Elephant Tracking Report: Late June to Late July 2011

The below report has kindly been provided by Save the Elephants South Africa. Based at Tanda Tula Safari Camp, the team of Save the Elephants South Africa track elephants, including some of Africa’s biggest tuskers, across boundaries from Private Nature Reserves to National Parks and across international boundaries to Zimbabwe and Mocambique. They identify individual elephants, study population dynamics and habitat use, and examine the effects of elephants on key tree species.

Visit the Save the Elephants website (http://www.savetheelephants.org/) or become fans of their Facebook fan page (http://www.facebook.com/STE.SouthAfrica).

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Elephant Tracking Report No. 4: Late June to Late July 2011

We bring you an update of the movement of 19 collared elephants in the Associated Private Nature Reserves (APNR) and Kruger National Park (KNP), South Africa. On the 6th July we fitted a new satellite collar to a bull named after the grandfather of a supporter of the project. Peace General (or General for short) symbolises the great spirit of Zhang Zhizhong who was one of the first Generals to fight against the Japanese invasion of China in 1937. We are hoping to replace one additional collar in the months to come so look out for an update in the next Elephant Tracking Report.

Wessa, Tussle and Mac spent all of the last month in Kruger National Park with Mellow and Gower also spending some time there in the more southern regions of the park. Yvonne and Irving as well as Joan and Lapajuma continued to enjoy Balule Private Nature Reserve although Yvonne and Lapajuma spent time in Klaserie Private Nature Reserve as well. The Umbabat Private Nature Reserve was home to several of the elephants, such as Matambu, Proud and Classic with General spending the entire month in the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve, where Summer spent all of her time as well. Intwandamela has been out of the Timbavati and venturing further afield.

To help you understand the elephants and their movements the first position of the month is indicated with a diamond and the last position of the month is indicated with an elephant. Cows all point to the left and bulls to the right.

We hope you enjoy this latest report.
Save The Elephants – South Africa

Report prepared by Sarah Bergs
July 2011

Figure 1: Positions of elephants in northern Kruger NP 28th June 2011

Figure 2: Positions of elephants in the APNR 28th June 2011

Figure 3: General (yellow) and Summer (pink)

General spent all of July wondering around the Timbavati PNR, where he had also spent all of June. Summer’s movements were also limited to the Timbavati for July, with Summer spending much time near the boundary of Klaserie.

Figure 4: Gower (blue) and Mellow (yellow)

Mellow yet again remained quite stationary this month, with very little movement in the Kruger National Park. The late rains mean that many areas are greener than they would be in previous years, perhaps spurring on this extended stay in one area. Gower, however moved around quite a bit – traversing the areas around the Timbavati River for most of his time.

Figure 5: Intwandamela

Intwandamela has been quite the traveller this month, as the beginning of the month saw him crossing the Timbavati River, where he spent some time, before moving down through the Manyeleti Private Nature Reserve, and moving into the Sabie Sands Private Nature Reserve, and even slightly in Kruger before heading back to Manyeleti at the end of the month.

Figure 6: Classic (red), Proud (orange) and Matambu (green)

Classic roamed quite widely in July, as his movements took him from the Umbabat PNR, into the Timbavati briefly for a couple days, and then back through Klaserie PNR, ending the month back in Umbabat. This overlapped with Proud, who spent much of his time in the Umbabat PNR. Matambu spent his time in the Umbabat PNR as well, near the border of the Kruger NP, ending his month with a venture into the Kruger NP.

Figure 7: Tussle and Mac

Mac again stayed on his usual turf within quite a small range of the Tsende River in the Kruger, similar to where he spent most of June. Tussle also spent quite a lot of time in a consolidated area in the Kruger NP, travelling to another part of the Tsende River.

Figure 8: Wessa (yellow)

Wessa limited his movements again in July and spent all of his time in the Kruger NP, near the Letaba River.

Figure 9: Irving (blue), Yvonne (red), Lapajuma (pink) and Joan (purple)

Irving spent July traversing Balule PNR, and much of his time was spent overlapping with the traversing of Yvonne, a collared cow in the Grasses herd. Yvonne travelled through much of Balule and ended the month near the border of the Phalaborwa Mining Company (PMC). Lapajuma on the other hand started in the Klaserie NR, onto the Olifants River, and then ended in Balule NR, also near PMC. Joan continued to move in the area between PMC and the Olifants River in a similar method to her May and June movements.

Until the next report, take care out there!

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