In a single game drive on Friday our guests were treated to sightings of two of the rarest large predator species in the Greater Kruger National Park; the African Wild Dog and Cheetah.
The wild dogs were, as always, active and fun to watch as they started to settle down for a day in the riverbed. The cheetah, though, won the day by successfully bringing down two impala at the same time, right in front of Formen and his guests. Guests explained that there were three cheetahs lying in the shade of a tree next to an open plain when they started to take notice of a nearby herd of impala. Formen told everyone to sit quietly as they may be in for some action. All of a sudden the cheetahs were up and moving towards the herd; as the cheetahs gathered pace, the herd began to disperse, leaving each of the cheetahs chasing a different impala. Within seconds, two of the cheetah had successfully brought down their prey and the third one narrowly missed making it three out of three! The guests were all visibly impressed on their return to camp. We will load photographs as soon as we get them from our excited guests.
Also causing much excitement has been the recent sightings, on two separate occasions, of another white lion cub (now about two years old) that forms part of the Giraffe pride, a pride that numbers around 17 lions and is one of the larger prides in our area. Don recently spotted the cub, when he was on a trip out of the reserve, and was lucky enough to have his video camera handy (watch out for the footage on U-tube and our video page on the blog). Guests were also treated to a sighting of the white cub and the photos are rolling in.
Some important points to note here:
1. This single male cub is from a completely different pride to the two female white cubs that we see regularly further north in the reserve.
2. The two female cubs are part of the Shakubasa pride, while this young male is part of the Giraffe pride.
3. All the cubs are now around two years old and their chances of survival to adulthood are now quite high.
4. All the cubs were conceived and born to completely tawny parents.
5. All these cubs were conceived and born completely naturally, in the wild, with no human intervention.
6. The Timbavati Private Nature Reserve (with its surrounding Klaserie and Umbabat reserves) is the only place on planet earth where you will see naturally occurring White Lions that occur as part of the natural processes in the lion prides of this area.
We look forward to seeing you at Tanda Tula, and we hope for the opportunity to show you these beautiful and unique creatures.