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The cubs of the Emsagweni Female

The Emsagweni female leopard is one of MalaMala’s most iconic cats. Sporting one eye and frayed ears, this battle-axe of the bush holds a large territory in some of the more rocky and wooded parts of the reserve. Although sightings of her are not as frequent as some of our other beloved leopards, she remains a guest favourite because of her scrappy appearance and hardcore demeanour.

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Local Legends: An update on the Gowrie males

The Gowrie males are arguably one of, if not the, most successful coalition MalaMala and the Sabi Sands have seen in recent history. They have reigned supreme for more than half a decade; in which time they have successfully sired the next generations from five different prides.

Leaping Leopard

A leopard's last leap

If you’re one of those people that likes to while away hours of the day watching wildlife videos, it’s likely you have encountered the YouTube video that MalaMala posted on the 2nd of December 2021. If you are not, we suggest you watch it before you read any further...


Coalition warfare

In recent days, the soundtrack to life at MalaMala hasn’t been the “krit-trrrrr” of the returning Woodland Kingfisher, nor is it the “dee-dee-deederik” of the Diedrick Cuckoo, rather, it’s been the deep, bellowing “ohhhhffff” of lions roaring.

If you read the last blog on lions you may recall the statement, “for the most part, we like to think we have our finger on the pulse”. The events that have unfolded in the last few weeks may serve to prove this wrong.

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Lions, lions,lions!

On the morning of the 17th of October, several lions were found feeding on a buffalo carcass. While it is common to view lions feeding on an eviscerated bovid, the composition of the group and the events that unfolded in the days that followed left us scratching our heads....

2 Photo by our guest Marius Coetzee

Anthropomorphism and the naming of animals

Anthropomorphism is a fancy word used to describe the practice of ascribing human characteristics to animal behaviour. All that being said, we do name our lions and leopards. But at MalaMala, the names are certainly not born out of anthropomorphism.

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Leopard update

In this blog we’ll focus on a ‘hotspot’ that has formed along 4kms of the Sand River and involves no fewer than 12 different leopards, well 15 if we include 3 cubs. It’s definitely a space to watch over the coming months!

1 The Gowrie males Photo by Ranger Gareth Nuttall Smith

Lions of MalaMala

With winter looming it should come as no surprise that the topic of lion dynamics is taking centre stage. We have already seen early signs of territorial shifts / takeovers and on top of that we have been seeing A LOT of lions recently. 83 different individuals were viewed on the reserve in April!


World Rhino Day

The 22 September is World Rhino Day and in 2020 we celebrate the “Five Rhino Species Forever” including both the African and Asian rhino species.