20 Comments

on The Week in Pictures # 20

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Shaun Roe
Member
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Great pics Talley !

Talley Smith
Contributor

Thanks Shaun! And thanks for taking such great care of the Bermuda crew 🙂

Sheena
Member
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Talley, I’m running out of appreciative expressions on this blog – if you guys don’t do well in the SA Blog awards with entries like this, then the world has gone mad!!!
Fabulous – all of it, you take us into the moment with your comments, and stun us with glorious photography. Glad you avoided the ellie mud bath, and that Freddy spotted the Tsalala returnees! You are right, being patient always pays off, we should all slow down, observe, listen and learn. Stay cool, stay safe ….

Talley Smith
Contributor

Thanks again Sheena. I have read your recent email to Byron… absolutely hilarious, keep up the good work! We don’t give him nearly a hard enough time as he deserves, so it’s great to know someone else is keeping him in line. 🙂

Jane West
Member
Guest

Lesson for this week: leopards and buffalo dung! I’m learning something new every week! I do have a request Talley- how about photos of whatever is blooming right now! It looks so gorgeous in the bush with the new grasses and trees leafing! We’d love to see your photos of foliage!

Talley Smith
Contributor

Thanks Janie, make sure you read David and Adam’s thoughts on the buffalo dung below. As for the flowers, the sicklebush blossoms have just come out, and I saw a beautiful S-N-A-K-E lily this morning, so the photos will come soon!

Judy Guffey
Member

I can’t put my thoughts any better than Sheena did …..thanks, mahalo…over and over.

Talley Smith
Contributor

Thanks Judy!

Willy Smith
Member
Guest

LOVE it all……but Talley – really, everyone knows Lead trees can’t see!! lol
🙂
UW

Talley Smith
Contributor

🙂

karine GAY
Member
Guest

I AM SO SAD NOT HAVING BEEN IN THESE GAME DRIVES…
GREAT PICTURES. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
FOLLOWING WEEK IN PICTURES IS REALLY A GREAT ADVENTURE…
SEE YOU SOON…

Talley Smith
Contributor

Thanks Karine, can’t wait to have you with us on another adventure soon.

David Dampier
Member
Guest

Tal, awesome pictures yet again, especially of the Nyaleti Young Female. On the buffalo dung-I am not convinced they do it to mask their scent. Usually they do it when they are behaving very territorially, scent marking often. Also they lick it a lot, even eating it which wouldn’t help with scent masking. The one theory I have heard is that they only do this with male buffalo dung, and are attracted to it by traces of testosterone in it-this also ties in to them doing it whilst behaving territorially. I guess it may well be a combination of both, but I don’t believe they have planned ahead to mask their scent-rather I think it is a secondary, unintended benefit of the attraction to the hormones or testosterone in the dung.

Not sure what everyone else thinks?!

Adam Bannister
Guest contributor

i agree Dave, my personal take is that when they lick it they are receiving some mineral salts out the dung. When they rub in it I think that they are in fact doing the opposite to masking their scent but rather ‘releasing it’ …using it as yet another territorial marker. Lets hear some other theories…

Talley Smith
Contributor

Completely agreed, Doyle and Ad. I hadn’t heard of the testosterone theory and it makes a lot of sense. I have always thought that the licking may be more to do with the vomeronasal organ in the roof of the mouth, as they don’t ‘eat’ a lot of the dung, so hormonal attraction fits perfectly.

As we were discussing the other day, it is important to point out that a lot of behaviours in leopard and lion are most likely more instinctual than actually thought out and planned. So the ‘masking’ theory – if true – should be further clarified as being an evolutionarily selected instinct rather than the leopard thinking, I am going to hunt today, therefore I should try to smell like a buffalo…

Again, it’s my opinion, and others are welcome! Thanks so much for the input guys!

Sheena
Member
Guest

I once heard from a vet that the grass eating in cats (big and small!) and dogs was due to an enzyme that is present in some grass, as an enzyme works like a catalyst it can stimulate vomiting or is devoured to correct an in-balance in the intestine – shows how smart these cats are! Nature heals.
Testosterone being a hormone I wonder how much is excreted in dung! (and Talley I will endeavor to keep Byron’s testosterone in literally balance!! )
Hunting wearing Eau de Buffalo – no Talley please dont!!

Rich
Member
Guest

I have witnessed this theory in action many times before, especially after cats have consumed a large amount of meat.

Joanne von Zeuner
Member
Guest

Can’t wait – will be visiting Londolozi 25 – 28 Nov for the first time. Love your blog and thanks for the narration. Really brings one into the situation. Ah counting the days……!!!!!!

Graeme Marais
Member
Guest

TALLEY!!! EXCEPTIONAL PHOTOGRAPHS… You should apply for a Nikon or Canon Sponsorship!
That series of photos of the leopard jumping was everyone who owns a camera’s dream and you nailed it

b phil
Member
Guest

I heard that the testosterone is absorbed thus jacking their levels

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