Saturday, March 19, 2011

Happy Birthday Karula!

Hi everyone!

I am hoping the Diva of Djuma is going to make an appearance on drive today, so WE can celebrate her 7th birthday with her! In human terms she would be in her late 20's. Having had 2 litters already, her 3rd cubs are around 4 months old now and she is doing a great job at keeping them well hidden, away from any potential danger. This she has proved efficient at, having had a 100% success rate so far with the previous cubs. The eldest have families of their own and the boys are getting to that age where they might start to move away. It maybe another year or so before they will get to sire cubs though. It is anyones guess when they will make the leap and move out of the area or if it will happen at all! The leopards in the Sabi sands are full of surprises, as we have seen, anything is possible! I must admit I am enjoying every encounter and learning more from them each time, as I am sure you are too!

I was hoping Shirley, from the Gowrie Gang, would have given birth today to make it a double celebration as she is heavily pregnant, but as yet the troop have not been seen today. Lets hope WE find her to see if there is a new member of the troop!

I have had news of Karula though! The Nkoro and Arathusa guides have told me she has been seen with the cubs West of triple M, which is our Western boundary. This does mean the owner of the leopard tracks on Cheetah cutline found a few days ago may have to remain a mystery! It could have been Karula looking for food or another female crossing into her territory. Either is possible!

Karula is a such a special leopard in more ways than one. To nature, she is just a leopard who has good bush sense and survival skills, but to us she is so much more. She has not only expanded our minds by giving us an incredible insight into her successful life so far, which has been impressive even by leopard standards, as cub mortality can be high. She has also melted our hearts by allowing us to follow her life so closely, she has brought so many people together by being such a relaxed and charismatic lady and I hope WE all share many more years and memories with her!

Happy Birthday Karula!

Written by Tara
On the 15/03/2011

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