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While I had always said that this troubled pride of lions was doomed and would cease to exist by the end of 2009, I never really believed it would happen. After my last report on the Ingwelala website, things were going alright for the pride, but as usual, they hit a few stumbling blocks and ended up becoming separated and spread all over the reserve. They were making ends meet, but only just.
Reflecting back over the year 2009 marked an interesting year in the life of Ingwelala.
Much was achieved in the field:
It all began round 12h00 today. Bungalow #200 radioed to say the river is coming down.
We watched as it made its way to the causeway. No telling how long it will take to subside. Here are some photos, more in the latest photo gallery.
Ingwelala is truly a “leopard place” and we have many leopard tales from “Ingwe” to prove this, but this story is probably the best of them all. It is the famous, and often wrongly-told story of one “old-timer” who was attacked in the camp and lived to tell the tale. The story is about Oom Wolfie from bungalow 198. It's an amazing tale, and it is true, nogal!
I am starting to get really depressed about continuously sending you bad news about this pride. The last update had no sooner been posted on the Ingwelala website when Mother Nature scripted the next tragic installment of this pride’s real-life soap opera.
How many people think to shine their torch carefully at the tower before going up at night, especially after a glass or two of good red wine???
Firstly, the young male that I thought might have died, did not (which was great news), but instead seemed to be recovering slightly, and was moving with his brothers and sisters as the five sub adult lions started to see some hunting success.
Firstly, the pride is known as the Sohebele Pride, after the Sohebele River that runs through the Timbavati and confluences with the Nhlarulumi River in the middle of camp. The pride comprises of seven lions; two adult females, four sub-adults aged 32-months and one sub-adult female aged 25-months.
Elephants are to be culled in national parks in the near future.
This will be done as part of a controlled experimental programme undertaken by South Africa National Parks (SANParks) to determine the effects of culling, contraception and range expansion on social behaviour and the meta-population.