Lagoon, Feb 2019

Hsantharam.buffaloscapebig5

There was excellent general game around the inland pans including big herds of buffalo as well as zebra, giraffe, impala, tsessebe, sable and roan antelope. A magnificent herd of approximately 200 eland were found. These are the largest antelope species in the region with bulls standing to five to six feet tall at the shoulder (1.5-1.8 metres) and when massed together are a wonderful sight. One day we were investigating a burrow which showed some activity when we were startled by a warthog and four piglets who came bursting out and left the guides covered in a cloud of dust.
Three sister lionesses with three cubs were located a few times. These lionesses were mostly seen in the southern part of the area where they were dominated by two big brothers. The cubs were of a very playful age, making for some good photo opportunities as they gambolled around. We saw the lionesses hunting zebra during night drive and were able to see them feeding on their kill the following day. One morning we found extremely fresh tracks of a lioness and cubs. We followed up and sensing that we were nearby positioned the vehicle up on a mound to get a vantage point. The slightest movement in the sage grass gave the cats’ position away and the guiding team were delighted to have found them. As we approached there was a huge roar and the pride moved in that direction until they were reunited with the big male. The cubs were keen to play with him, but he did not seem amused by their antics.
 

The resident pack of wild dogs were successfully tracked and we followed them as they started hunting a herd of wildebeest, but then one dog disappeared behind a thicket and rounding the corner we saw an impala ewe fighting for its life as two dogs started to tear into it. Within ten minutes there was nothing left but bones. A couple of hyenas came to try and steal the carcass but the dogs ganged up on them and drove them away. Eventually the dogs lay down at the waterhole and relaxed.

 
A male leopard was found a couple of times, but he is still quite shy and was darting from one bush to another.
 
The brown hyenas were still regularly seen. By now they were occupying two dens and moving regularly between them. One morning we saw the cub’s eared pricked sharply forward and followed its gaze to see two lionesses resting nearby. As we approached the cats we saw that they were on a fresh wildebeest kill. The lionesses dragged the carcass towards the nearby bushes, probably to avoid the carcass being detected by aerial scavengers such as vultures which might in turn attract other predators. The brown hyena cub seemed tempted to approach the lionesses as he kept on going back and forth, but we breathed a sigh of relief when it eventually dashed into the den for safety.
 
Elephants were seen often, including within the camp as they came to the river for water. Guests enjoyed watching them swimming and drinking from the camp and during the boat cruise. One herd was seen working together to surround and protect a day-old calf. Fruiting trees at the river attracted troops of entertaining baboons as well as birds such as green pigeons and Meyer’s parrots. Some guests commented on how much they enjoyed being lulled to sleep by the grunting of hippos in the river that flows part the bedrooms.
 
We were able to spot animals such as porcupine, African wild cat and serval during night drive as well as different owl species ranging from the tiny scops owl to the huge Verreaux eagle owl. The mopane woodland was a birders paradise with species including broad-billed roller, European roller, golden oriole and Bradfield’s hornbill. Many bee-eater species (carmine, little and European) dominating the tree stumps in the open grasslands. A highlight for some guests was watching a hamerkop devouring a frog.
(Note: Accompanying picture is from our Kwando Photo Library which consists of all your great photo submissions over the years, it may not be the most up to date, but we felt it was worthy of a feature alongside this month’s Sightings Report!)
Share this Story
  • Tau Pan

    Tau Pan, Nov 2019

    In what was arguably Kwando’s most unusual sighting for 2019, a bull elephant was struck by lightning right in front of ...
  • Nxai Pan

    Nxai Pan, Nov 2019

    November brought the first proper rains of the season to Nxai Pan. Afterwards, springbok could be seen jumping around as though ...
  • Lebala

    Lebala, Nov 2019

    We saw the large Wapoka pride most days during the month; they were feeding on warthog, buffalo, zebra and other antelope ...
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, Nov 2019

    During November, Lagoon guests were able to experience a remarkable combination of predator breeding behaviour as we were fortunate enough to ...
  • Kwara Splash

    Splash / Kwara, Nov 2019

    The resident male cheetah known as Special was seen hunting and killing a common reedbuck. A female cheetah with a three-month-old ...
  • Tau Pan

    Tau Pan, Oct 2019

    In a fantastic sighting we found that the ten lions of the Tau Pan pride had treed a leopard who was ...
Load More Related Articles
  • Tau Pan

    Tau Pan, Nov 2019

    In what was arguably Kwando’s most unusual sighting for 2019, a bull elephant was struck by lightning right in front of ...
  • Nxai Pan

    Nxai Pan, Nov 2019

    November brought the first proper rains of the season to Nxai Pan. Afterwards, springbok could be seen jumping around as though ...
  • Lebala

    Lebala, Nov 2019

    We saw the large Wapoka pride most days during the month; they were feeding on warthog, buffalo, zebra and other antelope ...
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, Nov 2019

    During November, Lagoon guests were able to experience a remarkable combination of predator breeding behaviour as we were fortunate enough to ...
  • Kwara Splash

    Splash / Kwara, Nov 2019

    The resident male cheetah known as Special was seen hunting and killing a common reedbuck. A female cheetah with a three-month-old ...
  • Tau Pan

    Tau Pan, Oct 2019

    In a fantastic sighting we found that the ten lions of the Tau Pan pride had treed a leopard who was ...
Load More By Kwando Safaris
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, Nov 2019

    During November, Lagoon guests were able to experience a remarkable combination of predator breeding behaviour as we were fortunate enough to ...
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, Oct 2019

    The pack of five wild dogs were seen hunting along the flood plains. In a scenario that is unusual at the ...
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, Sep 2019

    At the start of the month the resident pack of five wild dogs were doing very well and we usually found ...
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, Aug 2019

    We managed to track the two resident cheetah brothers until we found them resting and looking well fed. The following day ...
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, July 2019

    We were really pleased to see the resident pack of wild dogs back in the Lagoon area on 5th July as ...
  • Lagoon

    Lagoon, June 2019

    Night drives at Lagoon were productive during June yielding sightings of African civet, serval, genet and porcupine. We were even lucky ...
Load More In Lagoon

Check Also

Tau Pan, Nov 2019

In what was arguably Kwando’s most unusual sighting ...

Archives