Involved Leopards

Inyathini 3:3 Male

Inyathini 3:3 Male

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Mashaba 3:3 Female

Mashaba 3:3 Female

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Inyathini 3:3 Male

Inyathini 3:3 Male

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About the Author

Pete Thorpe

Field Guide

Right from his very first bush trip at the age of four, Pete was always enthralled by this environment. Having grown up in the Middle East, Pete’s home-away-from-home has always been a bungalow in the Greater Kruger National Park, where his family had ...

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18 Comments

on The Meeting of Four Leopards

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Marinda Drake
Master Tracker

Amazing sighting. To see not one but four leopards together is special.

Darlene Knott
Digital Tracker

Interesting dynamics going on here! This is an intriguing story to follow up on!

Mary Beth Wheeler
Guest contributor

Absolutely exciting! Only at Londolozi! I could just about hear the growling and snarling, Pete!
Btw, is the Three Rivers female the daughter of Tamboti? Xidulu?

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Hi Mary Beth,

Three Rivers is the daughter of the late Xidulu female.

Ian Hall
Digital Tracker

Wonderful sighting, on my second day at Londolozi I saw three together . Top busy trying to get a decent photo to get the full story

Carol Sturgeon
Explorer

Wow! Wow and another Wow!! That’s absolutely amazing! Such a great read!!! So many things that shouldn’t happen and yet right there it’s unfolding!!!

Bob & Lucie Fjeldstad
Guest contributor

As unusual as it is to spot two unrelated leopards together, finding four in one’s viewfinder must have felt extraordinary! We are envious but once again convinced that Londolozi is definitely “Leopard Central”!!!

Al Kaiser
Senior Digital Ranger

What a wild sighting! Is the three rivers female the same as the xidulu young female?

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Hi Al!

Yes that’s her. She has a very obvious 2:2 pattern with the rear spot on each side, much larger than the front one. Hope all is well.

Denise Vouri
Guest contributor

First of all it’s heart breaking that the Mashaba female lost her cubs, especially since each one is precious to the leopard re-population.

Secondly, 4 leopards in one place, two of them mating?! That’s insane. What an experience.

The photos are a good descriptor of the events, even the cell phone image. Always good to have a mobile phone backup.

Loved your blog!!😊📷📷

Joanne Wadsworth Kelley
Master Tracker

I can’t imagine everyone’s amazement when first realizing there were four leopards closely together AND remaining together for some time!! The stories behind each leopard is fascinating and now they are creating another story that will be retold to other guests in the future. Goes to show how strong the instinctive need to mate is which caused the four to allow each other’s presence. If the ladies are interested, the males will gladly stay and comply. So sad to have it confirmed Mashaba lost her Cubs, but gratefully others may be on their way to rebuild Londolozi’s population. This was a wonderful and surprising occurance!

Suzanne Gibson
Guest contributor

Is 4 adult leopards together a record? I remember seeing a blog some time ago with a picture of 3 (Camp Pan, his son Tu-Tones and a female, can’t remember which one), but this must be extremely rare. How lucky for you and your guests! Do you think the Ndzanzeni young male was watching for some courtship tips from his father?! – he was after Mashaba when I came last October , following her scent and vocalising. He’s got the looks, but has he got the touch?

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Hi Suzanne,

Haha, he (The Ndzanzeni young male) definitely has the looks, although I’m not sure that’s what the females are after… Rather size, strength and a willingness to defend a territory.

I have seen four leopards together in the same place once before, however it was the Nhlanguleni female with her two cubs at a kill, together with the Anderson male. In that case it was two cubs and two adults – quite different to the four adults we witnessed in this particular sighting!

Jeff Rodgers
Senior Digital Ranger

Great blog and images – as always. In preparation for my upcoming safari to Londolozi later this year, it would be helpful if you and your colleagues would include what actual lens you used, rather than just the mm setting. For example, in the first Leopard image, it is 235mm, but what lens did you use? Thanks for considering this; with so many great choices for zoom lenses, this information will help me, and I suspect other, in determining what to pack in my camera bag.

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Hi Jeff,

Thanks for this suggestion – definitely a good one. The camera settings displayed are an automated function that we have started using in the blogs. I will follow up and see whether it is possible for the lens information to automatically be included too.

For your information though, I use a canon 100-400mm (f5.0-f5.6).

Vicki Bradford
Explorer

Always amazing reading these stories and interesting to read of events that other animal trackers/guides tell you just don’t happen. Only at Londolozi!!! Thank you

Callum Evans
Guest contributor

Yet another Londolozi leopard surprise!! It makes sense there’d be more aggression between the two unrelated females than between father and son.

Callum Evans
Guest contributor

The Mashaba Female has been having really bad luck with raising cubs recently. That’s such sad news that she lost her Christmas litter.

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