A warm hello to all my fans…..
I have not posted any material to my page for a very long time, which i must add has not been for a lack of enthusiasm, but rather a lack of amazing sightings that have been on offer here in Madikwe.
However…… This morning the bush “Gods” blessed us with one of the most epic sightings/experiences that you could probably see out here in the savannahs of Africa.
So…. Without any further procrastination, this is what unfolded on this mornings safari…….
It was rather chilly this morning as we enjoyed the comfort of some freshly pressed coffee at the lodge before leaving all tucked up in some heavy jackets, beanies, scarves etc, and not long after leaving the lodge we located on some fresh leopard tracks going east, and after a short tracking session we came up fruitless. It was not long after that, when Cornelius told me over the radio that he had some fresh lion tracks also heading east, and so i went to join him in the endeavour to find the king of the jungle.
After a search which lasted about an hour we were getting more and more despondent, as the tracks were not looking so fresh, and we knew we were quite far behind the lions, and we would have to get a move on to locate them.
As I was looking down on to the dusty road at some lions tracks, something told me to reverse and have a look to the southern side of the road, which i did, but only to see a tree stump looking like a lion sitting in a rather barren area, so I ignored it and continued looking at the lion tracks on the road. This is when one of my guests said in a subdued and rather relaxed manner ” Gavin…. I think there is a leopard over there…”
I immediately reversed back a few meters and much to my amazement saw this male leopard just sitting there… !!
On approach to him, he seemed extremely relaxed and had not got a care in the world for the vehicle which by Madikwe standards is very rare to say the least. Anyway, as we settled in to capture some photos of him sitting in some glorious morning light, he suddenly disappeared into a hole beside him, and then i started putting two and two together, and knew he was up to something like digging a warthog out, which they often can do.
So after enjoying the rather funny views of him popping his head out of the hole every so often, it went quiet…. 5 mins later a porcupine emerges from the dusty hole !!!
Yes… A PORCUPINE !!
I have not seen one for a very long time, never mind the possibility of a leopard and a porcupine in one shot !! So what followed was that the porcupine hobbled away from the hole with what looked like a serious injury to itself on the hind leg, and soon after the leopard also popped out of the hole looking rather dazed. After a few seconds the leopard turned around to see the porcupine heading for some cover,and followed , but not before struggling to remove a quill which had lodged itself in his mouth, but once that was removed the instinctive kill mode kicked in, and in a flash he had the porcupine by the throat.
With a very chuffed look on his face, he proceeded to asphyxiate the largest rodent in Africa, and then when he felt the life of his breakfast all but gone, he dragged the porcupine for a few hundred meters into a very thick bush where he settled down to enjoy his hard earned prize!!
We then left him to enjoy his meal, and looked for a spot to enjoy a nice warm cup of hot chocolate and coffee to reminisce with our guests about what they have just experienced.
SO…. ALWAYS EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED IN THE BUSH !!!
Until next time….
Ps… Please scroll below to see the sequence of images i managed to capture of this amazing scene.