Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Fair well to Djuma but not goodbye!

A flower I have not seen before. It looks to be an orchid of sorts.
If anyone can help with the id please do!
Hi everyone!

I finally managed to get out on drive a couple of days ago and yesterday and was hoping to have some pictures of the queen herself, but sadly she is playing hide and seek! Karula and the kids were seen down by room 8 yesterday by the staff, but by the time I could go down and look for them, the royal family of Djuma had vanished! 

Carmine bee-eater.
First time I have seen one at Djuma!
There is some interesting news though I had from a couple of viewers who I joined on drive on Sunday. They saw Xivindzi with her father Yambilu-Jordaan down on the other side of Gowrie dam on Sunday morning! I wonder where Karula and her son were and wish I could have seen them before I left!

The Mluwati viewing from Gowrie Main
I did go and visit the hyena den, but there was no one at home, although Pete says he saw a young hyena close to camp as he came in last night. I think they have been hanging around lately because every so often I find tracks out side on my own beach outside my room! (Oh yes, I forgot to tell you I had a river bed outside my room when I arrived back from all the sand washing through camp!)

The river bed opposite twin dams, it is now a beach! 
The lions have been active lately. We heard a couple of lions calling all through the night last night to the north of camp, who must have been the 2 Nkuhuma females that have been seen over the last couple of days and 8 of the Styx were seen at Arathusa airstrip this morning! Only 4 lionesses remained in the pride after the Majingilanes are thought to have reduced their number for reasons only known to them. I am not sure the how many of the 8 were adults and cubs but it is great to hear they are further north than Mala Mala, which is where they have been for many months now.

The younger of the 2 ladies.
Notice the pink on her nose!
The Nkuhuma ladies were looking well, if not a little scarred, when I saw them Sunday evening. One is extremely pregnant, due to pop very soon! What made the sighting even more wonderful was the approach of 2 rhino (which is why I didn't want to say where we saw the lions!) One of whom was a male we saw from the crash of 6.  The old bull who had what looked to be a very uncomfortable and peculiar swelling between his legs, 
Our bull rhino
I am sure you will remember him if you have met him before! They were extremely weary, which I am not surprised about as one of the tawny cats had just toileted and believe me even I could smell it! 

The elder of the 2 Nkuhuma lionesses
It took a while for the lionesses to notice the onlookers but both parties after checking the other was not going to suddenly charge, were unfazed by the other's presence and the 2 ton heavyweights continued on their way after having a little tiff between themselves, leaving the ladies to doze a while longer!

Female telling our bull to keep his distance!
I did see the Gowrie gang very briefly again. They seem to be keeping a low profile and they are just too quick for me to get a snap shot of them! I did how ever get a nice one of the young giraffe who was out on the open area. I would say roughly around 2 years old. 

I thought I would add a few pictures in to show you the transformation of some of the Mluwati river bed and other areas. Most of the roads are drying out. Tree house dam was unchanged and I have heard Buffleshoek dam is still in tact. I think the most amazing sight is baboon pan which is now being nicknamed baboon dam!

Baboon pan, aka baboon dam!
Notice the road going in!

Phillamon's dip at the pump house.
This is going to be my last blog for a while from Djuma. I do hope to return to check in from time to time on our favourite animals. While I am away I will be handing the reins over to Jaco and Texan and I for one look forward to seeing their blogs. (They have been briefed on who especially you would like to hear about as well as all the goings on in the reserve!) 

Spaghetti junction, looking towards vultures nest.
The tree blocks the road on the left of the frame.
Take care everyone, thank you for reading and until next time, keep smiling, people will wonder what you are up too! I will leave you with one of my favourite moments, not the best picture but to have all the family in one shot was very special! 

From left to right:
Karula, Xivindzi, Xivambalana, Yambilu-Jordaan.


  1. Thank you, Tara and best of luck for your future.

  2. Hi Tara,

    Glad you not going to let go. Good luck with your new venture


  3. All the best Tara .. cant believe the Mulwati!!

  4. Well thanks for keeping us all informed. Hope you will be able to blog at your next job with the leopards!! Good luck !!

  5. Thank you for the update,
    All the best to you Tara,
    We all hope you enjoy your next venture and, we hope you keep us all up to-date on the goings on there... love from all the Djuma Djunkies,
    many thanks Paul Ashleigh

  6. Thank you so much again for sharing your adventures with us Tara!
    I pray this new chapter holds all the happiness and excitment
    that Djuma did.
    We will out for the animals too, when they get a chance to fix to
    fix the cameras.
    God is with you..don't forget to look for his footsteps when you
    are tracking!!!!

  7. I will miss your wonderful blogs from Djuma. Your pictures are awesome. I know all of the animals miss you but not as much as Ido. May God bless you in your new adventure, remember He is walking right beside you.

  8. Thank You Tara, for your updates and pictures. They are so special as YOU are to me. I always enjoy them . I wish you the best on this new adventure in your life and will sure look forward to each and every future blog that comes from you. I am sure you enjoyed taking a drive thru djuma for old times sake and lets hope you get a chance to go back again soon. God Bless and Prayers for you to enjoy this new adventure. Love you my gr-daughter.

  9. Oh, Tara, this makes me happy and sad at the same time! You sound so excited and I wish you nothing but the best experience of your life. We miss you, but as the saying goes.....gone, but not forgotten. Be well.

  10. Tara, thank you very much for all your wonderful blogs of our Djuma animal friends. We will miss you at Djuma and I pray that the people with whom you will be working appreciate you as much as we do. Please keep in touch (perhaps a blog of your new experiences) we all need to know what you are up to, you are after all Family! Best Wishes for this next chapter of your life, I am sure all those with whom you will be working will be as blessed as we all are. Take care pretty lady!