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Marakele: ANIMALS

Golden Gate, Mapungubwe, Marakele
meleney
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Re: Marakele: ANIMALS

Unread post by meleney » Thu Sep 22, 2011 11:54 am

Marakele's Bontle is our favourite Sanparks campsite and we have spent a great weekend at Tlopi Tented camp as well. The reason for Bontle is that there is no fence between the camp and the veld and we have had rhino join us for a braai there! Also visited at night and grazed 60 cm away (yes centimeters) from our heads. We had our tent flaps open due to the heat and only had the gauze between his very huge head and our own heads. My favourite morning activity is sitting on a week-day on a camping chair with a coffee in hand, watching game grazing a few meters away and thinking about everyone else in the traffic between Pretoria and Johannesburg!!

HOWEVER - never seen lion. Dont really believe there are any. To be quite honest. Has anyone ever seen lion there and when was the last sighting?

Secondly the vultures... where are they? We drive up that mountain faithfully every time and on top you get to a tower, but no directions or signs to the where-abouts of a vulture feeding spot etc. I somehow thought there was a specific vulture kitchen!! Thus... also never seen vultures.

By the way, my description of a romantic getaway at the Tlopi Camp won me a weekend at Agulhus National Park through Wild Card this year. So all in all - lion and vultures aside, Marakele is wonderful!!!!!!

meleney
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Re: Marakele: ANIMALS

Unread post by meleney » Sun Sep 25, 2011 5:49 pm

This is what I wrote: (it had to be 100 words!)

The unmistakable cracking of dry twigs, the deep murmur of a bull; I can hardly contain my excitement as the bush around our tent comes alive with elephant sounds. Dragging the sheet with me, I tip-toe onto the deck as they emerge from the dense bush.

I’m at Marakele’s unfenced, undiscovered Tlopi Camp with the love of my life, my best friend and cohort in romantic escapades.

Strong arms encircle me. We’re watching and listening to morning birdsong. I turn into the embrace. His eyebrows lift in invitation and I decide: “We’ll catch the elephants when they come back this evening”.

:wink:

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JenB
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Re: Marakele: ANIMALS

Unread post by JenB » Sun Sep 25, 2011 8:25 pm

meleney 8)

I agree with you, Bontle is also my favorite SANParks camping site! :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:
meleney wrote:HOWEVER - never seen lion. Dont really believe there are any. To be quite honest. Has anyone ever seen lion there and when was the last sighting?

When we were camping in Bontle in May, the lions were very vocal. They were somewhere on the other side of the tunnel. I'm sure if we left very early the next morning we might have found them but then again the morning birding in Bontle is so good and watching all the game come down to drink, absolute tranquility. :)

meleney wrote:Secondly the vultures... where are they? We drive up that mountain faithfully every time and on top you get to a tower, but no directions or signs to the where-abouts of a vulture feeding spot etc. I somehow thought there was a specific vulture kitchen!! Thus... also never seen vultures.

There is no vulture kitchen. If you go up to the mountain early in the morning, you will see many of them circling up. The only breeding site is on the other side of the mountain, on the cliffs behind the tower. Unfortunately you can only see the site from outside Marakele.

If you drive past the entrance gate, the road turns to gravel and up the hill. It's quite a scenic drive. When you reach the top, you'll be driving next to the fence on your left. If you carefully scan the cliffs, you'll see the white markings of the nesting site. We've had better views of the vultures from the top of the mountain tho. :wink:
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." ~ Anatole France

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JenB
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Re: Marakele: ANIMALS

Unread post by JenB » Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:16 am

Image

8)
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." ~ Anatole France

fralanti
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Wounded rhino at Marakele??

Unread post by fralanti » Sun Feb 19, 2012 7:03 pm

On 17 February 2012 we saw this rhino cow at Marakele at the Bontle camp. She had a wound (gunshot?) on her left side.

Image

Image

Image

We reported it to the personnel, but they did not seem too worried. I hope they are going to investigate and report it as they promised, because to me it looked like a gunshot wound and still fresh. Maybe it was another poaching attempt?

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Re: Wounded rhino at Marakele??

Unread post by Bushmom » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:47 pm

The rhino on this specific photo seems to be a white rhino(hump, ears , grazing) and according to Imberbe on the other thread, the parasite only attacks black rhino.
I think a rhino would scratch any open wound to try and get rid of the irritation.
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Imberbe
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Re: Wounded rhino at Marakele??

Unread post by Imberbe » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:19 pm

This does seem to be a wound caused by some external factor, rather than the parasites. And yes, this is a white rhino which is not targeted by the parasite.

I cannot comment with any certainty on the question whether this was caused by a bullet. If it was a bullet it would have had to be a very small calibre as a bullet of any considerable calibre hitting the rhino at that spot would have caused serious injury.

The hole however looks large, which is strange for an entry wound of a bullet, except if it had festered.

It was quite possibly an injury by another rhino's horn, a stick or something similar. I would think is is probably related to the mark on the body as it is right in line. Probably a major injury of which a part has festered and are being kept open by rubbing or indeed possibly by ox peckers.

Just speculating ... :wink:
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Re: Wounded rhino at Marakele??

Unread post by AjayB » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:40 pm

Thx Imberbe -- I have seen how oxpeckers can cause incredible frustration for buff with open wounds so I suppose it is the same for rhino on a wound like this :hmz: No respite and one really feels for the animal. Bit off topic but does anyone have any ideas about if there is any possibility oxpeckers could help in a situation such as this by clearing necrotic tissue?? Or will it simply prolong the time the wound remains open? ----

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Re: Wounded rhino at Marakele??

Unread post by fralanti » Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:16 pm

Thanks to investigation into the matter and a very comprehensive response received from Chris Patton I am happy to report that (in his own words) thanks to "... helpful and informed replies from my colleagues it is the conclusion that there is nothing untoward and the animal is healthy."

Thanks Chris and colleagues for following up!! It is good to know our parks are in good hands.
:clap:

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Buffalo in Marakele.

Unread post by Flightchief » Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:38 pm

Does any body knows if buffalo has been reintroduced to Marakele?

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Re: Buffalo in Marakele.

Unread post by DuQues » Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:48 pm

Welcome to the forums!

Marakele is home to most of the large mammals synonymous with the African bush, including elephant, black and white rhino, and leopard. Large Predators such as brown hyena, leopard and now also lion, occur in the park. Resident antelope include, sable, kudu, eland, impala, waterbuck, tsessebe and many smaller species. Chacma baboon and vervet monkey are two species to be watched carefully for mischief, particularly around the rest camps.

So, no buffs yet, sorry.
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Re: Buffalo in Marakele.

Unread post by Paul Daphne » Tue Aug 07, 2012 8:03 am

A quick update on the buffalo at Marakele. SANParks has re-introduced buffalo following an absence of two to three years.

We had to remove all the buffalo due to an outbreak of the Theleria disease. There was then a two year quarantine period, and we have now re-introduced 15 sentinel bulls which will be tested in a year or so.

If they are still disease free further breeding herds will be introduced.
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Imberbe
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Re: Buffalo in Marakele.

Unread post by Imberbe » Tue Aug 07, 2012 12:01 pm

This is excelent news, thanks Paul!

I can't wait to meet these sentinels!

From where were they re-introduced?
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Re: Buffalo in Marakele.

Unread post by Tom124 » Tue Aug 07, 2012 3:45 pm

Rooies wrote:Why only bulls Paul?


I suppose that if cows and bulls were introduced, the population would increase and (should disease make a reappearance) it would be an even bigger problem to eradicate it :?
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Re: Buffalo in Marakele.

Unread post by Paul Daphne » Sat Sep 08, 2012 1:00 pm

Sorry for not answering on this topic earlier.

We have only introduced bulls at this stage as we still need to monitor that the Theileria disease does not re-appear. The 15 bulls have all been collared so that they can be located and tested at a later stage.

The plan is to test a sample of the 15 at the end of this year (2012) and then to test all 15 in about April/May of next year (2013). They will then have gone through two rainy seasons since re-introduction.

If they are all negative we will introduce cows in order to establish viable breeding herds.
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