Rounding off the year
“It has been a turbulent year for everyone, and it has been no exception for us out here in the Bush. The closure of the Lodge at the end of March saw us sending all our Staff home to be with their Families and retaining a ‘skeleton crew’ of 12 of us on site for the duration. These were surreal times, as we maintained, patrolled, and secured the Facility, waiting for the opportunity to re-open.
At the end of August this opportunity presented itself, and we leapt at the challenges of getting the Lodge back up and running. It was an emotional re-opening meeting our Leopard Hills Family again after the months of closure and giving Leopard Hills the heartbeat and soul that had laid dormant since March.
We have been blessed to welcome Guests again, and we look forward to welcoming all of you again soon. As the year draws to an end, may we take this opportunity to wish you and all you Families and Merry Christmas, and a safe, happy and blessed year ahead.” – Wishes by Duncan and Louise Rodgers.
The lion dynamics in the west have shifted radically again, especially towards the end of the year. We had glimpses of the Styx pride in the beginning of the year. The Mhangene females were reported to have cubs and we eventually got a glimpse of the little ones. The Tumbela brothers sneaked in through the cracks and are quickly establishing themselves as the dominant males in the area. The Othawa pride has had to adjust with the introduction of the new brothers. Some of the pride members are still walking circles around the Tumbela brothers.
Leopard activity has been as fantastic as ever. We have seen a couple of young males starting to enter the area searching for their own slice of heaven. Some of the resident females are pushing out of their usual territories to mate with other males.
We have certainly seen an influx of elephants as the necessary rains have fallen during the summer season. Some magnificent bulls are parading the grasslands and herds can be seeing guiding their newborns around the vast landscape.
We still boast a very healthy population of general game scattered around the open plains, river systems and bushveld thickets. With the delivery of good seasonal rains and a flush of greenery many babies can be seen sticking close by to their mothers.
This has certainly been another stellar birding year in the area. It is well worth taking note of the birds while en route to some of the larger animal sightings or while lounging around on the deck of your private suite.