World Wildlife Day celebrated in a week’s pictures

Tomorrow, the 3rd of March 2018, is the UN-sponsored World Wildlife Day with the theme, “Big Cats - Predators Under Threat”. In South Africa we try to celebrate and focus on these animals constantly, as well as any other species that need protection. In light of this, we have dedicate today's blog: “The Week In Photos” to celebrating the Big Cats that call Tanda Tula their home.

Despite our regular encounters with various big cats in the Greater Kruger Park area, we sometimes forget that these species face threats from many sides. It is imperative to raise awareness of the pressures being placed on big cats today throughout the world mainly through habitat fragmentation and loss. We support the UN’s goal to celebrate our planet’s beautiful and diverse wildlife whose intrinsic value provides so much to ecological, social, economic, scientific, cultural, recreational and aesthetic aspects of our human well-being and sustainable development.  

The following images of some of the big cats found in the Timbavati over the last seven days were taken by Chad Cocking. We hope that by showcasing these beautiful big cats on World Wildlife Day we can help create awareness. 

One of the Ross lionesses yawns as she stirs from her slumber following a wildebeest kill with her sister.

One of the four lionesses from the Mayumbula Pride that make a rare appearance on our southern boundary.

A stretch after a good rest.

The pride set off into the sunset for a hunt.

Late one morning we found Marula, a female leopard, resting on a termite mound.

She was less than 100m from the lodge.

She had stashed a fresh impala kill in a nearby tree.

The kill kept her in the area for three days.

The old lady of the north, Nthombi, another female leopard, shows why she is such a star by finding the perfect dead tree to climb upon to enjoy an afternoon rest.

Another new face for us this week - an unknown, large male lion was located in the south-west and despite sleeping all day, he awoke shortly after sunset to show off his impressive size.

After a very windy night Sunset, another female leopard, was the third leopard found with a kill the next day.

We watched her finishing off the last scraps before she dropped the last remaining pieces to the hyenas waiting below. She then went on to groom herself.

The Marula female leopard descending her favourite type of tree after having finished her impala kill.

A shy young male leopard rests up in a mopane thicket after a failed hunt on impala. Living up to the secretive reputation of his species, he remained well-hidden until darkness, and that evening successfully caught an impala and hoisted it up a marula tree, out of reach of the scavenging hyenas.



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