Leopard drama has defined the last few days, what with an unknown male, the Dudley Riverbank female reappearing after many months, and the sad discovery of the dead body of one of the Mashaba female’s latest cubs. We think that the unknown male may be responsible for the cub’s death, as an unrelaxed male leopard and strange tracks have been seen in the area around camp, and with the Marthly male being the father of the cubs, and unlikely to harm them, a rogue vagrant would be the most likely culprit.
If this is the case, he nearly got his comeuppances today, as the suspected intruder was treed by the Tsalala pride on the crest opposite camp, although eventually managed to escape to the Manyelethi riverbed when the lions lost interest in him.
We’ll see if he sticks around, but with the Gowrie and Marthly males firmly controlling the area, it is unlikely the younger and smaller intruder will remain in the vicinity for long.
Enjoy this Week in Pictures…
An elephant drinking from Lex’s Pan takes time to splash some mud over his back to cool down in the heat of the late morning.
The lighting in Winter is beautiful, and although I would rather this zebra had its head up (we were in a rush and I just had time to snap a quick shot), the warm glow gives a lovely feel to the scene.
A misty morning with a lone male wildebeest wandering through his territory.
The Mhangeni pride, not seen much on Londolozi of late, return to one of their old haunts, the Manyelethi Riverbed.
One of the Mhangeni cubs in a high-key interpretation.
Another high-key image, this time with a hippo’s head just poking up above the water’s of Maddies Dam.
The Tu-Tones male on a young impala male carcass. He has been seen a lot more frequently on Londolozi of late, perhaps sensing a weakening of his father’s (the Camp Pan male) territorial hold?
The male cheetah, not snarling but yawning, catches some warm sun rays from atop a termite mound on a chilly winter’s morning.
Lex’s pan again. This time with a hippo bull seeking refuge in its muddy waters.
The Tsalala tailed lioness watches over her cubs while the unidentified male leopard watches from a marula tree nearby.
The adult Tsalala lionesses look down over Sasekile Ingwe clearing towards the Londolozi Camps.
The rogue male leopard mentioned earlier looks towards the Tsalala pride to judge his escape. Initially thought to be the Tutlwa young male, we now believe him not to be so. He has a 3:4 spot pattern, so if anyone can help with identifying him we’d be very grateful.
A young elephant snatches a drink from 40k pan before hurrying on to join the rest of the herd.
I haven’t got a good picture of the Mashaba female in a while, so dug up this one from last year. She has been spending a lot of time around the Winnis’ Donga area lately, secluding what was a litter of three cubs, but with the loss of one to the rogue male, we believe down to two now. They have proved almost impossible to view as they are still very nervous around the vehicles.
The Southern Skies provide a breathtaking backdrop to this dead Leadwood tree near the Maxabene Riverbed.
Photographed by James Tyrrell
Love the lighting in the zebra photo.
Just a thought about the ID of the young rogue: Robson’s male leopard. He has been seen close but north of Londo border. Elephant Plains reports sightings of him. He has been trying to squeeze out a place of his own on the edges of the Gowrie male’s (Lamula) territory. I don’t have a photo, but I think he is a 3:4 or 4:4 spot pattern.
Beautiful photos James! I’m really sorry to hear of the loss of the little Mashaba cub…very sad. Life is so hard for these little cubs. Hopefully the remaining two will survive and go on to live long, healthy lives. I especially love your photo of the Mhangeni cub…just stunning!
Wow, your photos are so stunning and are def getting me very excited to be with you in a few weeks!
I like the Zebra & Wildebeest for the lighting & mist, but as usual all the others are beautiful too. Thank you James. Have a great weekend. 🙂
Thank you for sharing these wonderful photos.. Nothing like a week in pictures to take me back to the place which lives in my heart.. The Sabi Sands!
The starry sky pic reminds me of my first visit – bush braai under a night sky like I’ve never seen before. So dreamy…. Including shooting stars and the hyenas that we attracted! Can’t wait to come back.