Shenton Safaris’ Big Cat Roundup
18 August – Thursday
This week’s exciting Big Cat Roundup starts with Sylvester seeing Luambe, the big male Leopard, lounging at Hippo Hospital under a Leadwood (Combretum imberbe) on the afternoon drive. After driving all the way across to Wild Dog Lagoon, Sylvester and his guests were fortunate to see the now 11 strong Mwamba Kaingos from the Mobile Hide with 2 adult male Lions in attendance. The 3 adult Lionesses and 8 cubs were lying in the shade, doing the `lion’ thing.
Andrew and his guests saw 6 lions, 3 females of the Mwamba / Kaingo Pride and the 3 Numbu Boys, they were resting under a tree out at Leopard Loop, towards Wild Dog Lagoon. In the afternoon they saw 2 unknown sub-adult male lions, resting on the beach out at Luwi River Crossing, roaring.
19 August – Friday
Sylvester and his Guests spotted an unknown female leopard out at the crossing at Mwamba Hide. She was jumping down from a tree and ran across the Mwamba stream towards the Mwamba Island. After examining the tree that she had come down, Syl found she had an impala carcass blocked on the fork of the tree.
20 August – Saturday
In the morning, Yoram and his guests found Malaika and Chiphadzuwa feeding on an Impala wedged into the boughs of a Natal Mahogany (Trichilia emetica). They were not too fond of each others’ company and fought over the carcass until it tore in 2 pieces – apparently satisfying both. Until the appearance of Luambe forced them both out of the tree, surrendering their spoils to the greater size of the male Leopard.
That afternoon they found 2 sub-adult male lions wandering along the banks of the Luwi River at Luwi Crossing. They flopped down onto the beach at the Crossing and commenced such a roaring, as to call all Lions within the vicinity to answer the challenge.
Andrew and his Guests saw an unidentified male leopard talking impala in the afternoon out at Chamber Crossing, he was unsuccessful in his hunt. Later in the evening near Luwi River Crossing, they spotted 1 unknown lioness resting by a waterhole. She had signs of having cubs with full teats.
21 August – Sunday
During an early morning drive, Yoram and his delightful new guest found 2 adult Lionesses from the Mwamba Kaingo pride being courted by 2 adult male Lions along Crocodile Loop. The Lionesses resisted all advances.
Later on they spotted Chiphadzuwa at approximately 09h00 ensconced in a Sausage Tree (Kigelia africana) feeding on an Impala. She was accompanied by 3 different species of vulture: White-headed, White-backed and Hooded, who patiently waited for their share. She feel asleep over the carcass, properly denying the scavengers a share of the spoils.
Andrew and his guests saw Chiphadzuwa out at Acacia Loop, the Impala that she had killed was stolen from her by 7 Hyaena. Later on in the morning out at Crocodile Loop they also saw the Mwamba Kaingo Pride (3 Lionesses) with the Numbu Boys and 2 of their sub-adults. They saw 7 of the Hollywood Pride members resting in the Bird Bean (senna obtusifolia) out on the Shelf. Then they got to see Shy Girl and her cub near Hippo Hide with an Impala carcass up a termite mound.
In the afternoon Andrew and his guests saw 2 of the Mwamba / Kaingo Lionesses out at Crocodile Loop, with 2 of the Numbu Boys. They were resting under a Winter Thorn (Faidherbia albida), and a few fresh scratches were visible on the males, indicating that there could have been a fight. Afterwards on the Bottom Main Shelf, they saw 7 of the Hollywood Pride and were very fortunate to witness them stalk, take down and kill a Buffalo.
They then spotted Shy Girl and her cub again, resting under a tree with their kill, still close to the Hippo Hide.
22 August – Monday
Andrew and his guests saw 2 of the Numbu Boys roaring out at Gideon Loop, they then found 2 of the Mwamba/Kaingo Lions and the young male Mohawk resting in the shade out at Lilac Corner. Later, coming from Lion Plains onto Fish Eagle Road, they found Malaika resting near her Impala carcass; she then dragged it into the thicket to finish the meal.
23 August – Tuesday
Sandy and his guests saw Chiphadzuwa in the Fish Eagle Lagoon area. She did not seem in the mood for company and soon moved off into thick brush.
24 August – Wednesday
In the morning, Sandy and his guests found 2 of the Numbu Boys and a Mwamba Kaingo Lioness relaxing in the Ebony Grove, close to Kaingo Camp’s Bush Brunch spot. They appear to be a mating pair with a spare wheel in tow and Sandy spent 45 minutes in voyeur mode hoping to see the action, but the lady played hard-to-get. Also this morning, near the southern Ebony Grove across the Luwi River, Andrew and his guests spotted a very relaxed unknown male Leopard on the hunt.
This afternoon, Sandy and his guests together with Sylvester and his guests saw 3 Lionesses of the Mwamba Kaingos hunting in the area of Wild Dog Lagoon. The Lionesses lost the element of surprise, breaking off the hunt and were soon joined by 7 cubs, who seemed over-joyed to see their mothers after such a `long’ time away and they all started to play out in the open.
Well that is all from us this week, some exciting happenings already in the week to follow. See us then.