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Amazing things seen from/within Camp fences

Discuss the different camps and roads of the Kruger National Park
Leon
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Action in Skukuza

Unread postby Leon » Tue Jan 11, 2005 8:06 pm

Hi there :roll:

I would like to share the action i had on the night of 6 Jan 2005 at about 23h15 in the caravan park at Skukuza. I had a visit right at my door from a adult hyena. My son went for a walk and when he wanted to enter the caravan he saw the hyena. He rushed to the toilets from where he then phoned me. Lucky as i put the outside light on the hyena ran away. I took this all on video and reported it to the gate gaurd. Some of the people visiting the park said they saw two hyenas that night.
The big question is will a hyena attact a human?

Thanks Leon

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Guinea Pig
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Unread postby Guinea Pig » Tue Jan 11, 2005 8:57 pm

When we camped at Skukuza in September we were very rudely wakened by a hyena's cry. I was scared out of my wits, I automatically went for the side of the tent I thought the sound had come from which was definitely not OUTSIDE the fence. This meant I ended up on my husband who calmly informed me the door of the tent was on the other side! :D When we related the events to other campers, we were told not to take this too lightly as hyenas have been found inside Skukuza before. We were also told not to wander around Letaba at night as a female leopard had been removed from the camp on occasion. We assumed these were both Urban Legends.
Needless to say, I REFUSE to go to the ablution blocks alone late at night.
Has this happened before?

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craigsa
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Lovely hyaena

Unread postby craigsa » Tue Jan 11, 2005 9:35 pm

We had just returned from a night drive at Satara and were sitting around camp and next minute we a saw a hyaena walking along the road, i could not believe my eyes.
Reported to the guard, but thought afterwards i dont think it would of attacked any adult but was worried for the children.
Oh well atleast got a good sighting.
Craig
Planning next KNP trip!

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wildtuinman
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Action

Unread postby wildtuinman » Wed Jan 12, 2005 6:17 am

To be quite honest, it does happen that animals enter the camps. I have experienced some action myself at Lower Sabie in 2000 when a lioness came into the camp area during the night and ate from dustbins etc. She was trapped inside the camp which caused a very dangerous situation. She also injured herself from jumping into the fence as she tried to get out. A vet was summoned and she was darted about 6:30 am. We video'd the whole scene.

I have also read of a leopard biting a foreign tourist on the head while he was sleeping outside his tent at Berg-en-Dal and of a man that got pulled from his tent by an hyaena at Satara.

Although mainly scavengers, hyaenas are very capable hunters, more so than lions. I am sure that they will take on a grown man while sleeping but children could be in real danger.

Always use a flashlight when walking at night, not only for the unlikely event of meeting a leopard or hyaena but even more for snakes. Night adders and puffadders are probably the biggest threat of all night visitor encounters.

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wildtuinman
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Action

Unread postby wildtuinman » Wed Jan 12, 2005 6:52 am

I also just remembered reading about a leopard attacking a worker, a ranger (think it was Johann Oelofse) and his assistant in broad daylight in the Mopani tourist camp a number of years ago. After the leopard was shot and killed it was examined and proved to be in prime condition.

The ranger remarked that only a very strong man would survive an attack like that without help from someone else.

Also don't forget about the two people that got killed on separate occasions in the staff village of Skukuza and the gate guard at Shingwedzi whom got killed and partially eaten by a leopard right inside his room.

Leopards are unbelievably opportunistic!

We are entering their domain, and when leopards, hyeanas and lions become hungry enough or unable to catch their normal prey because of old age or injury, they then might enter otherwise animal free areas to search for food. Lions etc do actually visit towns bordering the Kruger like Phalaborwa. But the chances are very slim that you'll encounter something during your stay.
Last edited by wildtuinman on Wed Jan 12, 2005 12:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Wild@Heart
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Unread postby Wild@Heart » Wed Jan 12, 2005 1:28 pm

Most of the animals do enter via the staff entrance. I remember with one of our nightdrives the driver took a short cut back to camp through the staff entrance. No gates or anything right into the camp.

I also agree, Hyena's should not attack any adult (unless they feel threatened), but children are in very dangerous positions should they meet them face to face. As for Lion, Leopard...I'll rather not take my chances.
Last edited by Wild@Heart on Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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ruud
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Unread postby ruud » Mon Jan 31, 2005 9:53 pm

LAst time in Kruger we slept in a riverside bungalow and my wife woke up in the middle of the night and heard something outside. Right before our door stood a big hyena and he was eating something.
In Botswana a young boy was attacked by a hyena and pulled out his tent....
So yes, it can be very dangerous

Ruud

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Unread postby Twiga » Mon Jan 31, 2005 10:34 pm

Herman wrote:Now for a somewhat less scary camp animal. Everybody who's been to Letaba or the Timbavati picnic spot will know this animal- bushbuck.
This one's been around at Timbavati for years and is probably more tolerant of tourists than those in Letaba. Sadly she's an incurable beggar now, but quite harmless I think.



I enjoyed the bushbuck at Letaba. One was after some bread that I was eating and started headbutting me! :lol:
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Wild@Heart
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Unread postby Wild@Heart » Tue Feb 01, 2005 8:07 am

GP what you said is so true. Happened with me in Augrabies, a Springbuck was also in the camp and people kept feeding him.

He refused to leave me when I did not want to feed him and kept hasseling till he got bored I assumed, and went to hassle other people.
NO TO HOTEL DEVELOPMENT IN KRUGER

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Interesting sighting INSIDE the fence

Unread postby Isabel » Thu Feb 17, 2005 2:14 pm

On our trip to Kruger in Feb, we stayed in the tents in Lower Sabie. After dinner we all went back to our tents, leaving the leftover meat on the counter. Mom woke up about an hour later, heard something and sent my dad to investigate, thinking it was a mongoose. Dad opened the door, heard some scrambling and when he got outside a hyena was standing just off the stoep. :shock: He stood there watching them for a bit and then wandered off. We reported a 'lost' hyena to the camp officials the next day, they found it hillarious and said they will investigate.

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Unread postby DinkyBird » Thu Feb 17, 2005 2:25 pm

You'd think that it would be awfully difficult for them to sneak into the camps as there are always people coming and going? They surely come in during the day as the gates are closed at night?

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Unread postby Guinea Pig » Thu Feb 17, 2005 2:29 pm

Mmm ..... DinkyBird, maybe I shouldn't tell you. :shock:
At Skukuza we took the campsite right in the corner on your right in January. The kids found a hole at the bottom of the fence big enough for a rather large dog to crawl through :!:
On a quest to visit 9 new National Parks in October. :dance:

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Unread postby Isabel » Thu Feb 17, 2005 2:29 pm

Maybe, but we spotted some digging around the fences, and saw a cage, presumable to catch these animals. After reading all the other stories, i will be much more careful about walking around on my own at night. I keep forgetting that in the park, we are the ones 'trespassing'. Even if we are inside the fences.

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Unread postby DinkyBird » Thu Feb 17, 2005 2:41 pm

Of course yes, GP - warthogs are notorious for digging under the fences so I suppose it is an endless battle!

When we spent a few nights at Shimuwini a few years ago, a large ellie bull had broken the elephant proof fence down twice to get inside the camp and enjoy the green foliage. We woke during the night with him right outside out bungalow feeding. Seeing the huge gaps in the fence then made us very cautious about going around the camp after dark so I suppose we should not assume that smaller holes cannot be made too!

A line from Kobie Kruger's book comes to me (and I might not be quoting it verbatim)....when the sun sets it is time for all primates to be safely up their trees!

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Unread postby arks » Mon Apr 04, 2005 12:36 am

Guinea Pig wrote:Basically it comes down to one thing - it stays a wild animal, which makes it even worse, it associates you with food, not as a playmate! I took that pic of the Bushbuck, but was EXTREMELY wary. It was all done in slow motion. When we refused to feed her she lost interest and went of to hassle some other visitors.


If this is not the same bushbuck I saw being fed at Timbavati, then it's another. I spoke to the people who were feeding it, pointing out that they should not, but they were extremely annoyed that an American should be telling them what to do in their country - told me off and ignored me. And of course the two men selling cool drinks had no authority to do anything.

I find this sort of behaviour upsetting and did report it, but doubt it does much good - until something more dangerous than the bushbuck causes a serious "accident" perhaps?

cheers, arks


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