Tau Game Lodge Blog

Tau Game Lodge in Madikwe Game Reserve

Tau news in April

                

                                                                

Dear All, 

 

Another month has flown by here in Madikwe. The bush seems to eat time, days roll into one another, and as our Maintenance Manager Oom Lester says "It's always a Wednesday in the bush" 

 

Wonderful news on the weather - in the middle of April, we did indeed get some much needed rain. It was somewhere in the region of 50mm over the course of a few days, and it really has made a difference to the parched ground. To the great delight of the elephants, the reserve developed lots of puddles and great places to play, producing some fantastic elephant sightings with young and old alike covering themselves with mud and rolling around in these new playgrounds. We have seen some areas getting tinged with green, and some of the dust and flies have settled. We still need more, but even this fairly small amount could make all the difference as the winter months draw in. 

 

We have had a wonderful month of sightings, but personally, my favorite was on 24th of April. We often find it very difficult to find leopards here in Madikwe. These illusive, solitary, mystical cats often evade us, and can be very shy around vehicles. We often see tracks, but finding the prize is a rarity. During afternoon drive, from around 150mtrs away, I saw something fall from a large Boscia beside the road. As I got closer, I realised that is was a fairly large branch "How strange" I thought, to myself, without letting my guests know I had seen anything, so as not to raise false hopes! I slowed right down, and when I was around 50mtrs from the tree, I stopped, and asked everyone to stay quiet as I wanted to see what was going on. After around 30seconds, a huge male leopard dropped out of the tree, landed on the ground and casually looked in our direction. The cameras went crazy! He sauntered off into the bush nearby. I decided to give him some space and noticed that he had a very fresh warthog kill stashed in the tree. Murray and I left the area for a short time to give him some privacy, and when Murray returned, he saw the leopard slink out from the grass, and stroll back towards his kill in the tree. 

We are all very excited about finding this animal, as if he stays in the same area, and is comfortable with people viewing him, he could become a more regular feature. Wonderful news for guides and guests alike.

 

Until next month......


         


News in March from The Bush

    

Another month has flown by here at Tau, we are still hopeful for some more rain, and the mornings are starting to feel a little bit on the crisp side. We are delighted to have a new addition to our guiding team. Jesse has joined us from another reserve and we are now a team of 9 field guides here at Tau.

We are also a bit sad, as the big male lion, Kgakala, who was often seen in our area is no more. He was very old in lion years, but has left a fair few offspring around the reserve. He gave lots of people lots of joy, but such is nature, he will certainly be missed here.

On a lighter note, four lovely ladies from Australia have just left us after staying with us for 5 nights. Clare, Natalie, Martina and Matilda have had some really nice sightings, including a pride of lions feeding on a giraffe carcass, cheetah sleeping in the sun, a huge herd of elephant interacting at the dam and 50 or more buffalo spreading out through the bush close to the lodge.  Staying for 5 nights also gave us the opportunity to spend some time looking at some of the lesser known beauties of the bush. We sat for a long while at a brown hyena den, watching a youngster relax in the afternoon sunshine. We also spent around 20minutes following the most relaxed serval I have ever seen. It was walking elegantly through the grass, then stopped and flushed a snake out from inside a bush, before carrying on its way. We also stayed for quite some time, watching a group of 4 elephants having a fantastic time in the mud outside the lodge, with a very small baby totally covering itself in mud, before realising it couldn’t see, and trying to rub the mud from its face on Mom’s back legs! Meanwhile, a slightly older elephant lost track of his group and went trumpeting off into the bush, before he was called back and chastised for going off on his own. We were also joined in the vehicle by a beautiful grass hopper, which the ladies took great delight in photographing. We also spent a while looking at the night sky, no lights, no sounds, just appreciating this fantastic place that some of us are lucky enough to call home.  It is really special for us guides to be able to spend some quiet time with guests to try and really make them feel part of the environment.  

It was great to meet you ladies – we are already missing you here at Tau and hope to see you back again soon. Kelly x