Lagoon

Lagoon Camp, February 2022

Jackal berry and towering Fig trees have been bursting with berries. There are two motivations for how the Jackal berry earned its name. Number one is that the seeds from the tasty fruit have been seen in jackal droppings, but we prefer the second. They say that the berries are often not very visible. They are wily and elusive, like the fabled animal that often features in African folklore. Fruits from both trees provide nutrition for an array of species. This month, they attracted the parrot-coloured Green pigeons and noisy Grey go-away birds and squirrels. We have yet to see the jackal eat them, though.

Speaking of trees, our sharp-eyed team spotted a Green spotted bush snake near the central area going up a tree, and we saw a Boomslang between the kitchen and the dining area.

Lagoon Sightings Report-2

Most of the termite mounds have bred big fungus umbrellas and these mushrooms sure gained the attention of baboons and monkeys. These impressive mushrooms can also be eaten by humans and can form a remarkable diameter up to 50 centimetres long. Other insects logged this month include the shapely Rhino beetle, several dung beetles, the harvester termites and the gorgeous African monarch butterfly.

General game along the flood plains included lots of waterbucks, dazzles of zebras, Red lechwes, and we often encountered elephants along the river drinking water as well as mating pairs of Wattled cranes. We also appreciated the sighting of a big herd of Eland.

Two lionesses with six cubs were spotted at Giraffe Pan feeding on an Eland carcass. We later found a different group of four lions had landed another Eland and were enjoying the spoils of a rather enormous feast. A pride of 14 lions was seen frequently, once at hunting at Grass Pan and then on the Main Road hunting close to the river.

Lagoon Sightings Report

Two cheetah brothers were located at Water Cut Road with full bellies and the resident pack of ten wild dogs (four adults and six subadults) lay near Lebengula Road with full bellies of their own. We later found this pack minus a member, and we sadly discovered the animal dead, with what looked like a savage bite mark on the head.

Leopard activity included a male feeding on warthog on the ground while a female leopard lay upon a tree nearby. We also located a female leopard with a cub along James Road and later on Rakgolo road. This female also enjoyed an impala kill, which it stashed safely into a tree for stress-free feeding.  

Lots of springhares and the small bushbabies jumped across our spotlight on night drives, and we had an opportunity to watch the Black-backed jackals from close quarters. The night sky was outstanding, too, and we could see the most prominent constellations such as Taurus, Canis Minor, Canis Major, and Orion. Autumn is undoubtedly on its way because Scorpio was just visible on the eastern side very early in the morning.

(Note: Accompanying pictures are 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!)

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