Big 4 Sightings
Lions (Panthera leo)
As previously mentioned, lion and lioness had moved towards the south of the reserve where they have been together ever since except for occasions when the male would patrol further north, vocalising frequently as he seeks to establish his territory.
The relationship between these two big cats seems to be relatively harmonious, as we have seen them hunting together including taking down a blue wildebeest bull in thick cover after a successful stalk.
On the morning of the 29th, we had one of our most memorable lion encounters. Having tracked the male to the north-western side of the reserve, we stopped a short distance away only for him to walk directly towards the game drive vehicle and pass within two metres of us!
The same afternoon, we saw – and heard – him vocalising on the Ibubesi Plains in the centre of the Reserve – an unforgettable experience for our guests, with the incredible sound echoing in the valley as we watched hippos in Rhino Dam.
The lioness, meanwhile, was still in the southern parts of the Reserve but a few days later joined up with the male again in the Sterkstroom Valley.