We were out in the bush moments before dawn, keen to check on the lion kills from yesterday. We arrived at the kudu kill and found that it had been totally polished off during the night. The lions, however, were still close by. Still very full and rather rotund with their distended bellies, they lay inert on the ground, hardly twitching an ear. The early morning light was really glowing and our shots of the lazy cats look really good.
We decided to see what else we could find, and before long we bumped into a magnificent male lion. He was strolling around, and we kept pace with him for some time. He looked so very proud and healthy and to our delight he posed regally for us in some lovely open areas.
When he went to lie in a shady spot, we drove on and this time found a pride of lions. It was a small pride with only one adult female with five youngsters, around two to the years old. Unlike the others lions we have seen, these were lean and very hungry. We could see that they had not eaten for days. They were watching the surrounding game carefully, and became very alert and gazed intently when a herd of giraffe arrived at a waterhole for a drink. Impala, warthogs, and kudu also captured their attention. It was interesting to watch them as they sized up any possible prey, but they didn’t actually start to hunt.
Thee are large herds of buffalo around – one of which numbered in excess of a thousand animals. And elephants are dotted all around the plains in small and larger herds.
While we were back at the camp a huge bank of clouds built up and we experienced a storm, so when we left this afternoon there was still a light rain falling and the world was damp all around, with that delicious fresh rain smell permeating the air.
We returned to the lions … the first pride was still lying there, flat and not moving. We then found the male lion lying on top of a termite mound, surveying his world, and we could collect another set of great images. There were dark clouds creating a dramatic backdrop, with a large herd of buffalo roaming around on the plain behind him. We spent much of the afternoon with him, the scene was so lovely.
On the way back to camp we encountered hyenas, and moments later we saw a Genet with two tiny babies. They were just too cute and tiny with their spotty fur and fluffy tails, and our cameras worked very fast to ensure that we had those images. They were very relaxed, and the kittens barely reacted to our presence.
Leopards eluded us today, so we would like to start our morning with a thorough search for one of them …