Elephant Plains Safari: Hyenas Steal Impala Kill

ODP Safaris, Outdoorphoto, Wildlife Safaris, Photographic Safaris, Wildlife Photography, Wim van den Heever, Elephant Plains, Greater Kruger, Sabi Sand Reserve, Brendon Cremer, Leopard, Hyenas, Impala Kill, Saddle-billed Storks, Shadow,  Leopard Cub

Brendon Reports from Elephant Plains: Hyenas Steal Impala Kill

We have really been spoiled here, seeing so much at every turn, that when a day like today comes around we think for a moment that it was a quiet day … but read on! It was anything but …

We decided to start by finding any tracks to follow. This brought us to 6 hyenas with a large Impala ram that they must have stolen from one of the leopards in the area, but we were unsure which one. The 6 busily feeding hyenas kept us busy until sunrise, when we decided to visit the hyena den.

We arrived at the hyena den to see the the clan emerging from their den. The pups greeted the morning with great glee, racing around, chasing each other through the bush and up and down the roads, full of energy and a delight to watch and to photograph as they entertained us for ages.

4 Hyena pup Bren BOC-1

Before the time came to return to the Lodge we tried to find more tracks to follow – and although we found some promising lion tracks, there was no sign of the lions anywhere.

This afternoon our first stop was to photograph 2 Buffalo Bulls lying in the sand and mud right next to a pan.

Not far away two Saddle-billed Storks were enjoying a bumper time as they grabbed fish from small pond. They are having a field day because the small dams and waterholes are rapidly drying up as the dry season advances. The fish in these dams and waterholes are trapped in the diminishing amount of water and are easy pickings for the storks.

4 Saddle-billed Bren BOC2-1

We were very pleased to find Salayexe and her cub’s tracks, and although we didn’t manage to catch up with them, it is always reassuring to see that they are well, and to keep tabs on the areas they visit.

Hearing that Shadow and her youngster had been spotted we immediately went in that direction. The youngster lay on a very small, grassy termite mound with a lovely red and orange sky behind him –

4 Leopard Night Bren BOC1-1

– while his mother went about her evening chores. We followed her until she disappeared into the darkness.

Eventually the youngster decided to follow his mother and also melted away into the thick bush.

Tomorrow morning we will enjoy our final game drive for this safari and everyone is hoping for one last sighting of Salayexe and her cub before returning home …

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