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Wildlife in Camps

Discuss and find information on the Kruger National Park
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Imberbe
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Imberbe » Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:50 pm

Hi Nimrod.

There is a few cases of especially leopard entering camps, most often via the tree route. These are some of the most dangerous situations you can have, since the situation can easily turn in to a tragedy.

But I must stress that this is an absolute exception, to the point where it always causes great uproar when it happens. This is also dealt with immediately in the most appropriate way for the specific situation. It is not left to sort itself out or accepted as being part of the nature experience.

Last year a leopard had to be shot in Tamboti camp, precisely in such a situation.

I have seen, and un-knowingly donated some meat to, a badger in Maroela camp. :roll:
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Imberbe
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Imberbe » Wed Mar 17, 2010 11:27 pm

With a leopard you do the following, and in this specific sequence:

1. Pray
2. Avoid eye contact at all cost. This is seen as aggression.
3. If there is a chance that he thinks that you haven't seen him, just continue moving as if you haven't seen him, and move away from him.
4. If there is a direct confrontation, avoid eye contact and slowly back of, while still facing him.
5. If worst come to worst, fall to the ground rolling in to a ball and cover your head and neck with your arms, and your stomach with your legs. Lie still.
6. Pray

Eich ... :doh:
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by wacktazz » Thu Mar 18, 2010 8:38 am

On a serious note, I have seen, with my own eyes, a Leopard in Skukuza in 2001, and on two occasions in PK.
The rule is that they are more scared of us than we of them. And that's a fact.
Otherwise I would not be sitting here typing this.
The one in Skz was about 30 metres or less from me, and we looked each other in the eyes....
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by angiek » Thu Mar 18, 2010 8:42 am

Luckily never seen cats in camp, but few years ago while going out for the early morning drive we came across a hyena in Satara

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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Bushmom » Thu Mar 18, 2010 10:17 am

Seen lion twice in Skukuza, but that was in the seventies. Hyenas were actually common in camps at one stage. Saw one in Skukuza about three years ago. Leopard spoor in Lower Sabie. Honey Badger in Skukuza.
Although Skukuza is not my favourite camp, we have had awesome in-camp sightings there through the years.
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Rooies » Thu Mar 18, 2010 10:31 am

A leopard, or or for that matter any other cat, will back off if it hears or sees you first. If you surprise or corner a leopard it will attack. A golden rule that I follow is to make a noise when approaching a hide or any place where there are no other people around, and where a leopard may be lurking. Let the leopard know that you are coming and it will back off.
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Duke Ellieton » Thu Mar 18, 2010 10:32 am

I don't know if they are more scared of us than we of them. In December we stayed for 3 nights at Grootkolk in the KTP.
This is an unfenced camp and we had leopard walk pass our chalet on 3 occasions barely a few meters away.
They were not the least bit interested in us and merely going to the waterhole for a drink.

I do think that most animals have a healthy respect for humans and on the game walks we did in KNP the lions we came across usually retreated as soon as they became aware of our presence.
The situation could be different if they felt threatened or had cubs

Methinks that at night it could be a different story or even if the leopard was injured and therefore handicapped with respect to hunting.
Remember a leopard attacking a guide on the Matjulu bridge a few years ago.
They were on a night drive and the guide thought it was a good idea to sit on the bridge for a smoke break :doh: :wall:

Did not feel scared at the time of seeing those leopards at Grootkolk but when you think about it afterwards you realise what a dangerous situation it could be.

On the dassie trail in the Augrabies we came across leopard spoor........you would not have a chance if a leopard decided to attack you on this trail.

Best chance to see a leopard form your patio - go to Grootkolk. We have also on 2 occasions seen lion on the other side of the fence at Biyamiti.

Early one morning saw a dead bushbuck in the toilet entrance in Nkulu picnic site :shock: - the attendant told us a leopard was dragging it to the toilet and was disturbed when he arrived at the picnic site.

In December 2010, we found a lioness and cubs in the toilet at Dikbaardskolk picnic site in the KTP. I did post pix of this in the arid parks forum
Last edited by Duke Ellieton on Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by ndloti » Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:18 am

The trailists at Metsi Metsi trail were treated to a lioness in the camp at lunch time,
A year or so ago a non active member of this forums close relative saw a leopard inside Skukuza late one night .
KNP is sacred. I am opposed to the modernisation of Kruger and from the depths of my soul long for the Kruger of yesteryear! 1000+km on foot in KNP incl 56 wild trails.200+ nights in the wildernessndloti-indigenous name for serval.

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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by WillBen » Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:48 am

About 4 years ago (I think) we were visited by a hyena at LS. She came in the middle of the night and bit chunks out of our dustbin on our stoep (porch). She made so much noise that she woke us up, my SO was :pray: that it wasn't a leopard or baboon as we were in one of the luxury tents and we had left the bathroom flaps open :wall: .

We told the receptionists the next morning and they were pretty blase about the whole thing and said they called her "Spotty". I thought it was pretty ironic though that they had "Beware the Baboons" signs all over the place when there was a hyena running around at night!

:shock:

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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Wild Dreamer » Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:52 am

Eagle Owl! :lol:
Remember the civet paw marks next to your tent at Letaba last December? How excited we all were?

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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Flaxy » Thu Mar 18, 2010 1:28 pm

I've not seen big cats in camp, seen Civet at Tamboti on the deck of our tent, and last year on my bush walk we saw cheetah about 10metres away. It was amazing and I did not even think of any danger at the time, however the guide said that in all his 10 years of bush walks this was the first time he had seen cheetah - and he went for his rifle about 4 times!

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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by onewithnature » Thu Mar 18, 2010 2:53 pm

Luckily (unluckily :hmz: :hmz: ) I have never seen large cats in a camp. Neither snakes. Civet, Porcupine, and African Wild Cat, yes.
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by okie » Fri Mar 19, 2010 8:50 am

When we were at Punda Maria last October , just outside the camp , a badly wounded buffalo got away from hunting lions , and ran right into the camp . The buffalo had to be shot by the rangers . It cause quite a lot of excitement inside the camp ( the gate guard ran away ) , but just imagine what could have happened if the lions had persued and then caught the buffalo inside the camp!
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by Malealea » Sat Mar 20, 2010 7:19 pm

I heard some stories of Leopards entering Shingwedzi Camp. but this Story is years back.
But even so the Camp is fenced, there is always animals around.
I have seen in various camps, Hyenas, Jackals, AWC, Genets,Snakes, BFC (But I'm not sure.... . It was to quick(not in KNP)). You can always can see mammals from the camp like Monkeys, Baboons, Antelopes. the probability is always there!
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onewithnature
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Re: Cats inside camps???

Unread post by onewithnature » Sun Mar 21, 2010 4:57 am

Anyone know whether it is okay to walk around at night in camps?
I would suppose it is recommended that people stay in their huts and tents as much as possible, especially as wild animals do get in.
However, sometimes one has to attend ablutions at night, and camps like Tamboti require one to walk through close bush to reach them.
At night, I have found it both hectically exciting, and a tad nerve-racking!
However, I must admit that I love walking around camps in the night if I cannot sleep, a good torch in one hand, a camera around my neck, socks and shoes on my feet, and a slow tread to make sure I don't stand on anything.
Nothing better for me than finding a bench and listening to the sounds around.
Cannot compare, in my opinion, with anything else in this world!
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