Every so often a Ranger/Tracker team will hit a purple patch. The bush just seems to offer up amazing sighting after amazing sighting, and the rest of the team start thinking it might be best to simply follow in your wake, because they know it’s you who will be calling in the high-profile animals.
Ranger John Mohaud and tracker Euce Madonsela had such a run recently. The guests they were driving were here for a 14-night stay, and being interested in photography, were more than happy to put in the hours waiting for sightings to develop, or for John and Euce to spend the time on foot tracking big cats.
A particular run of four game drives in a row resulted in some fantastic viewing, and John was kind enough to share with us what they saw.
We’ll go through it drive by drive, starting today with John’s afternoon sighting of a pack of African wild dogs.
“The pack were lying near a prominent waterhole in the middle of Londolozi with their 7 pups. They got going just as we arrived, and chased off a young hyena who had wandered down to the pan, probably for a drink. After that the adults started running around interacting with some zebra and wildebeest. Although the young of both of these prey species have been known to be taken down by wild dogs, and even adult wildebeest in some areas, more often than not on Londolozi their prey tends to be smaller, like impalas or young kudus.
What was funny to observe was how unsure of themselves the pups were. They are still far too small to get involved in any chasing.
Have a look at this video form a few years ago of a pack of wild dogs interacting with a zebra herd:
“After the wildebeest moved off the adults then chased a small sounder of warthogs, although without success. Once more the pups didn’t know what to do and hung back. Seeing interactions between different species – particularly predators and prey – is what makes the bush truly fascinating, and to have seen the wild dogs interact with 4 different species in a very short space of time was wonderful.”
John’s amazing run was just getting started. We’ll showcase a few more of his sightings over the next week or so, so keep checking in for his second, third and fourth instalments…