It is great to be back from leave, having the new sights, smells and sounds of the revitalised bush to relish in! With a relaxed week of sightings, there have still been some gems!
Marc finding Karula checking for den sites around Zoe's road is certainly a highlight this week! She is past her due date and he reported her to have been much thinner in appearance than when we last her! He first bumped into her on Gowrie dam wall after drive on the 16th and after following tracks the following morning, found her checking a couple of possible new den sites!
It was 1 and 2 August she was seen mating with Yambilu-Jordaan. With a gestation of around 100 days, the cubs will be born small, blind and helpless. She will need to keep them hidden away and she may move den sites many times to avoid detection by other predators. If we are lucky we may see her out hunting, but it may be 4 to 6 weeks before we catch our first glimpse of the tiny bundles of fur! I am, as I am sure you are, extremely excited for this moment!
I had my fair share of magic moments this week, including spending time with the crash of 5 male rhino, seeing the matriarch hyena floppy ear, with her clan and seeing a new species of bird and plant! The vivid orange of the lion eye, Tricliceras longipedunculatum, caught my eye as we drove by on Gowrie main and later on seeing the greater spotted cuckoo and the Jacobin cuckoos courting!
I wonder what African bush secrets will be revealed next week! I can't wait to find out!
Written by Tara Pirie