Tuningi Rangers Journal September 2019

By gavintonkinson on October 1, 2019

Dry, windy, dusty this is what u can expect if you come to Madikwe in September in October.

We had some amazing sightings this month and the guests enjoyed the experiences with us.

The summer is upon us and it is getting warmer and dryer and the waterholes are getting smaller as the animals are getting concentrated close to the waterholes.

The Mica pride in the south is doing very well and they gave us some memorable sightings this month. The two sub adults are growing stronger and always on the look out for prey and opportunities to hunt to impress the rest of the females in the pride.

The 2-male coalition Kwandwe and Monomoholo are regulars now in the South and they successfully took over the Mica pride. They are definitely the strongest coalition in Madikwe and most successful.

They are sharing feasts and mating with the Females

In the morning we are always out and about looking for fresh tracks. There is nothing more thrilling for a guide to see fresh tracks, especially lion tracks. It gets our blood pumping as guides and it’s a wonderful experience for the guest to see how we track, and doing what we do best. For us at Tuningi we take our tracking and finding animals very seriously.

Munye our resident male has been seen regularly this month and gave us real good show with plenty of good sightings. He is covering a huge area recently, hunting, patrolling and searching for females to mate with. He is really our golden Boy.

It’s always so wonderful and rewarding to see the expression on the guest’s faces the first time they see a Leopard. The holy grail of the big 5.

I am very proud to say that the new female cheetah is doing very well and looking better than ever. Looks like she loves the southern part of Madikwe where she has been seen many times.

She is a really good hunter and very successful, she is going to be a really good mother for her cubs. Imagine a cheetah female with cubs in Madikwe just wow can’t wait for that moment.

For the last couple of weeks, the 2 male cheetahs are patrolling and hunting very successfully here in the south and that’s a really good thing for us. The one reason may be …. Hint, hint …. yes you are right all to do with the female cheetah. These two boys just love termite mounts and using it for look out points for prey and scanning the horizon.

The pack of Wild dogs have not been seen for a couple of weeks because they are busy denning on the Tswene Tswene mountain exactly in middle part of madikwe. This is a very exited time for us and we can’t wait to see how many pups there are in the pack. Looking forward for our new pack that will be arriving end of December and hopefully bringing lots more Wild dog sightings.

We are so privileged to have a very active hyena den so close to our lodge. This clan of hyenas consist of 4 generations of young cubs and adults close to 6 individuals. Hyenas are always popular with guests just because they are such interesting animals. Hyenas got a very bad publicity because of the lion king that will stick with them for ever. Hyenas are very good hunters, better than lions, and are actuality ruled by a Queen with an iron throne in a matriarchal society. The females are much bigger than the males.

World Rhino day on 22 September celebrates all 5 species of rhino: Black, White, greater one horned, Sumatran and Javan rhinos. In Madikwe we have the black rhino and the white Rhino. The black rhino being the most elusive of them. Great effort goes in to keep them safe in madfikwe and Africa. They can live up to 45 years old and a white rhino can reach up to 2 tons and black rhino 1.4 tons. These animals are truly an African giant and iconic species of Africa.

The general game is not doing too bad either, considering how dry it is. The animals affected the most will be the browsers first because of the lack of leaves, especially the kudus. I can’t wait to see a beautiful kudu male browsing on succulent green leaves, and see madikwe green again. Let’s hope the rains are not far that madikwe the jewel of South Africa can transform again to the green Marico bushveld that we all love.

Thats all for this month Folks,


Andre and the T-Team


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