While we’re not digging out the woolly jumpers and scarves just yet, winter is definitely on the way. After a blisteringly hot and humid summer and rainy season the mornings now have a very definite bite in the air. And so on the morning of the 3rd as we made our way into the release site, with cool temperatures and a chilly wind following us in; it seemed like the perfect morning for a bit of activity from the pride… They had other ideas however when we located them between Sibaka and Chobe. You would have thought we were back in mid-summer with the day’s highlight coming when Rusha moved from one bush to the shade of another. Still, knowing how well they can hide themselves in this site, it’s a relief just to be able to see them at all.
This morning (4th) we found them having recently fed and relaxing on the border of the Acacia boundary. Fifteen minutes or so after we arrived Temi leapt to her feet scanned the area to the South and began making her way in the direction of Waterpan 1. The rest of the pride seemed conflicted as to whether or not to follow but eventually decided against it. That was until a further 15 minutes later when Kwandi rose and moved off in roughly the same direction, Zulu following first and then one by one everyone else. We caught up with them again close to the edge of pan 1, but Temi was nowhere to be seen and her signal was incredibly weak by this point.
Zulu & Kwandi
As everyone settled back down in the shade, we checked Temi’s signal at regular intervals and after 20 minutes it started to grow stronger until she must have been within 100 metres of our location. Due to the height of the grass it wasn’t for a further several minutes that we eventually spotted her as she walked past us and the rest of the pride – about 15m away, completely oblivious to their location. She probably would have kept going to their former location if the rustling grass hadn’t woken Kwandi who walked a couple of paces after her. This in turn alerted Temi to the group and as everyone then jumped to their feet an orgy of social interactions ensued.
Rusha & Temi