BY TREVOR MCCALL-PEAT & VILLIERS STEYN
This morning we decided to search for the resident Nkuhuma lion pride. We set off into a misty Sabi Sands just before sunrise. The scenes were magical.
We rounded a corner and found the lions in the road. At first we could only see two females but soon realised that the entire pride was there, 5 females, 6 cubs and one male from the Birmingham coalition. Our guests managed to get some great images of a cub drinking from a small pan and one of the females posed nicely on a small termite mound.
We then headed off for a coffee stop and heard that a leopard had been spotted nearby. It was Tingana. He has really been elusive over the last few days but we decided to follow up and try our luck a third time.
The other guides lost Tingana in a block and we all worked together to relocate him. We used alarm calls from some francolins to finally locate him. He was moving very erratically through the bush from termite mound to termite mound, checking for any meals lurking below. We spent a good hour with him and everyone managed to get some different but great shots of him.
After our time with Tingana we headed back to the lodge for a hearty brunch followed by a one on one Lightroom session where we focussed on editing our leopard shots.
After lunch we headed out on drive and went back to where we left the lions. We soon found them, they were flat and fast asleep. We left and decided to have a drinks break before we would return when the lions were hopefully more active. We found some elephants who treated us to another amazing show at Sydney’s dam before we stopped for sundowners.
We then headed back to the lions who we found now spread out around a large termite mound. A distant lion roar caused the lions to stir. We then spent 40 minutes bagging some beautiful side and backlit images of the lions before we turned off all lights and our radios, and just listened to the lions as they contact called to each other. An amazing moment which was a perfect way to end off yet another amazing day on this Big Cat Photo Safari.