The Lion Lady – Live from the Bush – Oct 7, 2011
WOW!!!! I am not sure where to start!!! This morning we left Bilila at 5:45 am and headed directly back to central Serengeti to see if we could see some more leopards. On the way we passed giraffe, wildebeest, Thomson gazelles, hippos, warthogs, baboon, hartebeest and hyena. At 7:05 our guide (who is excellent, of course) spotted a leopard sitting at the base of a tree about 75 feet away. We were watching it intently, when it lay down. Then we saw a leopard sitting at the base of the tree and thought, there must be 2 leopards. Indeed there were!! As we were watching along came a hyena sniffing the bottom of the tree where the leopards had just been, The 2 leopards seemed to be surrounding the hyena and possibly going after it. Just as they got within a few feet the hyena escaped. We stayed for 1.5 hours before any other vehicles approached. During that time they were playing and chasing each other rolling around just like house cats. It was so much fun to watch.
We finally left and went about 1/2 mile and came across 1 more leopard with a kill in the tree. Just behind that leopard was a cheetah with a kill as well. The cheetah was being harassed by 2 jackals trying to steal her food. At 9:12 am we were at a lioness right next to the road lying in a dead tree. At 9:25 we were at a mother cheetah with 2 cubs!!!! We continued out to Masaai Kopjes and saw reedbuck, dik dik, more jackals and more giraffe. We decided to return to Bilila to enjoy the afternoon since our morning had been so jam packed with super sightings!! On the way we encountered one group of 23 giraffe crossing the road, 46 elephants and another group of 12 giraffe, a very large herd of wildebeest migrating, hartebeest, zebra and more Tommies!! WHAT a day!!! Final count so far – 37 lions, 7 cheetah & 5 leopards!!! (And I ran into my good friend Phillip who is the restaurant manager at Bilila!!!) Now after a super lunch of prawns tempura, I am writing this blog post!!
Oct 5th – evening at Migration camp – we had a special treat of a mother genet cat and her baby right next to us while we sat around the bon fire – the baby was so small and so cute- an experience -I will not forget!!!
Oct 6th – After a wonderful breakfast we departed Migration Camp and headed towards central Serengeti. We saw baboon, warthogs, wildebeest, hartebeest, ostrich, zebra, topi and then came across 4 lioness, some cape buffalo, grants gazelle, jackals, secretary birds, hyrax, giraffe, monitor lizard with a small baby monitor lizard, impala, hyena, elephants, and at 11:04 we were at our first leopard with a kill in the tree. It was about 30 feet from the road but quite well hidden. At 12:07 we were at a 2nd leopard, which was a baby. Some jackals, waterbuck, 14 Elephants and about 200 cape buffalo and then 9 lions rounded out our game drive for the day.
I ran into two old friends along the way, whom I have known for 14 years, Ellieta was at the Seronera airport (he is now assistant manager at Kirawira) and Vincent was at the gas station (he is manager at Mbuzi Mawe) it is always good to see my local friends!!!!Who always make me feel very welcome and right at home!!! I also ran into Nickson and Peter who used to work with ADS. To top off the day I had one of the best massages ever at the spa here at Bilila. I highly recommend their treatments!!! A fabulous dinner and then early to bed!!!
Tomorrow we will have a nice breakfast at Bilila and then drive up to Grumeti Game reserve where we will be staying at Sabora. I am excited to return once again at one of my most favorite places to relax. I will try to update you again from there.
I am having difficulty uploading photos, so please bear with me. Asante Sana!!!