Fanus Shares from the Botswana Khwai, Savute, Chobe SafariSafari: Matsebe, the Notch-eared Leopard
It was quite an experience to arrive at the famed Khwai River Lodge in its stunning, pristine setting, and as everyone was here by 15:00, we got together for our briefing, then assembled our camera gear, and were ready for our first game drive.
As always, this unspoiled area has so much to see – beautiful birds, and wildlife to delight any nature photographer. Zebras roamed around, stately waterbuck gazed at us as our cameras were kept busy, busy, busy.
Then we turned northwards – this turned out to be the best decision ever as we didn’t travel far before we stumbled across a female leopard. She is easily identifiable as she has a notch in her ear – giving her the name Matsebe. The ‘ma’ part of her name identifies her as a mother, and ‘tsebe’ points to her unique ear. She has a cub stashed away somewhere, but we didn’t get to see it.
We remained with Matsebe for some time, actually for the remainder of our drive. After resting for a short while she started hunting. We followed at a discreet distance. She didn’t find anything close enough or unaware enough to stalk, and gave up to lie down for a rest.
After quite some time Matsebe, almost without warning, sprang up, and with one bound she was high up in a tree.
By now the lovely sky behind her was turning to a deep, rich blue – fabulous photos!
She paced around, and scrutinized the area from up there until finally she jumped down again and melted away into the gathering darkness.
Maybe we will start the morning with a visit to this area to try and find her again …
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