Wildlife Predator Stories
THE VALUE OF SECURING VULTURE-SAFE TERRITORIES ACROSS AFRICA
Marcus Westberg provides insight into vulture conservation - both the wins and the challenges - and the value of Vulture Safe Zones, like Tswalu, that provide safe habitat for vultures to reestablish populations across Africa.
UP CLOSE WITH A CHEETAH AND HER CUBS
Keeping track of a collared cheetah has been full of surprises for conservator Micole Monteiro. Close monitoring as this mother raises her cubs has given Micole renewed respect for the challenges that face female cheetahs.
WHAT IT TAKES TO HABITUATE A CHEETAH
Cheetah sightings are excellent on the reserve. To find out what it takes to habituate these cats to the presence of humans, Marcus Westberg shadowed conservator Clement Motau for a day.
THE HYENAS THAT CALL TSWALU HOME
Did you know that Tswalu is home to three hyena species? The aardwolf, brown hyena and spotted hyena all play an important role in the health of the Kalahari ecosystem.
HIGHLY ADAPTIVE BROWN HYENA
The hierarchy of the brown hyena is quite complex, with aggressive rituals dominating relationships. Clans are incredibly territorial, and may cover an area of up to 500 square kilometres.
Three of South Africa’s nine vulture species, including the once-prolific White-backed vulture, have declined to such an extent that they are regarded as Critically Endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
THERMAL ECOLOGY OF CAPE COBRAS
Even though Cape cobras are quite conspicuous snakes (they are large, with colours ranging from bright yellow through speckled brown to almost black), there is still much that is not known about their ecology.
BOOMSLANG – PREDATOR AND PREY
The boomslang (meaning ‘tree snake’ in Afrikaans) is regularly sighted at Tswalu, winding its way through the massive nests of sociable weavers. The snakes move from chamber to chamber, looking for food, then wedge their bodies into the chamber hole when they find the chicks or eggs they’re after.
RAISING CHEETAH CUBS
Recently at Tswalu Kalahari, a cheetah gave birth to five cubs. Unfortunately, only a few of these little cubs have a chance of reaching adulthood and independence.