Sunday, May 15, 2011

Karula's movements over the last week!

The family treed, on the PM drive of the 7th May

Hi everyone!
I hope you had chance to read Marcs Blog on the wonderful drive with the Nkuhuma females and cubs and the remarkably quick kill made by Karula, highlighting how swift and deadly she can be. For those who may have missed what has been happening with the lady I follow on from Marc's morning drive from the 7th May.

Karula had taken the kill into the drainage line, which is where Ruan caught up with her on PM safari. A lone hyena wondered in scattering thankfully the cubs and Karula made it into the tree in time!

Two notched female on the prowl, May 8th
In the morning of the 8th, Ruan made his way back to the place he left Karula and found the small family enjoying the early golden sun rays, but the tranquility was interrupted once again by the hyena clan charging in. The female with the two notches in her right ear was on of the culprits! The cubs scattered and in a nail bitting moment, one cub only just managed to make it into a tree after running towards one of the hyenas!  Karula to leave the area, she made her way to Impala plains, taking refuge on the huge termite mound with the false marula growing out of it.

One of the cubs finding an awkward perch 
 I made my way there in the afternoon, but had no joy finding them. WE left the area for a bit and returned after someone had seen the cubs on MMM at the junction with Impala plains, but by the time we got there the cubs had gone into hiding once more, possibly because there was a hyena snooping around further up the road. I looked in the area they were last seen in case they made an appearance but didn’t want to go into the bush to look in case it would draw attention to their hiding place,  better to leave them be than risk detection. The light was fading fast so WE left them to their own devises.

Karula and cub AM drive 8th May
She was seen with the cubs the following morning with Marc on May 9th Vuyatela access heading towards the open area, where we later learned she had made a kill and was in the process of taking her cubs there.

Sadly we were not able to broadcast in the afternoon as somebody mistook our mast equipment for someone else, quite how I don’t know, but that was why! My self and Marc decided to head out to see Karula and get some footage of her as she was sitting right on our doorstep! She was resting in a dead possibly Marula tree, with the cubs just where our drive way joins Vuyatela access! What a priviledge it was to sit with her for nearly 3 hours, enjoying the peace and tranquility. Both of us were hoping the cubs would play in the sunlight, but they kept to the bush!

Female cub on the left, the male on the right! 9th May

Once the sun set we left them and found Karula had move the kill from the ground to a nearby tree as we drove passed to the house for dinner!

Since then WE have heard she treed her mother Safari who was seen hunting by Baboon pan around the 13th. What the reason for this was, I doubt we will ever know!

Shirley, one of the female baboons, has finally given birth to a baby boy, Graham has named it Genesis. It is just about 2 weeks old now! Evelyn is enjoying having a new playmate which is smaller than her! I have tried to get pictures as they walk through camp, but she is very shy! Graham has managed to get some good shots though!

Karula and Male cub PM 9th May.
Lastly WE found 2 of the Styx on drive this morning on Phillamon’s cutline. On AM drive I thought they were from the Nkuhumas from information gathered on the radio, not seeing them too well, from what I saw it looked like one of the mothers and the alpha female. It was only on PM drive did we see the young female properly who was not lactating and the older female with her right ear bent, could we see clearly it was the Styx females!

I hope you enjoy reading the update, sorry for the delay, I have finally managed to get pictures of the right sides of the cubs, so will be sharing those with everyone soon! 

Thank you once again to everyone sending in pictures of the Karula, the cubs and Hyenas. Please keep them coming in! They always help! 

Written by Tara


  1. Those are some fantastic photos!
    ~Anthony Corvelli

  2. Your updates are always fun to read and informative for those viewers, like me, who can't watch all the drives! Merci! Merci!