There has been a drastic increase in hyena activity in and around Leopard Mountain over the past two years.
Last year we had seven hyenas from two separate clans fight over a massive kudu bull in the riverbed below the lodge. Hyenas are showing an increased curiosity towards our vehicles as well. They walk around the vehicles sniffing the bumper and even sniffing the rear-view mirrors. These much closer encounters are very sudden and recent manifestation and it’s very interesting to watch the sudden change in behaviour.
Another rare spectacle was watching a group of about four hyenas chase a herd of wildebeest. The hyenas were then chased off by the herd. On a separate occasion, a female Nyala was chased through the lodge building and taken down in our reception. We were lucky enough to have hyenas join us for dinner service the following evening where they scavenged on the remains that was dragged past the chalets.
We are also fortunate to have a den site not too far from the lodge. A clan has made itself a home where at least two pups have been seen by a local guide. We can’t wait to see what the future has in store for us!
A very special thank you to Brad Smith for the images.