Tuningi Newsletter April 2014

By Tuningi Safari Lodge on May 6, 2014

Hallo once again!

Another month has passed with a whole lot of excitement that went with it.  The bush still looks great after the good summer rain we had.  It was not the best of time with lots of leaves and tall grass to spot animals but we still managed to get some spectacular sightings.

The Ellies are back1

Since we’ve had rain, water stood all over the park but still the best spot was Tlou dam.  It didn’t matter if there were animals or not, it delivered an amazing scene.  It was also the past month that the elephants returned to the west of Madikwe.

Stunning Dam

It’s always a treat to see big herds of elephants at the dam after a hot day to quench their thirsts.

The lions on our side of the park didn’t make it easy for us to find at times but when we did after a long search it was very rewarding.


We found the pride of the south, the Bulayas on a wildebeest kill one morning quite late.  This particular morning we all drove past them earlier on because we had mist so thick we couldn’t  see 10 meters in front of us.  At this sighting there were also great interaction between Jackals, Hyenas and the lions.  The younger lions, about a year old, were very protective over the food their mothers provided and made sure the hyena clan didn’t come close.  Only the next morning when the lions were gone, the scavengers had a feast.

Take-away ribs

Our southern pack of wild dogs also led us all over with their quick and sometimes strange movement making it difficult to locate.  The temperatures have dropped considerably over the past couple of weeks so the dogs started moving much earlier than usual making it more difficult to keep track of them.  So much so that they again came to the lodge and made a kill while we were out on drive looking for them.  Thankfully we were close to still enjoy them the rest of the morning around the lodge.

Tuningi Dog

It wasn’t always the big and rare things that made my guests and me excited.

Snake Kill3

One of the most exciting sightings I had this month was a Boomslang killing a chameleon.  Mostly these killings go unseen but this happened on the road in front of me.

Firstly I only noticed the snake since I do not like them very much.  Then only we saw the target.  They both moved on and off the road a few times but the last time the chameleon appeared it was in a bad way.  The snake bit it some time in the chase and waited for its Hemotoxic poison to take effect.

Snake Kill4

Snake Kill5

We were very lucky to have a sighting like that.

On some of our quieter morning drives, the thick mist made it difficult to spot things.  What was not difficult to spot was thousands of spider webs.  They were all over. On the ground, in the trees everywhere quite pretty really or it depends who you are asking.

Wet Web

The Cheetahs on the other hand, everyone enjoy.  It is not too often we can keep track of the four cheetah males as they move through Madikwe like they did the past couple of weeks.  From east to west and north to south they were found almost everyday teaching us a little more about their movements.


Although we are taught huge lessons about the animals’ movement every day it is still not guaranteed that we will find them again where we last left them. This of course keeps our jobs exciting and hugely interesting.

Until we see you back here again!

Kindest regards

Cornelius and the T-team