About the Author

Rich Laburn

Head of Digital

Rich is the driving force behind Londolozi’s online storytelling and the Londolozi blog. His passions of digital media, film and photography, combined with his field-guiding background, have seen him take the Londolozi blog to new heights since he began it in 2009. Rich ...

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15 Comments

on The Sunsetbend Legacy

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Greg
Member
Guest

Thanks Tom very well written, great sadness as another legend passes. She was my personal favourite, the biggest most beautiful female leopard that I and anyone lucky enough to encounter would agree. Initially not very comfortable in our presence but after some time she eventually let us into her life and many of her young. Her legacy remains, she was an incredibly successful mother raising many cubs and holding such a prime territory. I remember her fondly and drove the eastern portions of Londoz as often as possible hoping to get a glimpse of her, the fact that she spent a lot of time next door made every sighting of her that much more special. Monza drive always rated as my favourite road, not only because of the massive leadwood trees, sodic areas,the vlei and the Mxabene but because of a possible encounter with the Sunsetbend Female. She will be missed but her independent young have moved in to take her place and remind us of the perfect leopard she was.

James Hendry
Member
Guest

Thomas that is truly marvellous writing.

Laura Hammond
Member
Guest

Tom when are you going to write a book?/

James Kydd
Member
Guest

Thank you Thomas. Thank you Sunsetbend, so many breathtaking moments in your company.

Daniela Wingate
Member
Guest

What a beautiful obituary Tom … (at the risk of sounding completely esoteric or cheesy – or both) I’m sure she’ll feel the love that just emanates from those words.

Wow – Londolozi is an unbelievably magical place, filled with incredible souls all round.

Jaime
Member
Guest

Summed up so well. Having worked at MM I got see this beautiful cat over a five year period and she was my favourite female leopard and an excellent mother. Thanks for all the great sightings and memories Ngoboswan Female.

Karen Gilliam
Member
Guest

WOW, wonderfully written Tom. You can definitely feel the love and respect of this awesome legend in every word. Beautiful photos and filming from Gavin and Rich as well.
With heavy heart to the ones that were blessed to see her often, she was such a beauty.
It has been a great privilege to research her and her family tree over time.
RIP Sunsetbend/Ngoboswan Female – a Legend gone but never forgotten

Jennifer Fenster
Member
Guest

What a beautiful girl she was….she provided many beautiful memories and photos for us! It is very heartbreaking and sad that she is gone!

gloria
Member
Guest

I never followed or knew of this site until recently but i mourn when any big cat loses their live they r human to me.Thank you for posting video beautiful

Michael
Member
Guest

SunsetBend
In Requiem Semper Iter Nam

It is a warm, lazy
Languid day.
A continent, an ocean away,
Electronic death.

Yet pixels transform,
Tiny stars glimmer
Into your
Constellation.

From deeper recesses,
Recalls liquid heat,
Verdant bush, pungent dung.
I feel the warmth, again.

Sunsetbend with royal light
In the bushveld of the night,
No unraveling your feline tapestries.
For who among us can comprehend?

We shed a tear
But for ourselves,
Bereft of toothsome, fearless face
Silent whispered Ancient Grace.

In fields of green, in fields of gold
In timeless hollows, trees of old
Lie quiet now in sweet repose.
No rippling rosettes,
Just darkened rings,
On prowl forever:
Protector of All Things.

richard
Member

Thanks for all your thoughts, comments and kind words about Sunsetbend. Michael thanks in particular for the poem. Laura, the book is on the way – children’s bushveld fantasy starring Sunsetbend and significant others ;-0

The sad thing is I was driving the Thomas family who at the moment are probably ‘stalking’ Ernie on the fairways at Wentworth. They came in April and we found Sunsetbend at Shingalana Dam. We were watching elephants drink when Sunsetbend silently sidled up to the car. The first thing I said was, “This is brilliant, but oh so sad as this could be the last time I will ever get to see her.” Unfortunately it turned out to be quite prophetic…

Every generation at MM and Londolozi will have their own Sunsetbend, which makes you just realise how eternal the bushveld really is.

Tom

Irma
Member
Guest

It’s wonderful to see how many people cherish those gracious and powerful cats! They become so familiar and cause such a pain when they are gone…………….But I am certain her legacy will live on!

Belinda
Member
Guest

Just so sad! I love nature, but when the cat’s kill each other, it is very sad! But I know this is the circle of life!

Lynty
Member
Guest

A wonderful tribute to a beautiful leopardess. It has always amazed me that the creatures of the wild choose to trust us and let us into their lives, then I read and view a tribute such as this and I understand why!

Margarita Doychinova
Member
Guest

Thank You!!! God bless You for Your tribute and Your love to animals!!!

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