significantly smaller than lions, leopards and hyenas, cheetah use open areas, vantage points and high levels of awareness to keep themselves safe. If they spot another predator, they can then use their speed to make a hasty retreat.

Londolozi Guests, Adam & Jacqui

Involved Leopards

Mashaba 3:3 Female

Mashaba 3:3 Female

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Piva 3:2 Male

Piva 3:2 Male

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You've seen this leopard

11 Comments

on Why We Came To Londolozi and Why We’ll Be Back

Join the conversationJoin the conversation

Marinda Drake

Stunning images Adam and Jacqui. Wonderful sightings. Love the tiny lion cub.

Mary Beth Wheeler

Wonderful images and even better memories! The tiny wet cub is adorable!

Bridie Tane

Wonderful photographs and blog, it is a very special place! We are visiting again in December , can’t wait!

Darlene Knott

Beautiful Photos! It is a beautiful area, isn’t it? I enjoyed your story of your visit.

Nickolette Karabush

Thank you for another wonderful blog! Always so informative! Getting an idea of what might await us when we land, is so very exciting!

Jennifer Ridgewell

Such fabulous memories and lucky you to see such beautiful Leopard and the Cheetah!

Andrea Mc Donagh

What fantastic images and experiences the lion cub is just tooo cute ..
Do you mind me asking how the Piva leopard passed …thank you

James Tyrrell

Hi Andrea,
He was killed by the Avoca male lions. He tried to escape from them in a tree that was a little too small, and sadly they were able to climb up and get to him.
Regards

Ian Hall

Wonderful moments, I hope you realise that you have caught the Africa Returnus Bug , a very expensive but very rewarding experience and I have to say Londolozi is one of the top camps in Africa with a very special ethos.
There are lodges which look out to the world and appreciate they have a larger role than just driving up, pointing the guests cameras towards a cat and saying “that is a leopard”.
However those lodges are in a minority.

Callum Evans

An absolutely incredible set of photos and sightings, almost defying belief!!!

Eulalia Angédu

Awesome pictures Adam and Jacqui.I love especially the giraffe, the Majingilane male, the Ntsevu lioness with her cub …all of them.The text is quite interesting and together with the pics,the whole blog is simply stunning!Nice work.

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