Lodge Under Siege

Posted on April 11, 2010

In the early hours of this morning we got a call from Marius and Vanessa to say the Hlaba Nkuzi Female Leopard was on the roof of their house.

Louise and I made our way tentatively from our house, through the garden, trying to see which way she had gone.

The cubs were playing on the Verandah of Vanessa and Marius’s house, having a wonderful time while their mother paced up and down on the roof, quite a daunting experience for the occupants who had woken to hear the sound of footsteps padding up and down just a few meters above their heads.

We watched as the mother moved down onto the verandah where she had stashed the cubs nearby in the bushes, and proceeded to hunt a male impala who was completely oblivious to her presence and sauntered past. Being in the security of the building, we had a grandstand view of her, not even a meter in front of us through the window, as she got ready for her stalk.

The impala, sensing something was not right, made off into the bush, and the Leopard decided not to follow in pursuit, rather to spend the rest of the night in and about our communal garden, giving most of the residence a sleepless night.

0 thoughts on “Lodge Under Siege

  1. What a experience that would be thanks so much for sharing. She is beautiful great catch of her posing on the roof.

  2. What a experience that would be thanks so much for sharing. She is beautiful great catch of her posing on the roof.

  3. Well she never ceases to amaze me! Marius and Vanessa you make sure you take good care of Mother and the little ones now! Get Chef to organise a nice couple of bush buck / impala each night for dinner (and of course Marius – hide the dogs!). Keep us posted as I reckon she intends to hang around for awhile – P.S. tell the lovely lady that she could have waited to do this a week ago while I was there!

  4. OMG! First u have a "bad hair day" with the cubs thanks to Dunx. Now u have cats on the roof. Never a dull moment, eh. Hope to see them and u in August too. Joy

  5. I commented to Gareth a few weeks ago, that I believe Hlaba Nkunzi will become a legend in the Sabi Sands, just like Makwela, and that she will leave you all with some very memorable moments. When I was just over 2m away from her, and she looked almost straight through me, I sensed her ease of being in close proximity to humans. I think this is due to all of you at Leopard Hills that maintain a non invasive approach on the cubs around camp, and in doing so, animals such as Hlaba Nkunzi do not feel threatened by us, but see Leopard Hills as just another nurturing sanctuary.
    Duncan, I do believe this viewing is the fruit of professional staff and management, and am pleased you had this experience.
    I will be glued to the blog in the upcoming weeks.

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