Please note that the Leopard's View diary is not a complete record of all animals and birds seen at the Lodge. It merely highlights some of the more significant sightings and some of the activities that have taken place in and around the Lodge during the last twelve months.



 

 

 

JANUARY 2016

 

1st        On drive see a greater painted snipe at the waterhole.  Birdpool: impala, vervet monkeys.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker,  vervet monkey.

 

2nd       Around 7.00 pmin the evening we watch a giraffe standing completely still in the floodlit area near the birdpool, looking intently down the slope.  It eventually moves off downhill and out of the light, then runs off at top speed. Immediately afterwards, a leopard (youngish female) crosses theopen area just below the birdpool – giraffe behaviour explained!.   Birdpool: giraffe.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, giraffe; hammerkop.

 

3rd        Giraffe drink at house birdpool. Birdpool: kudu, vervet monkeys.  Waterhole:  impala, giraffe, zebra, jackal.

 

4th        Repaired baboon/monkey damage to thatch and wire netting at the eastern end of the kitchen roof.  Waterhole:  zebra, waterbuck, banded mongoose troop.

 

5th        Repaired squirrel holes and broken wire netting in the rest of the kitchen roof.  Birdpool: duiker.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, waterbuck, giraffe, zebra.

 

6th        Repaired wire netting on office roof section.  Leopard tortoise drinking at birdpool falls in and has to be rescued.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, zebra, waterbuck, black-backed jackal.

 

7th        Impala herd with many fawns at house birdpool.  6.20 in evening:  male lion at waterhole then in open on other side – roars; captured on video (see Facebook page to watch the video – it needs good speakers for the playback!)  Birdpool: duiker, honey badger.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker.

 

8th        Waterhole:  impala, duiker, elephant, warthog; hammerkop group.

 

9th        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole:  impala,duiker, black-backed jackal, banded mongoose, waterbuck, vervet monkey, zebra.

 

10th      Buffalo around the house during the night.  1 mm of rain midday. Birdpool: impala, vervet monkeys.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, vervet monkey, duiker.

 

11th      Impala herd at house birdpool.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, jackal, tree squirrel.

 

12th      Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, waterbuck, porcupine; common greenshank.

 

13th      Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole:  impala,jackal, banded mongoose, duiker, vervet monkey, elephants; hammerkop.

 

14th      4 mm of rain mid-afternoon.Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole:  impala, warthog, zebra, waterbuck, duiker.

 

15th      Waterhole:  zebra, giraffe, waterbuck.

 

16th      Wildebeest at house birdpool (possibly the same one that will be killed by lions on 29 April 2016 some 90 m from our house)  Birdpool: impala, waterbuck, zebra.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, waterbuck, zebra, kudu.

 

17th      Huge impala herd at the house birdpool at dawn.  Three elephants at house birdpool mid morning, then at main birdpool.  Late in the evening there are 10 giraffes, a wildebeest and three zebra at the house birdpool.  Birdpool: giraffe.  Waterhole:  impala, giraffe, zebra.

 

18th      Four giraffes by house early morning.   Birdpool: giraffe.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, giraffe, zebra.

 

19th      Hammerkop and impalas at house birdpool.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, duiker, kudu.

 

20th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole:  impala, giraffe, zebra, waterbuck, black-backed jackal; hammerkop.

 

21st      Giraffe at house birdpool.  Birdpool: vervet monkey.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, zebra, vervet monkey, warthog, steenbok.

 

22nd     Birdpool: giraffe. Waterhole:  impala, giraffe, zebra, duiker, warthog, elephant.

 

23rd      Start work to replace half  of the lawn area at our house with beds for succulents.  Breeding herd of 8 elephants at waterhole late afternoon. Birdpool: impala, vervet monkey.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, waterbuck, warthog, vervet monkey, duiker, giraffe; small breeding herd of elephants around 5.30 pm.

 

24th      Large impala herd at house birdpool 8.30 a.m.  Birdpool: elephant breeding herd of 5 during the evening.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, elephant breeding herd.

 

25th      14 mm of rain during the evening.  Kudu at house birdpool 1,15 p.m.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, banded mongoose, giraffe, vervet monkey, zebra.

 

26th      6 mm more rain during the early morning.  Giraffe at house birdpool mid-morning.  Giant land-snail in house garden.   Birdpool: elephants in night. Waterhole:  impala, giraffe, zebra.

 

27th      Waterhole:  kudu. 

 

28th      At dusk 5 bushbabies  appear from the deck roof – they obviously spent at least this day under the apex of the thatch, perhaps because it was too hot under the tower roof.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker.

 

29th      Birdpool: impala, waterbuck, baboons.  Waterhole:  impala.

 

30th      Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole:  impala,zebra.

 

31st        Kudu and giraffe by the house birdpool.  Birdpool: warthogs with 6 piglets.  Waterhole:  impala, banded mongoose, zebra, vervet monkey.

 

FEBRUARY 2016

 

1st        Valve at the borehole pump replaced (the valve cntrols whether water ispumped to the lodge tanks or to the waterhole.  Warthogs at house birdpool.  Waterhole:  impala, warthog, duiker.  Birdpool:  impala, warthog.

 

2nd       Waterhole:  impala, jackal, warthog.  Birdpool:  impala,, warthog.

 

3rd        Waterhole:  impala, duiker.  Birdpool:  kudu; Wahlberg’s eagle.  17 mm of rain during the night. 

 

4th        Waterhole:  impala, vervet monkey, zebra, baboon; Wahlberg’s eagle.  Birdpool:  baboon.  1 mm of rain in the evening.

 

5th        6 bushbabies emerge from the deck roof at dusk.  There is a springtail eruption by walls of office, presumably in responseto the rain of the previous day. 

 

6th        Tonight the bushbabies come out from the tower roof at dusk.  Waterhole:  duiker, kudu, vervet monkey, warthog.

 

7th        Waterhole:  impala, zebra.

 

8th        Elephant and lion on drive.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, vervet monkey.  Birdpool:  vervet monkey.

 

9th        Waterhole:  impala, kudu, duiker, giraffe, warthog, zebra.  Birdpool:  kudu.

 

10th      Waterhole:  impala, waterbuck, porcupine.

 

11th      Drizzle earymorning.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra.

 

12th      Bushbabies emerge at dusk from roof of bar-dining area.  Waterhole:  impala, kudu, zebra.  Birdpool:  impala, wildebeest.

 

13th      two giraffe at the house birdpool early morning.  Waterhole:  zebra, waterbuck; four lionesses at 9.00pm.  Birdpool:  giraffe.

 

14th      Waterhole:  impala, kudu, zebra.

 

15th      Giraffe by house – 5.30 am.  Waterhole:  impala, kudu, warthog; Wahlberg’s eagle.  Birdpool:  warthog, zebra.

 

16th      On drive we encounter a cheetah 100 m south of the waterhole.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, warthog.

 

17th      Waterhole:  impala, zebra.  Birdpool:  kudu.

 

18th      Waterhole:  impala.  Birdpool:  kudu, duiker.

 

19th      Waterhole:  impala, giraffe, steenbok.  Birdpool:  hyena in the early hours of the morning.

 

20th      Martial eagle with legewan in tree on drive.  Waterhole:  impala.

 

21st      4.5 mm of rain late evening.  Waterhole:  impala, duiker, zebra, giraffe.  Birdpool:  kudu.

 

22nd     Birdpool:  impala, zebra, elephant.

 

23rd      Just after midnight, elephant bull Ezulwini is at the house birdpool, seemingly intenton browsing on the trees by the house and around the lodge wall.  Over the next two hours we had to repeatedly move him on using the vehicles.  Warthog female with suckling piglets near birdpool.   Three elephants at the house birdpool and one at the lodge birdpool in the middle of day; also waterbuck, impala.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, kudu bulls, duiker.

 

24th      Dwarf mongooses on morning drive near borehole pump.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, giraffe, warthog.  Birdpool:  giraffe, warthog, porcupines.

 

25th      Waterhole:  impala,, duiker, warthog.  Birdpool:  warthog.  Big thunderstorm early evening but only 8 mm of rain.

 

26th      Waterhole:  impala.  Drizzle during the evening.

 

27th      Birdpool:  giraffe.

 

28th      Waterhole:  duiker, black-backed jackal.

 

29th      Elephants at house and house birdpool, including Ezulwini and one with floppy right ear and very torn left ear.  Waterhole:  impala, vervet monkey, elephant.  Birdpool:  kudu.

 

MARCH 2016

 

1st        Waterhole:  impala, giraffe, zebra, warthog.  Birdpool camera trap photos from 1st  to 24th March accidently deleted so no record other than visual.

 

2nd       Waterhole:  impala, duiker, zebra, warthog.

 

3rd        Waterhole:  impala, zebra, giraffe, warthog, steenbok; hammerkop.

 

4th        Waterhole:  impala, duiker, giraffe, warthog, steenbok, vervet monkey, slender mongoose.

 

5th        Waterhole:  impala, duiker, warthog, giraffe.

 

6th        Waterhole:  impala, zebra, warthog, giraffe, kudu.

 

7th        Waterhole:  impala, warthog, kudu, duiker, zebra.

 

8th        Waterhole:  impala, duiker, warthog, slender mongoose.

 

9th        26 mm of rain – a real bonus.  Waterhole:  honey badger.

 

10th      Waterhole:  impala, warthog, kudu, duiker.

 

11th      Waterhole:  Egyptian geese.

 

12th      Waterhole:  impala, elephant, jackal, giraffe.

 

13th      Waterhole:  impala, elephant, waterbuck, banded mongoose, duiker; hooded vulture, hammerkop, Wahlberg’s eagle.

 

14th      1 mm of rain.  Waterhole:  kudu; Egyptian geese.

 

15th      Waterhole:  jackal, elephants, kudu; Wahlberg’s eagle, hammerkop.

 

16th      1 mm of rain.   Waterhole:  elephants, kudu, warthog; grey heron.

 

17th      Waterhole:  impala, elephant, warthog; Egyptian geese.  Rain starts at around 10.00 pm…….

 

18th      by early morning we have had 34 mm – this will make a big difference as we head towards autumn and winter.

 

19th      Another 6 mm of rain.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra; hammerkop.

 

20th      Waterhole:  impala, warthog.

 

21st      Waterhole:  kudu bull; Egyptian geese.

 

22nd     Waterhole:  impala.

 

23rd      Waterhole:  zebra.

 

24th      Waterhole:  impala.

 

25th      Waterhole:  warthog, waterbuck.  Birdpool:  impala.

 

26th      Waterhole:  impala.  During the evening we cook up a potjie on our house patio with kudu and impala just 10 m away in the dark.

 

27th      Waterhole:  elephant, zebra.

 

28th      Waterhole:  zebra.

 

29th      Waterhole:  impala, zebra, warthog.  Birdpool:  impala.

 

30th      House:  zebras; elephant at 10.00 p.m.  Waterhole:  impala, zebra, kudu, giraffe, elephant, honey badger.  Birdpool:  elephant.

 

31st      Waterhole:  impala, zebra, warthog, elephant; Wahlberg’s eagle, grey heron.  Around 9.00 p.m. a small breeding herd of elephants (three adult females and 2 smaller ones) drinks at the birdpool.  Three move off south; two browse between the lodge and the house and we have to wait at the lodge gate for 10 minutes while they drink at the overflow tank and eat. They push over a corkwood tree which falls through the outer electric fence wires and breaks them – to be repaired next morning! 

 

APRIL 2016

 

1st        Waterhole:  impala, zebra, vervet monkey, fish eagle.  Birdpool: kudu.

 

2nd         Waterhole:  impala, zebra, dwarf mongoose, warthog, elephant. 

 

3rd        Waterhole: elephant, giraffe, warthog.  Birdpool: impala, elephant.  Waterbuck at house and elephants during the night.

 

4th        Waterhole: impala, zebra, kudu, grey heron

 

5th        Waterhole: zebra.  See a lioness en route to the gate.

 

6th        Waterhole: elephant.  Birdpool: kudu.  Impala at house.

 

7th        Waterhole: zebra, waterbuck, warthog, giraffe, elephant, impala.  Birdpool: impala, waterbuck, kudu.

 

8th        Waterhole: lion, black-backed jackal, waterbuck, zebra.  Birdpool: impala.

 

9th        Waterhole: waterbuck.  Birdpool: kudu.

 

10th      Waterhole: impala, giraffe, warthog, zebra.  Birdpool: porcupine, kudu.  Impala & kudu at house.

 

11th      Waterhole: impala, waterbuck, elephant, zebra, warthog, kudu.  Small breeding group of elephants  and kudu family at house pool.

 

12th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, waterbuck, several elephant groups, giraffe, porcupine, hammerkop.  Birdpool: elephant.  Elephants (same small breeding groups as previous night) at house middle of night.

 

13th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, elephant, kudu, waterbuck, warthog.  Birdpool: kudu.

 

14th      Waterhole: impala, zebra. Birdpool: kudu.

 

15th      Waterhole: impala, vervet monkey, African harrier hawk

 

16th      Waterhole: impala, warthog.  Birdpool: warthog.  Baboons at house pool.

 

17th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, waterbuck, kudu, elephant.  Birdpool: kudu.  Impala & kudu at house.

 

18th      Waterhole: impala, kudu, zebra.  Birdpool: kudu, impala.

 

19th      Waterhole: impala, black-backed jackal, zebra, giraffe, elephant, warthog.  Impala and elephant bull “Ezulwini” at house pool; knocks over a corkwood tree next to house.

 

20th      Waterhole: impala, duiker.  Birdpool: duiker.

 

21st      Waterhole: impala, warthog, zebra, waterbuck, giraffe.  Birdpool: impala.

 

22nd     Waterhole: impala, zebra, waterbuck, kudu, two hyenas; black-backed jackal & duiker in the night (duiker appeared to be hiding in the water or perhaps trapped in the mud with only head showing while jackals prowled around edge)

 

23rd      Waterhole: impala, black-backed jackal, waterbuck, zebra, vervet monkey, kudu.  Birdpool: male lion before dawn, impala.  We see Takazile pride 3 females and 6 sub-adults close by on Sable Road.

 

24th      Waterhole: impala, waterbuck, giraffe, duiker.  Birdpool: kudu.  Kudu at house.

 

25th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, waterbuck, vervet monkey, duiker.  Impala, kudu & waterbuck at house.  Banded mongooses at Lodge gate.

 

26th      Waterhole: impala, duiker, waterbuck, zebra, elephant, grey heron.  Birdpool: impala.  Waterbuck at house.

 

27th      Waterhole: impala, giraffe, zebra, kudu, waterbuck.  Birdpool: kudu.  Vervet monkeys by house.

 

28th      Waterhole: impala, black-backed jackal, zebra, giraffe, warthog, cheetah (mid-afternoon), duiker.   Birdpool: impala.

 

29th      Waterhole: hyena, impala.  We here zebra alarm calls close to the lodge at around 7.30 p.m.; an hour later we hear definite carnivore feeding noises in the direction of our house.  We drive out and locate lions on a kill just 80m past our house, return to the lodge and take our guests out for a fantastic sighting.  Three lionesses and 6 sub-adults (Takazile pride) are feeding on a wildebeest carcass:  much snapping and snarling and crunching sounds.  We eventually get back to the lodge around 10.00 p.m.  When we walk back to our house at 10.50 p.m. we are aware of eating sounds close by and from our stoep can see a lioness feeding on the wildebeest skull some 20m away.  The male roared down by the waterhole just before 11.00 p.m. and a few minutes later came running past our stoep from the direction of the kill.  From the look of his bulging belly we guess that he had fed first and then moved off to the waterhole leaving the rest of the pride to have the leftovers.  Looking at the camera trap by the house the next morning we see that 7 lions were at house birdpool at 10.35 p.m. The male and female moved off past the gate soon after 11.00 and then visited the lodge birdpool just before midnight.

 

30th      Waterhole: impala, black-backed jackal, kudu, scrub hare. 1.5 mm of rain in the evening.

 

MAY 2016

 

1st        Waterhole: impala, waterbuck, kudu, grey heron.  Birdpool: impala.

 

2nd       Waterhole: impala, waterbuck, giraffe, warthog, duiker.  Birdpool: impala, duiker.  Kudu at house pool.

 

3rd        Waterhole: impala, waterbuck.  Impala at house pool.

 

4th        Waterhole: impala, giraffe, waterbuck. kudu, duiker.  Birdpool: kudu.  Impala at house pool.

 

5th        Waterhole: waterbuck, duiker, vervet monkey, impala, zebra, giraffe, kudu.  Birdpool: impala. Impala & kudu at house pool.

 

6th        Waterhole: black-backed jackal, giraffe, waterbuck, duiker.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Giraffes near the house during the morning.

 

7th        Waterhole: impala, giraffe, waterbuck, kudu, elephant.  Birdpool: waterbuck.  Kudu bull at house pool.

 

8th        Waterhole: waterbuck, impala, kudu, black-backed jackal.  Birdpool: kudu.

 

9th        Waterhole: impala, zebra, elephant, civet, duiker.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.

 

10th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, waterbuck.  Birdpool: duiker, kudu, vervet monkey. Giraffe at house.

 

11th      Waterhole: impala, waterbuck.  Birdpool: impala.

 

12th      Waterhole: impala, waterbuck, kudu, duiker.  Impala at house pool.

 

13th      Waterhole: impala, warthog, black-backed jackal.  Birdpool: kudu.

 

14th      Waterhole: impala, duiker, kudu, warthog, elephant.  Impala & kudu at house pool.

 

15th      Waterhole: elephants, impala, giraffe, kudu.  Impala at house pool.

 

16th      Waterhole: impala, kudu, buffalo herd, elephant, duiker.  Birdpool: kudu.  1 mm of rain during the night – it settles the dust and no more.

 

17th      Waterhole: impala, warthog, kudu.  Birdpool: impala.

 

18th      Waterhole: impala, waterbuck, zebra, three lions mid-afternoon and then Takazile pride walks by early evening.  Birdpool: kudu.  Impala at house.

 

19th      Waterhole: black-backed jackal, impala, elephant, kudu, vervet monkey.  Birdpool: impala.  Another 1 mm of rain.

 

20th      Waterhole: impala.  Birdpool: duiker.  Elephant at house pool.

 

21st      Waterhole: duiker, impala, warthog, zebra, black-backed jackal.  Birdpool: impala, zebra.

 

22nd     Waterhole: impala.  Birdpool: impala.  We start work clearing a new area for bush sundowners high on the ridge the other side of the waterhole, moving dead wood and debris out of the way and trimming branches.

 

23rd      Waterhole: impala, vervet monkey, zebra, giraffe, black-backed jackal.  Impala at house pool.

 

24th      Waterhole: lions (Takazile pride lionesses and cubs) before dawn, impala, elephant, scrub hare.  Birdpool: elephant.  Elephant by the house and lodge gate during the night.

 

25th      Waterhole: impala, elephant

 

26th      Waterhole: impala, vervet monkey, elephant, giraffe.  4.5 mm of rain in the afternoon/evening – not enough!

 

27th      Waterhole: warthog, impala.  Impala at house pool.

 

28th      Waterhole: impala.  Birdpool: impala.  Kudu by the house.

 

29th      Waterhole: impala, male lion early evening.

 

30th      Waterhole: impala.  Elephant bull “Ezulwini” in front of the lodge.

 

31st      Waterhole: impala, black-backed jackal, duiker

           

JUNE 2016

 

1st        Waterhole: hyena, 6 bull elephants, impala, waterbuck, kudu.  Birdpool: impala, elephants.

 

2nd       Waterhole: Takazile lion pride females and cubs before dawn, elephant, impala.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.  “Ezulwini” elephant bull and three other males at the house in the morning.

 

3rd        Waterhole: elephant, impala.  Birdpool: impala.

 

4th        Waterhole: elephant, impala, kudu, waterbuck, hyena

 

5th        Waterhole: scrub hare, impala, elephant

 

6th        Waterhole: impala.  Birdpool: elephant – “Ezulwini”.  He then moves to our house and we have to chase him off from his favourite maroela tree

 

7th        Waterhole: elephant, impala, waterbuck.  Birdpool: impala.

 

8th        Waterhole: black-backed jackal, elephant, kudu, impala, giraffe, hyena.  Birdpool: elephant.

 

9th        Waterhole: warthog, elephant, kudu, vervet monkey, impala.  Birdpool: elephant.  Five elephant bulls near our house in thre evening – pull out two large red bushwillows.

 

10th      Waterhole: civet, impala, giraffe, black-backed jackal

 

11th      Waterhole: 5 bull elephants.  Birdpool: impala.

 

12th      Waterhole: impala, giraffe, zebra, waterbuck.  BP camera trap stops working – not replaced until mid-August.

 

13th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, elephant

 

14th      Waterhole: impala, vervet monkey, elephant

 

15th      Waterhole: scrub hare, elephant, impala, giraffe

 

16th      Waterhole: duiker, hyena, impala, warthog

 

17th      Waterhole: 4 elephant bulls.  Kudu at house.

 

18th      Waterhole: impala, warthog, buffalo bull, giraffe, scrub hare, duiker

 

19th      Waterhole: zebra, scrub hare

 

20th      Waterhole: impala, kudu, duiker, double-banded sandgrouse

 

21st      Waterhole: warthog, impala, elephant

 

22nd     Waterhole: scrub hare, five elephant bulls

 

23rd      WH camera trap pole pushed over by elephants – not functional until 28th June

 

24th      WH camera trap not functional until 28th June

 

25th      WH camera trap not functional until 28th June

 

26th      WH camera trap not functional until 28th June

 

27th      WH camera trap not functional until 28th June

 

28th      Waterhole: impala, leopard, hyena.  Impala at house.

 

29th      Waterhole: impala, hyena

 

30th      Waterhole: impala, warthog, giraffe, duiker

 

JULY 2016

 

1st        Waterhole: impala, giraffe, warthog, 4 elephant bulls, kudu,

 

2nd       Waterhole: porcupine

 

3rd        Waterhole: warthog, five elephant bulls (who pull neighbours’ camera trap pole – with camera still attached – out of the ground and walk off with it);  impala

 

4th        Waterhole: impala, warthog, elephant

 

5th        Waterhole: warthog.

 

6th        Waterhole: male lion (early hours of the morning), impala, kudu, warthog, elephant.  Elephany at house pool.

 

7th        WH camera trap stops working – replaced on 31 July.

 

8th        Two hyenas at house near midnight.

 

9th        WH camera trap not working

 

10th      BP camera trap not working

 

11th      WH camera trap not working

 

12th        BP camera trap not working

 

13th      WH camera trap not working

 

14th      Impala at house.

 

15th      Impala at house.

 

16th      Vervet monkeys by house.

 

17th      BP camera trap not working

 

18th      Kudu at house.

 

19th      Kudu at house.

 

20th      WH camera trap not working

 

21st      BP camera trap not working

 

22nd     WH camera trap not working

 

23rd      BP camera trap not working

 

24th      WH camera trap not working

 

25th      BP camera trap not working

 

26th      WH camera trap not working

 

27th      Big thunderstorm in the early hours of the morning – 18.5 mm of rain:  all rain is welcome but this is the wrong time of year and is too little to have any impact (but it means we don’t have to water gardens for a few days!)

 

28th      WH camera trap not working

 

29th      WH camera trap not working

 

30th      WH camera trap not working

 

31st      Waterhole: impala, warthog

 

AUGUST 2016

 

1st        Waterhole:  hyena.

 

2nd         Waterhole: impala.

 

3rd        Waterhole: kudu, warthog, Egyptian geese.

 

5th        Waterhole: giraffe, duiker.

 

6th        Waterhole: impala.

 

7th        Waterhole: impala, duiker.

 

9th        Waterhole: elephant.

 

10th      Waterhole: elephant breeding herd.

 

11th      Waterhole: impala, elephants, giraffe.

 

12th      Waterhole: impala, kudu.

 

13th      Waterhole: impala, kudu.

 

14th      Waterhole: impala.

 

15th      Waterhole: kudu.

 

16th      Waterhole: elephants.

 

17th      Waterhole: impala, 5 bull elephants.

 

18th      Waterhole: hammerkop.

 

19th      Waterhole: elephant.

 

20th      Waterhole: lions (Takazile pride females and sub-adults, early hours), hyena, dawn, giraffe, impala, 5 bull elephants, slender mongoose.

 

21st      New high-resolution camera trap put in at the waterhole; waterhole camera moved to birdpool to replace camera that  had not been working for a few weeks.   Birdpool: duiker, civet.  Waterhole: impala, warthog.

 

22nd     Waterhole: impala, African harrier hawk (gymnogene).

 

23rd      Begin work on new brick braai and potjie place for main lodge deck:  continue on and off for next month or so.

 

25th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala.

 

26th      Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: impala, 3 elephant bulls, small breeding herd of elephants,

 

27th      Birdpool: hyena, kudu.  Waterhole: impala, elephant, kudu, honey badger.

 

28th      Waterhole: impala.

 

29th      Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: impala, elephant, kudu, warthog, vervet monkeys.

 

30th      Waterhole: impala, giraffe, elephant.

 

31st      Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: pair of saddle-billed storks, impala, warthog, elephant.

 

SEPTEMBER 2016 

 

1st        Finish improvements to outer lodge electric fence (addition of earth wire).  Birdpool:  elephants just before midnight.  Waterhole: impala, warthog, vervet monkey.  Waterhole: impala, elephants, giraffe, warthog, two hyenas.

 

2nd       Five elephants near house, 12.00 to 2.00 a.m. – chase away several times.  Around 6.00 a.m. find elephants have been in the lodge and fence is down in 6 places, including a section of brick wall:  huge damage!  Birdpool: elephants – the guilty five!; duiker in the evening. 

 

3rd        Birdpool: impala.   Waterhole: elephant, duiker, kudu, impala, warthog.

 

4th        Waterhole: impala, kudu,  group of 8 elephant bulls, warthog.

 

5th        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, duiker.

 

6th        Birdpool: impala, kudu.   Waterhole: impala, giraffe, kudu, duiker.

 

7th        Birdpool: hyena.   Waterhole: impala, kudu, duiker.

 

8th        Birdpool: giraffe.  Waterhole: hyena, kudu, impala, giraffe, honey badger.

 

9th        Waterhole: impala, kudu, giraffe, zebra, elephant.

 

10th      Birdpool: impala, elephant.  Waterhole: elephant, giraffe, duiker.

 

11th      Waterhole: hyena, impala, warthog, giraffe.

 

12th      Birdpool: elephant.  Waterhole: impala, elephant, duiker.

 

13th      Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, warthog, Wahlberg’s eagle.

 

14th      Waterhole: zebra.

 

15th      Birdpool: impala, baboon.  Waterhole: impala, baboon, three elephant bulls, kudu bulls, double-banded sandgrouse.

 

16th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, slender mongoose, warthog, Egyptian geese, scrub hare.

 

17th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: warthog, impala, giraffe.

 

18th      7 mm of rain. 

 

19th      Waterhole: impala

 

20th      Waterhole: male lion soon after midnight,  impala.

 

21st      . Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: impala, pair of African hawk eagles, elephants (3 bulls)

 

22nd     Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, African hawk eagle, duiker, giraffe.

 

23rd      Smash up brick wall knocked over by elephants after other repairs done by contractor.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, warthog.

 

24th      Began long-term task of putting rocks along all pole sections of fence.  Waterhole: slender mongoose, elephant, impala, hyena, duiker.

 

25th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, yellow-billed stork.

 

26th      Birdpool: hyena, elephant.   Waterhole: impala, yellow-billed stork.

 

27th      Waterhole: impala, kudu, group of 5 bull elephants, giraffe, yellow-billed stork, hyena.

 

28th      3.5 mm of rain.  Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: duiker, two male lions, impala, kudu.

 

29th      Waterhole: grey heron.

 

30th      Finish brickwork for new deck braai.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Waterhole: hyena, impala, yellow-billed stork.

           

OCTOBER 2016

 

1st        11 mm of rain during the early hours of the morning – big thunderstorm!  Waterhole: giraffe.

 

2nd       Our guests see lions take down a buffalo during afternoon game drive.  Birdpool: impala, giraffe.  Waterhole: impala, hyena.

 

3rd        Start rendering new deck braai brickwork.  Birdpool: porcupine.  Waterhole: impala.

 

4th        Waterhole: kudu, impala, giraffe, Egyptian geese.

 

5th        Finish rendering of new deck braai.

 

6th        Birdpool: small elephant breeding herd.  Waterhole: impala, warthog, elephant.

 

7th        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: hyena, impala, yellow-billed stork, giraffe, kudu, warthog; two buffalo bulls – very thin with rib, shoulder blade and hip bones showing clearly.

 

8th        Waterhole: elephant, kudu, impala, giraffe, duiker.

 

9th        Birdpool: impala, giraffe.  Waterhole: impala, grey heron, three bull elephants, yellow-billed stork.

 

10th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, duiker, kudu.

 

11th      Ezulwini and smaller elephant bull with left tusk only at house – had to chase off from marula trees.  Birdpool: impala, kudu, elephant.  Waterhole: hyena, elephant,  impala, duiker.

 

12th      Finish new main deck braai.  Work on new garden area included in lodge garden after extending fence following elephant damage at start of September.  Waterhole: hammerkop, impala, zebra, warthog.

 

13th      Three giraffe by house, plus kudu and impala.  Birdpool: giraffe.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe.

 

14th      2.3 mm rain.  Birdpool: impala.

 

15th      Finish the planting in the new garden area at the lodge.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Waterhole: yellow-billed stork, impala, elephant, kudu.

 

16th        Birdpool: warthogs.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, elephant.

 

17th      Waterhole: kudu bull.

 

18th      2 mm rain.  Rebuild the firewood stores.  Birdpool: kudu, giraffe.  Waterhole: impala.

 

19th      Birdpool: giraffe.  Waterhole: duiker, grey heron, waterbuck.

 

20th      Birdpool: impala, giraffe.  Waterhole: giraffe, impala, kudu, hammerkop, elephant, yellow-billed stork.

 

21st      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, vervet monkeys.

 

22nd     Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, pair of African hawk eagles.

 

23rd      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: kudu, impala, two elephant bulls, kudu.

 

24th      9 mm rain around dawm.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Waterhole: buffalo, impala, Egyptian geese.

 

25th      5 mm rain.  Birdpool: giraffe.  Waterhole: giraffe, kudu.

 

26th      Work on water-deflecting humps on borehole track.

 

27th      Waterhole: kudu, impala, vervet monkeys.

 

28th      Waterhole: kudu, impala, two young bull elephants, giraffe.

 

29th      Birdpool: kudu, giraffe.  Waterhole: impala, kudu.

 

30th      Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: giraffe, vervet monkey.

 

31st      Birdpool: vervet monkeys.  Waterhole: kudu, duiker, giraffe.

 

NOVEMBER 2016 

 

1st        Waterhole: giraffe.

 

5th        Waterhole: two hyenas, duiker, scrub hare.

 

8th        Birdpool: kudu.  Waterhole: duiker.

 

9th        4 mm rain during night. 

 

10th      Waterhole: impala.

 

11th      Rain at 5.30 am for three hours – 42 mm!  The river behind the waterhole flows strongly.  Birdpool: impala.   Waterhole: impala

 

12th        Rain – 10 mm more.  Waterhole: impala, kudu.

 

13th      4mm rain.  Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, giraffe.

 

14th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: giraffe.

 

15th      Waterhole: impala.

 

16th      Repair work to water deflecting humps and drains in the lodge.

 

17th      Birdpool: waterbuck.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, buffalo bull.

 

18th      Birdpool: giraffe.

 

19th      Dig out mitre drains and repair humps on south-eastern tracks.

 

20th      Waterhole: impala.

 

21st      Waterhole: impala, elephant.

 

22nd     Waterhole: impala, giraffe, elephant.

 

23rd      Waterhole: impala, giraffe.

 

24th      3mm rain.  Birdpool: hyena.  Waterhole: lioness (2.30 a.m.)

 

25th      8 mm rain.

 

27th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, kudu.

 

28th      Waterhole: impala, giraffe.

 

29th      15 mm rain.  Waterhole: impala.

 

30th      5 mm rain.  Waterhole: impala, elephant.

 

 

 

DECEMBER 2016 

 

1st        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: waterbuck, impala, elephant, kudu, giraffe.

 

2nd         Birdpool: hyena.

 

3rd        Birdpool: vervet monkey.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe.

 

4th        Waterhole: impala, elephant.

 

5th        Waterhole: impala, giraffe, kudu.

 

6th        Birdpool: scrub hare.  Waterhole: zebra, waterbuck, impala.

 

7th        5 male lions kill a buffalo 150 m from our house, just off the track to the borehole, during the early hours of the morning.  The lions left mid-morning but remained in the area: we saw them on Sable Road just after dark.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Waterhole: impala.

 

8th        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, Egyptian geese, zebra.

 

9th        Namaqua dove by our house- this is a bird of the region but not one we see often at the lodge.  Birdpool: impala, giraffe.  Waterhole: giraffe, impala, zebra, warthog.

 

10th      Birdpool: impala, waterbuck.

 

11th      14.5 mm of rain.  We see an orange breasted bush-shrike by the Mohlope River during a morning drive; at dusk we see a leopard crossing the open area between the lodge and the waterhole.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe.

 

12th      Waterhole: impala, elephant.

 

13th      Birdpool: impala, waterbuck, elephant, hyena.  Waterhole: kudu, impala, elephants (including one with floppy ear, giraffe. 

 

14th      1 mm rain.  Elephants on the ridge behind the waterhole.  Birdpool: elephant breeding group, hyena.  Waterhole: impala, waterbuck, elephant, kudu.

 

15th      1.6 mm of rain in the early hours.  Waterhole: zebra.

 

16th      14 mm of rain in the evening.  A small breeding herd of elephants (including a very small calf) drinks at the house birdpool around 10.15 p.m.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, zebra, kudu, waterbuck, Egyptian geese

 

17th      .We discover an old apple-leaf tree down across one of the tracks behind the waterhole.  Waterhole: zebra, herd of 6 wildebeest, grey heron.

 

18th      Waterhole: impala, kudu, elephant.

 

19th      Clear the apple-leaf and also some knobthorns elephants had brought down across the river bed. Birdpool: baboon.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, Takazile lion pride females and sub-adults at 7.30 p.m.

 

20th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: zebra, giraffe, impala, kudu.

 

21st      On drive we see elephants on Leopard’s View, more elephants elsewhere and the Takazile lion pride females and youngsters, 2 of which were breaking open leopard tortoises and eating them.  Waterhole: impala, wildebeest herd, elephant.

 

22nd     12.5 mm of rain in the afternoon during a huge thunderstorm:  the temperature drops from over 39oC to 28!  Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, giraffe, yellow-billed stork.

 

23rd      Another afternoon thunderstorm – 3 mm.  Waterhole: giraffe.

 

24th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: waterbuck male.

 

25th      1.6 mm rain in the late afternoon.  Kudu family and 2 waterbuck at the house birdpool in the evening.  Birdpool: waterbuck male.  Waterhole: Wahlberg’s eagle.

 

26th     

 

27th      Waterhole:Takazile lion pride females and youngsters at 1.30 a.m.; impala, giraffe, vervet monkey during the day.

 

28th      9 mm of rain late evening.  We take our guests to a hide on the Olifants River in the late afternoon – see Pel’s fishing owl, white-crowned lapwing, trumpeter hornbill amongst various others.  Waterhole: impala, zebra, warthog, elephant, duiker.

 

29th      On a morning bird drive we see 20+ species, including orange-breatsed bush-shrike, violet-backed starling, Marico sunbird.  Birdpool: impala.

 

30th      We see an African golden oriole on drive.  Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala.

 

31st      At 7.30 p.m., while we are having a braai on the patio by our house, a leopard drinks for some 5 minutes at the house birdpool just 25 m away.

 

JANUARY 2017 

 

1st        Wild dogs on the property but we aren’t lucky enough to see them.  Leopard at the waterhole.  Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala.

 

2nd       Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: waterbuck male, impala, elephant.

 

3rd        Rain from about 8.30 p.m. onwards through the night – 40 mm by 10.oo p.m. and the river behind the waterhole flowing strongly.  Waterhole: yellow-billed stork, warthog, kudu, impala.

 

4th        Rain continues till 5 a.m. – total of 48 mm from the night.

 

5th        Waterhole: impala.

 

6th        Waterhole: zebra, impala, giraffe, two lionesses at 5.30 a.m.

 

7th        Birdpool: waterbuck male.  Waterhole: zebra.

 

8th       

 

9th        Birdpool: impala, hyena.  Waterhole: elephant.

 

10th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala.

 

11th      Two elephants down the hill from the lodge decks.  Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: elephant, impala.

 

12th      Brubru in the lodge gardens.  Waterhole: impala, waterbuck male, elephant.

 

13th      The whole of the Takazile lion pride (male, 3 females and 6 sub-adults) drink at the house birdpool around 11.15 a.m.; then move to the lodge birdpool.   Waterhole: impala, waterbuck male.

 

14th      Birdpool: baboon.  Waterhole: two lionesses at 9.40 a.m., impala, elephant, giraffe.

 

15th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, warthog.

 

16th     

 

17th      Birdpool: two lionesses around 3.30 a.m.; impala in the day.

 

18th      Birdpool: impala.

 

19th      We hear lion, leopard and hyena calling, all quite close.  We struggle to identify a hooting type of call, probably a bird:  we have heard it on several occasions recently at night.  Waterhole: impala, zebra.

 

20th      Hyena in the house birdpool at 1.45 a.m.  Birdpool: hyena, impala.  Waterhole: impala, zebra, warthog.

 

21st      Birdpool: slender mongoose, impala, baboon.

 

22nd     Birdpool: impala, warthog.

 

23rd      Birdpool: impala, baboon, hyena.

 

24th      Birdpool: impala, warthog.  Waterhole: impala.

 

25th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala.

 

26th      4 mm rain early hours of the morning.  Waterhole camera trap runs out of battery power till 2nd February.

 

27th      Birdpool: impala.

 

28th      A pair of Verreaux’s eagle-owls calls all night in a dead tree by the house birdpool.  Birdpool: warthog, impala.

 

29th      Birdpool: impala.

 

30th      7.5 mm of rain on and off during the day.  Birdpool: impala, baboon.

 

31st      3 mm rain.  Birdpool: impala.

           

FEBRUARY 2017

 

1st       

 

2nd       Birdpool: impala.

 

3rd        Waterhole: floppy eared elephant during the day; another young bull in the night.

 

4th        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, zebra, kudu, warthog, wildebeest with small calf.

 

5th        Lioness at waterhole 6.15 a.m.  Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala.

 

6th        Lioness at waterhole 9.00 a.m.  Birdpool: kudu, baboon.  Waterhole: impala, warthog.

 

7th        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, elephant;  pack of 14 wild dogs at about 7.00 p.m.; hyena later in the evening.

 

8th        Birdpool camera trap stopped working – batteries – until 21st February.  Waterhole: hyena, impala, kudu.

 

9th        Waterhole: impala, giraffe, zebra, warthog, kudu.

 

10th      A troop of banded mongooses has been living on and off under our tool shed:  not a problem in itself but the smell inside the shed and around it is horrendous.  We start to mongoose-proof the shed so that they cannot get in underneath.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, kudu.

 

11th      We continue work on the mongoose defences!  Brown snake-eagle on the dead tree in front of our house.  Waterhole: impala, kudu (including a large-horned male), zebra.

 

12th      Waterhole: kudu, warthog, impala, zebra.

 

13th      We dig out mitre drains and tracks near the lodge and on the south-eastern cutline.  Waterhole: impala, kudu, giraffe, elephant.

 

14th      Finish digging out mitre drains on the remaining tracks.  Waterhole: yellow-billed storks, elephant.

 

15th      When not sleeping under the shed, the banded mongoose have been sleeping inside the Kudu hut drainage soak-away – and have been destroying its walls:  we begin work on mongoose-proofing the soak-away.  Waterhole: elephant (floppy ear), hammerkop

 

16th        We finish the Kudu Hut soak-away defences.  I mm of rain.  Waterhole: impala.

 

17th      16 mm of rain.  Waterhole: impala, zebra.

 

18th      Waterhole: zebra.

 

19th     

 

20th      6.5 mm of rain in the night.  Waterhole: giraffe.

 

21st      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: small breeding group of elephants during the evening.

 

22nd     5 mm rain during the day.  Waterhole: zebra.

 

23rd      A further 5 mm of rain in the early morning.   

 

24th      Waterhole: zebra.

 

25th      3 mm rain.  Birdpool: vervet monkey.  Waterhole: giraffe, zebra, impala.

 

26th      1.6 mm rain.   

 

27th      Waterhole: giraffe, zebra, impala.

 

28th      Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, warthog.

 

MARCH 2017

 

1st        Waterhole: impala.

 

2nd       A leopard drinks at the house birdpool around 10.00 p.m.  Waterhole: impala, giraffe, warthog.

 

3rd        Birdpool: warthog.  Waterhole: impala, warthog, zebra.

 

4th        Birdpool: warthog. Impala.  Waterhole: impala, warthog.

 

5th        0.5 mm rain.  A flock of 10 white storks spends much of the morning at the waterhole and in the open area between the water and the lodge.  Waterhole: zebra, giraffe, kudu, warthog.

 

6th        23.5 mm of rain from 1.00 a.m. onwards – big thunderstorm.  Waterhole: giraffe.

 

7th        Birdpool: baboon.  Waterhole: duiker, zebra.

 

8th        Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, zebra, brown snake-eagle.

 

9th        16 mm rain during the day and night.  Birdpool: impala.  Waterhole: impala, zebra, giraffe, large groups of glossy starlings.

 

10th      Waterhole: impala, zebra.

 

11th      We replace the energy expensive floodlight at the lodge birdpool with a low wattage LED one:  new one is very effective.  Waterhole: impala, warthog, giraffe, zebra.

 

12th        Bronze-winged courser seen on evening drive:  we haven’t seen this bird during the last two years of drought.  Waterhole: impala, zebra.

 

13th      We replace the 500W floodlight at the waterhole with a 50W LED: not bright enough so we will add a second one.  Birdpool: impala, kudu.  Waterhole: impala, baboon, warthog, zebra.

 

14th      Waterhole: zebra.

 

15th      Added another 50W LED light at the waterhole:  works well at 1/5 of the energy consumption of the old one.  Waterhole: impala, warthog, baboon, giraffe, zebra, elephants.

 

16th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, baboon, warthog.

 

17th      An elephant pushes over a large marula tree near to where we are having sundowners in the bush with our guests:  we drive in and get great views of him feeding.  Waterhole: giraffe, zebra.

 

18th      Waterhole: impala, giraffe, warthog, zebra; elephant breeding group during the night.

 

19th      Waterhole: warthog, impala, zebra, giraffe.

 

20th      Waterhole: zebra.

 

21st      Waterhole: hyena, giraffe, zebra, impala.

 

22nd     6.20 a.m.: two wild dogs by our house; they run off but a short while later three wild dogs drink at the house birdpool and a 4th passes by further down the hill.  Waterhole: impala, zebra.

 

23rd      Waterhole: impala, zebra, warthog, elephant, giraffe, duiker.

 

24th      1.7 mm rain.  Waterhole: impala, baboon, kudu, giraffe, zebra.

 

25th      Waterhole: elephant breeding group, hyena, impala, zebra.

 

26th      Waterhole: zebra, giraffe.

 

27th      Waterhole: impala, zebra, hyena.

 

28th      We prepare anti-squirrel netting materials to put on Giraffe Hut.  Waterhole: warthog, impala, kudu, giraffe.

 

29th      We start putting up anti-squirrel netting under the eaves of Giraffe Hut.  Warthog, scrub hare, impala, zebra, giraffe, kudu, duiker and hyena at waterhole during the 24 hours.

 

30th      Giraffe netting finished.  While we are working on the netting, around 6.15 a.m., two wild dogs chase an adult impala past the front of the lodge; shortly afterwards they pursue a fawn and an hour later drink at the house birdpool and then move off down our entrance road.  Waterhole: impala, zebra.

 

31st      Waterhole: impala, baboon, warthog, zebra.

 

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Leopard’s View Game Lodge