As we near the end of the dry season it has been exciting times at Welgevonden as the plains projects which have been underway for the last couple of years come to fruition. The plains projects were established to increase the nutritional value of the grazing available on the reserve. By increasing the ‘sweetness’ of the grazing and the nutritional value of the fodder to the plains game species we are seeing an improvement in the survival rate of the young with the result of increased populations. We are seeing huge herds of Zebra, Wildebeest, Impala, Eland and other plains game species during our drives. Predator numbers are influenced by the prey species so this bodes well for our predator sightings in the future.
The lions have made a full comeback on the reserve after the setback with the Canine distemper outbreak in 2015. 2 full prides and one free roaming male recorded in recent times. The resident male in the west killing a warthog in front of our guests and the lionesses killing a zebra within earshot of the lodge. An unknown lioness has also appeared on the reserve making things interesting, it is always good to see there is some movement of these large predators between the reserves of the Waterberg.
New arrival - we received a phone call from a nearby farm with the news that they had found a small African Wild Cat kitten. There was no sign of the mother or siblings through the following day so they took the kitten in and tried to feed her and keep her alive which has been successful. These cats cannot be tamed so we offered to keep her at wild ivory until large enough to release. So far she is settling in well and hope to release her in the coming months. We hope she will consider the lodge surrounds as her home and return for regular visits.
We are now entering one of the most speical times of the year as we await the first rains and enjoy the warm weather. We look forward to sharing this with our guests to visit soon.