Shenton Safaris Big Cat Round Up
What an amazing week of sightings we have had out here. We are including alternative names in brackets for our Lions, the alternative names come from the newly aired Documentary-Drama on ITV “Lion Country – Night and Day” which was filmed here at Shenton Safaris during the 2016 season. Numbu Boys (The Punks), Mwamba-Kaingos (Prince & Ziggy’s Pride) and Hollywood Pride (Rosa’s Pride)
Thursday – 17 August
We came across the mature leopardess Malaika this morning. She was in the area of Acacia River Drive trying her luck ambushing some impalas next to a dried out hippo gully. Unfortunately she was unsuccessful.
5 members from the Kaingo pack of wild dogs were seen this morning close to Kaingo Corner. They were running around chasing some impala and puku however were unsuccessful in actually catching one.
The mature male leopard Luambe was found up a tree with a puku – we assumed he killed the night before. He came down the tree for some water from the river, in a moment the young leopardess Chiphadzuwa appeared from the bushes and quickly made her way up to the carcass to feed while Luambe was away. That evening we returned to the same spot where Luambe was back with his kill, Chiphadzuwa was on the ground not too far away. A short distance away Malaika was waiting too. 3 leopards waiting on one carcass, what an amazing sighting happening around Hippo Hospital area.
The young unnamed male leopard was found again at Fish Eagle Lagoon this afternoon. He was resting atop a natal mahogany tree very relaxed. It seems he is still very comfortable in the area not too worried about the other dominant male leopards around
Andrew and his guests found a new unknown male leopard along River Drive this evening. He was extremely shy at first but later relaxed while the sun was setting, taking comfort knowing it would be dark soon and he could begin hunting.
Friday – 18 August
This morning Luambe and Chiphadzuwa were still in the area of Hippo Hospital. Luambe was with the puku carcass in the sausage tree and Chiphadzuwa waiting in the area. When Luambe left again for a drink, Chiphadzuwa rushed up the tree for a quick meal.
In the area of Hippo Lagoon we came across 14 members of the Kaingo Pride – 1 male, 7 females and 6 cubs. They were all resting by the lagoon. They were found in the same area on the afternoon drive with 2 more members having joined.
In the evening we came across Malaika near Acacia River Drive waiting patiently for for some Guinea-fowls in the tree, sadly she wasn’t successful.
We were lucky to come across Mayi near Hippo Hide with one of her cubs, we are hoping the other cub is still okay. She was successful in killing an impala and dragged it up a tree.
Saturday – 19 August
This morning our guests were able to experience an a amazing sighting consisting of 4 different leopards. We had Malaika, Luambe, Mayi and a young male all in the area of Mayi’s kill from the night before. Luambe had stolen the kill from Mayi and dragged it into a bush. Malaika and the unidentified male came across to scavenge but Luambe wouldn’t allow it. Chiphadzuwa was also found close by, on top end of Fish Eagle Lagoon, with her own Impala kill.
This morning we were also lucky to locate the Mwamba Kaingo Pride with very full belly’s near Hippo Hospital Despite looking so full they were still stalking a hippo but it appeared more for entertainment.
Sunday – 20 August
Just south of Kaingo Corner the 3 adolescent male lions who left the Mwamba-Kaingos (Prince & Ziggy’s Pride) were found. They are all in excellent condition and looking strong. They were just resting under a tree enjoying some shade.
Monday – 21 August
This morning near Guineafowl Plains a large male leopard was found hiding in some bushes. It was hard to ID but we assume it could be the Kaingo male who we have not seen in a while.
That night we found Luambe the large dominant male leopard. He had stolen a puku which was killed by the Kaingo male earlier that day. He dragged the carcass a far distance into some thicket areas on Leopard Loop. When the hyenas arrived he carried the carcass up a tree. It seems Luambe is just using his sheer size to steal kills from other leopards now days and is not doing too much hunting of his own.
Tuesday – 22 August
This morning in the area of Fish Eagle Lagoon, our guides came across the Mwamba-Kaingos (Prince & Ziggy’s Pride). 12 lions all together, 1 male (Numbu Boys/The Punks), 5 Females and 6 cubs. They were under a sausage tree waiting for their next potential meal.
An amazing sighting this afternoon. The young leopardess Chiphadzuwa was found close to Fish Eagle Lagoon. She was watching a large troop of baboon crossing the open area. She picked out one individual who was lagging behind and she made her move. She killed the slow baboon swiftly but the rest of the troop turned around and rushed at the young Leopardess. She stood her ground and managed to make it away with her kill.
Wednesday – 23 August
This morning during a transfer drive Andrew managed to see the ex-Kakuli pride males further south, close to the Luwi river. 3 adolescent males in absolute pristine condition. lets see if they eventually make their way up north.
Amazingly less than a kilometre away Andrew also saw the 3 young males who left the Mwamba-Kaingos (Prince & Ziggy’s Pride). They are also in fantastic condition and looking very well fed. In a year or two they should be ready for a pride of their own. It will be interesting to see if they will return to their home ground and try regain some power.
In the afternoon the Mwamba Kaingo Pride (Prince and Ziggys Pride) were found on Mwamba Extension, close to Lion Plains. They were relaxing under an ebony tree with one having a very comfortable spot on top a termite mound.