On Saturday the 5th of November 2016, together with an official from GDARD (Gauteng Department of agricultural and rural development – Nature Conservation) and members of Vulpro (Vulture Conservation Programme)[www.vulpro.com] we released a ± 1 year old male Martial eagle (Polemaetus bellicosus) onto central Kwalata inside the Dinokeng Game Reserve.
Recently we re-collared and released our female cheetah from the boma where she had been held while her new collar was made. Up to now she has been known only as female 19. The winner of the Cheetah Naming Competition are Ludger Helm and Monique van Klev – congratulations to you both and thank you for your continued support of the DGR.
The name they chose for our cheetah is " Thembalethu" which means " our hope" in IsiXhosa.
First Prize in the competition was the opportunity to participate in the re-collaring and the release of the cheetah, and Monique had the opportunity to be part of this once in a lifetime experience.
The two males are moving freely throughout the northern portion of the reserve and have managed to elude the lion that make up the Northern Pride.
Male 40 is lighter in colour than his brother (male 49). And if you look at their behaviour, he is clearly not dominant in the coalition.
The males 40 and 49 for now are named Lalibela males, due to their origin. They were born in the 7500 ha Lalibela Game Reserve located in the Eastern Cape, close to Port Elizabeth and Addo. They are more lucky than the females from their litter, who did not survive to the stage of independence. Our males roam the DGR in a coalition, a common behaviour of male cheetahs, while females live solitary.
At the age of 19 months the first female cheetah born in the Dinokeng Game Reserve reached independence and moved to the southern part of the reserve.
Within the South Africa Cheetah Meta population project for gene pool management our mother cheetah got transferred to the Mountain Zebra NP. In return we will get a young female.
In the next coming blogs we will make you familiar with these individuals. But before we want to elaborate how the naming works, what contribution we ask for and what you stand a chance to get in return.
Our first male was born in the Eastern Cape and came to Dinokeng from Witkoppie Monate near Modimolle. The first adult female came from the Karongwe game reserve near Hoedspruit.
Early on a crisp winters morning – Mandela Day 18 July 2015, the DGR Team assembled at the Ndlovu Gate to start packing the game drive vehicles with all the donations that they had received from SuperSpar, Jubilee Mall, as well as blankets, paints and painting supplies purchased from generous donations from many of the landowners in the DGR.
Friday morning early, saw rain in abundance in the DGR as the heavens opened and the sound of thunder and torrents of rain reverberated through the bushveld. The veld was blessed with further rain last night in certain areas.