Great photo Boulder. The best one I have seen for a long time. Are they as elusive in Addo as in the Kruger?
Caracal are elusive everywhere. They are plentiful in the Eastern Cape and are dreadfully and cruelly persecuted by Stock farmers because these cats are killers deluxe. They get into a kraal at night and kill up to 40 Angora Goats and eat a bit of one. I have never seen Caracal in the Kalahari Park which is surprising as I go there often and they are most common there out of all our Parks. My first wild Caracal in Kruger was an amazing morning I spent Driving from Olifants camp down the Timbavati Road to Orpen Gate about 24 years ago. It was August and overcast and we had literally seen hundreds of steenbok on that trip. Between the Olifants bridge and the turn off to the right down the Timbavati road I saw at the side of the road (100 mtres in front) what was surely another steenbok when I only noticed it was "A lynx!!" as we drew along side It got a fright and ran back 40-50 metres and walked parallel with us for about a km!! The next animal I saw was at the first koppies on the left on the Timbavati Road where Klipspringers are often sited. It was a SERVAL!! amazing Caracal and Serval in quick succession and never again until this last trip when my wife and my one son saw what they are convinced was a Caracal Mother and young Kitten running like mad into far off bushes on the Shongololo Road when we were en route from Shingwedzi to Shimuwini. I never saw it it was so quick.
In November last year it was drizzling quite heavily as I approached the game area of Addo one Saturday morning when a scraggy looking Caracal stalked off the road as I came around the corner. I stopped where he had disappeared and there was nothing not even a russle in the grass. Then literally not more than a Km further on and now in the game area proper I picked up this beaut. I was very lucky and got about 15 pics which are even nicer than this one which was amazing considering there was no time, or so I thought at the time, to change the setting on the camera to something more appropriate. By having the engine off for my long to take shot of the kudu where I changed the settings then for the kudu and hadnt changed back...I was able to win the cats confidence as he would have bolted. He was looking intently in front of him as he slowly stalked up the little incline. I wanted to take those cruel cold eyes so softly I started to talk to her by calmly saying pet cat stuff like "kitty Kitty Ssk ssk" and she turned to peer down the 70-200 long enough for me to take 15 individual shots before she continued on her stalk into the bush.
Nigel Dennis took some brilliant Caracal pics but he told me at Nossob one night that he took those of the tame one at Augrabies in very controlled circumstances so this one although not nearly as good was probably more satisfying because it was a wild RooiKat, although it wasnt nearly as satisfying as my S114 leopard 2 weeks ago. Yves I am not aware of anybody else seeing a Caracal in Addo but obviously they have been seen and I reckon there are quite a few there as there are in all of E Cape