An update on the Cheetah population in Pilanesberg

Here is an Update on the current cheetah population in the Pilanesberg.

There has been a lot of changes over the last few weeks with regards to the Pilanesberg cheetah population. The Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) keeps an eye on the cheetah population and genetics. Cheetahs have to be moved from one protected area to another in order to make sure their genes are spread and inbreeding doesn’t occur. Therefore the EWT makes the decisions on what needs to happen in order to make this possible.

Rains first litter of cubs in the Pilanesberg consisted of three males. These boys had to be relocated a few months back to avoid any inbreeding. This was unfortunately not before they got into a fight with their fathers which ended in both of them curcumin to their injuries.

On the 25 October, two new male cheetahs were introduced into The Pilanesberg National Park from Dinokeng.

So who is still in the reserve and how many cheetahs do we have left?

There are currently 5 cheetahs in the Pilanesberg.

  1. Our superstar Female cheetah “Rain” is here and we are hoping the two new males will find her as beautiful as we do.
  2. Rains’ latest offspring which is ready to leave her soon. He is a little male so will possibly be relocated to another reserve once he splits from her.
  3. Rains’ second litter of cubs with us consisted of two females and a male. The male hasn’t been seen for a long time so it is thought that he, unfortunately, didn’t make it. His sisters, however, are doing great! One has been relocated to Marakele National Park and the other remains here.
  4. Then we have the two new big males.

With the new males in the reserve, we are excited to see how the population will continue to grow and hope to share many exciting sightings with everyone.

The new boys on the block. The two new adult males that have been introduced into The Pilanesberg National Park seem to be doing well.  Here they were seen on a Redhartebeest kill.

The original adult males that were the last two cheetahs in the park before Rain was introduced. They, unfortunately, died from their injuries after fighting with their three male offspring.
Rains three boys, her first littler she had in the Pilanesberg. They have been relocated to another reserve.
Rain and her current male cub. He is getting big now and should be leaving her side soon at which point he will probably be relocated.

Highlights from October 2018

Every Game drive/Safari in the Pilanesberg is different, as field guides we drive through the gate and never know exactly what is going to happen. This all adds to the excitement as we head out on a game drive or Hot air balloon flight. 

And the rains have started, we have had a bit of rain to kick off the summer. Not a lot but enough to start turning the burnt areas green. We now wait with bated breath for more rain and for the babies to start being born. Here are some highlights we would like to share with you.

What is the difference between the black and white rhino? Updated

In the photo below we see the Black rhino on the left and White rhino on the right.

Black Rhino (Diceros bicornis)

White Rhino (Ceratotherium simum)

*There are two types of rhino in Africa – the black rhino and the white rhino.

*Don’t let the name fool you, rhinos are grey in color not black or white as their names suggest. One of the theories is that the term white rhino is a mistranslation;
the Dutch settlers in South Africa initially called them “Weid mond rhino”, meaning “Wide-mouth rhino.”

*They should be referred to as the square-lipped (white) and hook-lipped (black) rhinoceros.

*Rhinos have poor eyesight but they make up for this with an acute sense of hearing and smell.

*Both the black and white rhinos have two horns.

*A rhinos gestation period is around 15-16 months with the female giving birth to only one calf at a time.

White Rhino (Ceratotherium simum)

*The white rhino is a grazer with a wide mouth best designed for eating grass.
*It is not unusual to see White rhinos in a herd called a “Crash” of Rhinos (Make them run and you will know why).
*White rhinos are heavier then black rhinos with bulls weighing up to 2 300kg.

Black Rhino (Diceros bicornis)

*Black rhino’s are browsers, using their pointed upper lip to grasp leaves and twigs.
*Black rhinos are more solitary, being seen most often on their own.
*Black rhinos can reach up to around 1 000kg.

Rhinos use their horns for self-defense against predators and fighting off opponents.
The horns are the reason that the species overall are classified as Critically Endangered.
This is due to the demand of rhino horn on the black market for medicinal use in the Far East.
The horns are ever-growing at a rate around 6 cm a year.

Want to see these amazing animals up close? Why not do your bit to help the Rhinos and take part in Rhino notching:

Highlights from September 2018

Every Game drive/Safari in the Pilanesberg is different, as field guides we drive through the gate and never know exactly what is going to happen. This all adds to the excitement as we head out on a game drive or Hot air balloon flight. 

September was a month of fire! It is very dry at the moment and we battled with a massive fire that burnt a large section of the reserve. The animals are still wondering around in the burnt areas and once the rain comes it will all turn green. Here are some highlights we would like to share with you.

Did you know?

Did you know that kudus have a very large liver in order to handle the toxins (Tannins) in the plants that they eat?

Did you know that the gestation period of an elephant is 22 months? This is the longest gestation period of all mammals.

Did you know that the collective noun (name) for a group of Zebras is a dazzle?

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