December 2018 – Mluwati Concession

By 1st Jan 2019 Aug 30th, 2019 Ranger Diaries

To all our guests past and present, and those that are still to come, a warm welcome from the beautiful Mluwati Concession here in the famous Kruger National Park.

What an amazing transformation in the bush here on Mluwati Concession we have been blessed with over 100mm of rain through the month, although driving has been a little tricky and some river crossings closed all of our guests have been able to experience this awesome transformation with us. Being the festive season guests have been treated to some of the most amazing sightings throughout the month.

We would like to wish all of our guests all the very best for 2019, to those who will be coming for the first time through the new year we look forward to hosting you all here with us. To all of our guests who shared the festive season with us we would like to extend our thanks to you and your families for sharing our unique concession with us.

Lions

Although this has been a relatively quiet month for Lions, there have still be some great sightings. The Hamiltons cubs are still doing well but getting bigger by the day, Imbali Pride have been scarce this month and since the river is now flowing we presume that they are in the Nkhombe / Hammerkop block which is now inaccessible due to the river flowing. Some new lions have been seen on our western cutline which are unknown to us. Torchwood pride has been seen once this month briefly at KNP Corner, and a couple of Big Males were also seen around concession.

The Imbali lion pride were seen on several occasions throughout the central parts of the concession as well as on a Buffalo kill which we think died of natural causes. The Pride chased the Hyenas off the buffalo kill and scavenged a free meal in the process. There were also some nomadic sub adult males and Lionesses which were seen around the western Boundary.

Leopard

A wow month for leopard, Shidulu has been sighted around Hamilton’s Tented Camp in the beginning of December but still remains further south of the camp most of the time, Nkhanye “cub” has now left her mother and she has been seen on a few occasions on the S125 lying in a tree or crossing the road. She has become a great sight for all of our guests and even for the public with her relatively relaxed nature around the vehicles. Spook has given the guides some really breath-taking sightings of himself throughout the month – as his name means “ghost” he will normally give guests a sneak preview and then disappear it has been relatively different with him this month. Wabayisa is still moving around between Hamilton’s, Hoyo Hoyo and also Imbali and is seen from time to time marking territories or wandering through the riverbed.

Cheetah

What an amazing month for cheetah sightings, 3 cheetahs seen on the road close to Imbali Access, 3 cheetahs have been very active along Western and Southern Cutline. The rains have bought on the birth of Impala lambs which seem to be the favour of the 3 Cheetah around Imbali and Hamilton’s. Guides and guests have been entertained throughout the month by these rare and unique predators.

Wild Dogs

These highly endangered Carnivores and expert hunters are always a hit with guests and guides alike. For many of our guests this is a once in a lifetime sighting.

After the huge rains which fell on the 28th December 2018 we had over 100mm of rain which fell throughout the concession. Guides and guests were witness to the dogs playing in the water and running amok. Such a special sighting for everyone our guide Kyle de Costa took some amazing shots of the craziness with long stay guests being on his vehicle who have been given this rare glimpse into the dynamics of the Hamilton’s Pack.

Elephant and Buffalo

Good sightings of Elephant throughout the concession in the beginning of the month before the rains, after the rains most of the big herds have disappeared with a few smaller groups still around the concession. Big bulls have been seen throughout the month.

Buffalo herds have become scarce around the lodges now that we have had rain as water is freely available all over the concession animals are no longer relying on the waterholes. Dagga Boys are still being seen grazing on the fresh grass which is growing all over.

Birds

Swifts, swallows, raptors and all kinds of birds are feasting around concession in the early mornings and late evenings with the flying ants which come out in their thousands. Huge flocks of Amur Falcons have been seen over Imbali Staff Village and also the open area just outside Imbali Main gate.

Saddle Billed Storks are back at the old nesting site South of the Tswayini crossing, looking forward to watching the chicks grow up again. European Rollers, Woodland Kingfishers, Broad Billed Rollers the concession has evolved into a bird lovers paradise again.

The concession is teaming with amazing sights, stunning green panoramas and water flowing in the rivers. We even have our own orchestra at night with frogs and toads advertising themselves and their territories to all.

 “May the call of the African Fish Eagle ring out through the savannas and may the roar of the lion vibrate through your soul….”

 THE GUIDES OF THE MLUWATI CONCESSION