Saturday the 2nd of April
The week was off to a high action start with one of the Birmingham male lions found on the hunt in the early morning at Sydney’s dam. Brent was on scene as the lion attempted to chase down a young waterbuck calf. The hunt however, ended in failure and the big male was forced to recuperate some of his energy in the shade of a nearby bush for the remainder of the morning.
(Birmingham male, Screenshot Credit: Kim Powers Blackley, safariLIVE, Djuma)
Sunday the 3rd of April
From manes to spots, Tingana and Thandi were spotted on the sunrise safari. The pair have been mating for several days already. This is the second time WE have spotted Thandi and Tingana mating in as many months. Should she fall pregnant she will follow in the paw prints of both her mother (Karula) and sister (Shadow) in siring a litter of cubs this year. The pair continued to mate throughout the day and were spotted again on the sunset safari. After a fair few more copulations they eventually went on their way into the darkness.
(Thandi [back] & Tingana [front], Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain, safariLIVE, Djuma)
Monday the 4th of April
More lions with the return of all 5 of the Nkuhuma Lionesses. The pride was found in the early hours of the day flat and sleepy. The lions are not exactly well fed, yet they are certainly far from the door of starvation! The spent the day lazing about in the cooling shade. As Jamie returned to the lions in the dying light the ladies yawned, stretched and wandered off into the darkness on the hunt.
(Nkuhuma lioness, Screenshot Credit: Agnes Zsiga, safariLIVE, Arathusa)
Tuesday the 5th of April
The Nkuhuma pride have been found again today, this time on Djuma Private Game Reserve. The ladies didn’t seem to be successful in their hunting attempts from the previous night. Despite the lack of success the lionesses were in good spirits. They yawned and stretched before grooming each other. Finally they were up and off towards the Djuma dam playing and pouncing on each other as they went. Eventually they went flat for the day in a small patch of shade just within the view of the Djuma dam cam. The lions remained flat for most of the day and well into the night, still lazing about in the final moments of the sunset safari.
(Nkuhuma lionesses, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain, safaiLIVE, Djuma)
Wednesday the 6th of April
Thandi and Tingana are back and still in the heat of mating. It appeared that Tingana, the dominant male leopard on Djuma, had a kill. It is unclear whether or not he made the kill himself or perhaps stole it from the Queen of Djuma, Karula. Either way the mating pair are well fed and still a little one track minded. After some amazing visuals of the amorous couple in a large tree together they descend to the ground. The leopards remained on Djuma for the entirety of the day and were found again on the sunset safari resting up in some thick green bush. The cats stayed flat and firm in their chosen resting spot well into the darkening hours of the sunset safari.
(Thandi, Screenshot Credit: Kaarina Pietiäinen, safariLIVE, Djuma)
Thursday the 7th of April
Tingana has been found in the pleasure of his own company this morning. Thandi is nowhere to be found and it is proposed that perhaps her estrous cycle has now finished and she has decided to return to her territory. However all is not as it seems, Tingana has injured both of his back legs. These injuries could have been picked up a number of ways, but it is unlikely that it would’ve come from his recent copulations with Thandi. The most likely causes are either from hunting or an aggressive encounter with another predator. Later on the sunset safari he has not moved far from where he was found earlier in the morning. James hangs around for a while and when the big cat tries to move it is clear that he does so with great care and ginger motion. Due to the nature of his injuries James leaves the leopard before it becomes too dark.
(Tingana, Screenshot Credit: Kaarina Pietiäinen, safariLIVE, Djuma)
Saturday the 9th of Arpil
There was excitement and promise in the crisp wintery air of the sunrise safari, Brent found some fresh female leopard tracks, after following them for a short time WE got to witness the sighting we have all been waiting for. Karula, the Queen of Djuma is found walking straight down the middle of Xibam road with two spotted balls of fluff in tow (watch video here). An incredible sighting was had as Karula stood in the early morning light watching her cubs, as one played in the grasses behind Karula the other slunk across the road to be next to the Queen’s side. The royal threesome then wandered their way into a thick block. Based on their behavoiur Brent feels that Karula has possibly made a kill in the area and is returning with her cubs. This bodes well as it could be an indication that Karula is now also moving her cubs back on to Djuma!
(Karula and cub, Screenshot Credit: Gabi Hossain, safariLIVE, Djuma)