Skip to main content

Sabi Sand Elephant Plains Safari: Salayexe Hunts Again …

By March 15, 2017March 8th, 2018Sabi Sand Photo Safari

Brendon’s Bulletin from Elephant Plains at Sabi Sand Game Reserve …

More info about this safari may be found here.

(Images from the back of Brendon’s Camera)

Naturally, after yesterday, we were anxious to return to Salayexe, the female leopard with her young kudu kill, and we started in that direction as soon as we were able to leave the Lodge this morning.

On the way to find her, who should come strolling down the road towards us, but Salayexe herself. We stopped to photograph and to follow her, and were soon interrupted by some hyenas. They chased her up a small fallen down tree and we were able to take advantage of the great photographic opportunities that this gave us. The light was superb and when she sprawled out on a branch some great images were captured by everyone.

Salayexe came down from the tree when the sun started to warm the bushveld, and she flopped down in some long, cool grass. She was no longer clearly visible and possibly would not stir for some time so we pushed off.

As we scrounged around we had some excellent bird sightings. There were plenty of colourful Little Bee-eaters around, and different eagles like a magnificent Martial Eagle.

We stopped for our morning coffee break at Big Dam, where we enjoyed watching the hippos cavorting in the Dam while we enjoyed coffee and snacks.

All too soon it was time to return to the Lodge to pack up and say farewell to our first group, and await the arrival of the next safari guests.

The new group had all assembled by lunch time, and were really thrilled to hear from the others about all the amazing sightings and experiences of the past days. Needless to say, everyone was really eager to get going, so after introductions and a quick briefing we assembled at the vehicles, ready to go.

We started with a visit to Salayexe, and found her exactly where we had left her in the morning in the long grass. We waited to see if she would wake up and maybe climb into a nearby tree and settle on a branch again.

While we waited a Woodlands Kingfisher landed directly above us. It had a scorpion in its beak, and we had plenty of time to compose and capture some fabulous shots. Then the kingfisher started to call, and we heard a number of chicks calling in nearby tree (the same tree next to Salayexe), where we spotted a small hole. Next the kingfisher flew to the hole and started to feed the scorpion to the noisy little chicks. While we waited for the leopard to wake up, the bird returned two or three times, each time with food to feed the little ones. It was wonderful to watch.

Eventually Salayexe did exactly what we wanted! She woke up, stretched a bit and then climbed the tree to settle on the most ideal of the exposed branches.

6 Leopard EP Brendon March 2017 1

She behaved perfectly for us! She yawned a bit, settled down, looked around, and finally as darkness started to overtake the countryside our spotlights came out to photograph her as she came down from her perch and enjoyed a drink before she started stalking and hunting a herd of impala.

6 Leopard EP Brendon March 2017 2

And that is exactly where we plan to start in the morning – to see if she hunted successfully or will hunt again in the early morning …


Leave a Reply