This week was truly a bumper week for leopard sightings, and in particular, leopard on kills. It seems perhaps that with the onset of the first summer thunderstorms, the extra cover provided by the dark, cloudy skies, strong wind and thunder, has enabled slightly easier hunting conditions. As such, there were numerous sightings of various different leopard feeding on kills including impala,duiker, nyala and bushbuck. As always, enjoy…
Camp Pan Male climbs a knob thorn tree to an impala kill. The kill had been made and partly eaten by the Vomba Young Female, but he couldn't care less and simply ran straight up the tree without waiting to see who was there.
Camp Pan Male enjoys the spoils of yet another stolen kill
Spot the leopard! The Maxabene Female, having just had a brand new adult impala ram kill stolen by a clan of seven hyaena, relaxes in some shade, almost disappearing amongst the vegetation
The Maxabene 3:2 Young Male feeds on an impala kill in a marula tree in the early evening. He is doing well after his eye injury which we reported previously. Although still not looking 100%, it has improved-and if he can kill and hoist an impala, then he can't be doing that badly!
The next two pictures were taken just minutes after the previous one, using the same camera settings-only this time lightning from an approaching thunder storm has lit up the sky.
This strike was even more spectacular than the first. Despite my best efforts, I wasn't able to capture a shot which included an actual bolt of lightning in the background.
The Vomba Young Female relaxes in an ebony tree over the Sand River after finishing a duiker kill that morning. After having her previous one stolen by her father, she did well to get in another good meal so soon after.
Taken slightly later than the previous shot, Vomba Young Female's form is silhouetted against the late afternoon sky.
Sighting of the week for me had to go to the Short Tail Male. He was found with an adult female Nyala kill, hoisted in a saffron tree. Here he cleans himself up before heading up the tree for another bite to eat.
Saffron trees are great for stashing kills, with their myriad of branches, but for exactly the same reason do not provide a great platform for feeding. As such, Short Tail decided to attempt to bring the kill down to the ground.
This however, did not go quite as planned for him. The back legs of the unfortunate nyala became firmly wedged in the tree. For the next few minutes he tried in vain to get it down, spending most of his time looking like a leopard pendulum, dangling from the carcass by either his teeth or claws.
He made more than one attempt-although looked very frustrated every time he failed. Unfortunately he just couldn't figure out the link between his predicament and the wedged back legs