25 Feb

6-8 January 2017



Thanda Impi males


The Thanda Impi males spent the majority of this time on their Buffalo kill at Ingwe manzi. On the morning of the 8th, we were following one of the Mbiri females, who was contact calling, and both of the males pitched up looking for her. She eventually moved south west towards manor house, but the Thanda impi’s kept looking and smelling for her at Xigamba pan, while a soft rain fell. Sizanani was moving a lot better than he had, and his leg injury that we were worried about seems to be healing well.

Sizanani looking for the calling Mbiri female. ISO 800, f4, 1/100sec


Mbiri pride


Also only the one sighting of one of the Mbiri lionesses in the 3 days. On the morning of the 8th, we located one of the Lionesses, calling for the rest of the pride. She only managed to attract the Thanda Impi’s though. During this period where prides have cubs, they can lose contact with one another, as they separate to imprint on the cubs, but being social cats, they do still look for the social contact.

Looking for her pride. She gave the soft, murmurs of a contact call. ISO 800, f4, 1/30sec




Ntsuntsu male


We only had the one Leopard sighting over the 3 days, and it had to be the Ntsuntsu male Leopard on Red road. This combination of leopard and location, had become a very common call on the radio. When I arrived there, he was sleeping on a Termite mound. Soon after I arrived, he moved and climbed a tree, before settling down for the rest of the afternoon. As I mentioned in a previous blog, he and 2 other Leopards are currently competing over this particular area, so its become a bit of a hot spot for leopard in the last few months. His sister has also set her eyes on the area, so its probably better if one of the other males successfully takes the north western manyeleti.

And stretch! ISO 500, f6.3, 1/800sec




As it often happens in the Manyeleti, when it rains it pours. The afternoon of the 7th, was a perfect example of this. We had 2 separate Cheetah sightings on 1 afternoon. One male was seen on Metsikitsoro plains, before disappearing to the south. At the same time, another male was found on bee-eater drive, lying in an open area. We settled down with the male on Bee-eater as a soft rain came down, on what was still very dry manyeleti.


Other views from the bush


After some rain towards the end of 2016, the Buffalo herds have made a welcome return to the manyeleti. ISO 1000, f7.1, 1/100sec

A full Khoka Moya Dam is something we haven’t seen in almost 2 years. The Buffalo herds surely are enjoying the water supply in some of the best grazing land of the Manyeleti. ISO 1600, f6.3, 1/400sec

A dangerous dance. Male giraffe fight by swinging their necks at one another and using their heads as battering rams. It can resemble a ritualistic dance. ISO 1250, f7.1, 1/500sec


Thanks for reading


Darren and the Tintswalo Safari Team.