Southern Africa Bush Tails

South Africa Camp News – May 2013

Weekly Sightings of the MalaMala Seven: 21 – 27 April 2013

Here are the sightings for the week ending 27 April 2013:
 Number of lion sightings: 14
 Number of leopard sightings: 18
 Number of elephant sightings: 40
 Number of buffalo sightings: 19
 Number of wild dog sightings: 2
 Number of cheetah sightings: 0
 Number of rhino sightings: 0
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Tanda Tula
Special Times at Tanda Tula Safari Camp
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It’s been an exciting few days in our area of the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve. I managed to get a wonderful sequence of shots last w eek of Rockfig Jnr and her sub -adult cub having a rough and tumble in the late afternoon.

These big five animals can be very playful at times, providing much entertainment to visitors of our safari camp.
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The young male cub is now larger than his mother and should be self sufficient very soon and it was fascinating to watch the interaction between mother and son.

Having a tumble

Her tolerance of him grows shorter by the day, and after an initial friendly greeting tempers started to flair as he started throwing his superior weight around. Still, she put him in his place very quickly with a swift paw to the head!


He immediately took on a very subdued approach and as Mom calmed down he slowly tried to cosy on up to her again.
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I am sure she will becoming into oestrus again very soon and will be covered by the large territorial male in the area. So time is ticking on the young male’s presence in his mother’s territory, as he will soon have to go out and fend for himself completely alone.

Mom and cub
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Interesting times await and we will keep you up to date on his progress. Playtime over.
 
 
Tswalu Kalahari Reserve – The velvet raisin bush
by Tswalu Kalahari on April 26, 2013
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The velvet raisin plant (Grewia flava), also known as wild raisin or brandybush, is a low growing shrubby plant with distinctive greyish green hairy leaves. From October to March it has beautiful sweet -scented star-shaped yellow flowers which make way for the berry -like fruit that is visible from December to April.
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The young male cub is now larger than his mother and should be self sufficient very soon and it was fascinating to watch the interaction between mother and son.

Having a tumble

Her tolerance of him grows shorter by the day, and after an initial friendly greeting tempers started to flair as he started throwing his superior weight around. Still, she put him in his place very quickly with a swift paw to the head!


He immediately took on a very subdued approach and as Mom calmed down he slowly tried to cosy on up to her again.
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This is a very useful plant to the Bushmen/San people who make bows from the thicker and longer pliable branches and use the thin, straight branches to make arrow shafts, walking sticks and traditional fighting sticks.

The fibres of the bark make good rope and you can even use the end of a twig to brush your teeth if you’re camping in the bush. Buck, such as kudu, steenbok and grey duiker, love feeding on the velvet raisin, as do mousebirds, grey louries, helmeted guineafowl, francolins and korhaan.
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This cute pic was taken by head field guide Jo de Wilde. Says Jo: I got this shot while looking for the meerkats. Alejandro was hot and decided to use a velvet raisin bush as an umbrella!
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