In life there are so many situations that may be defined as mundane, they happen once, twice, one hundred times. Even some beautiful sights like a picture can be viewed over and over. A discovery is a moment that will never happen again. You are the privileged individuals to see that once in an eternity event. Selinda Camp is a place of discoveries - you don’t even have to open your mind to it as it will develop in front of you. You may think the days of discovery are over, Livingstone, Stanley and Baines had the day – not true, we truly discover new sights every day!
Camp guide Mots was driving with four lucky guests in the southern part of the concession one early morning. Quite close to the airstrip they heard a mellow calling from a lion. It is hard to describe such a call but it is almost an anguished resonance. The mother as it turns out was calling for her two newly-born cubs. We estimated that they were maybe one week old as one of the cubs' eyes were just opening. The lioness had placed them in an acacia bush to keep them hidden and protected as they are extremely vulnerable. Mots gave the guests a few minutes with the cubs before retreating. Such a sighting is so sensitive because our presence can attract the danger of other predators particularly hyaena. Mots reported the sighting immediately so the concession manager could put in place our sensitive sighting policy. This would mean only one vehicle could visit the cubs at any one time and only two throughout the day. We will give you further updates about the cubs over the coming months.
Elephant sightings have been really good this month, as large numbers have been visiting the channel in front of camp – quite often their timing would be impeccable as they would arrive around 15.30, coincidently the same time our guests would arrive for high tea.
Towards the end of the month, we found a female leopard that often hangs around the camp area. She was sitting in a tree with an impala carcass which she had scavenged from a lone hyaena. Once the leopard had secured the carcass in the tree, she spent a few moments observing her surroundings. Suddenly a smaller leopard emerged from the densest part of the tree canopy. It was the adult leopard’s daughter. We were very pleased to see the sub-adult is still doing well as we had not seen her for a couple weeks and we starting to think the worst. The duo has been seen a number of times close to camp and are very relaxed in the presence of the vehicles, so hopefully they will stick around and continue to provide us with outstanding sightings.
Hyaena have been spotted regularly. On one occasion we found nine hyaena feeding on a baby giraffe carcass. We have also been lucky to witness hyaena hunting – proving that they are not solely scavengers.
The resident wild dogs have been doing well and are frequently seen relaxing around the Mara Pools area in between hunts.
Guests have been lucky enough to see them hunting and playing almost every day while they stay in the region. More hunts which haven’t been particularly successful include the lions that have tried their luck at digging out warthogs from their burrows but it has just left them all hot and frustrated from what we saw. In relation, lions have a hunting success rate of 30% as opposed to the 90% of wild dog, which are clearly effective hunters. The denning season for the wild dog will start soon. This month we have seen both the Explorer Pack and Selinda Pack as they haven’t started to den yet.