Author Archives Vanessa

May 24, 2012

The Days Of Our Lions

The lion has been an icon for humanity and have enjoyed a positive depiction in culture as strong but noble. Gondwana’s male lion fits the description perfectly. Until recently the male and female lions have avoided each other residing on opposite ends of the reserve. Gondwana management intervened to promote a bonding process whereby the entire pride was relocated to the centre of the reserve and temporally held in the predator boma. Lions are the only members of the cat family to display obvious sexual dimorphism—that is, males and females look distinctly different. They also have specialised roles that each gender plays in the pride.
Cupid’s arrow struck and within a week, it was like Valentine’s Day in March. The bonding process has been successful and once behavior such as the cheek rubbing and mating was seen, the felines were released back onto the reserve. The lion is the only truly social member of the cat family. Females form the stable social unit in a pride and do not tolerate outside females, membership only changes with the births and deaths of lionesses.
These apex predators have remained cohesive and are successfully hunting. We look forward to the results of the time spent on honeymoon in the boma. The King of Gondwana has resumed his position with his ladies at his side.- By John Vogel

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December 5, 2011

7 Unforgettable Nights, 3 Extraordinary Destinations

Experience an unforgettable trip that will commence in Cape Town, the most popular destination in the world as rated by Trip Advisor at the magnificent Cape Royale Luxury Hotel. The journey will continue onto Gondwana Game Reserve a 5 star, 11 000 hectare private reserve on the Garden Route and culminate in the most luxurious golf resort in South Africa, Pezula, which is situated on the oceanside cliffs of Knysna.

Download the brochure and start planning today!

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December 5, 2011

Time is precious for little Dominique

Time is precious for little Dominique

Gondwana recently heard about a heartbreaking story right here in Sedgefield and immediately jumped in and supported the Du Toit family.

Read their story here.

Should you wish to assist the Du Toit family in any way please contact Louise – louise@gondwanagr.co.za so we can see if we can continue to support the family during this tough time.

Thank you for your support and generosity.

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October 11, 2011

Buffalo on horseback

On the 14th of June myself, Tracey, Justin Dare our stable manager and one of our homeowners Aarnie Van Der Horst went on a outride , I picked up a problem with my bridle and had to return to the stables with Justin.

We decided we had to canter and gallop to catch up to Tracey and Aarnie so we had a great time riding through the fynbos, however they were too fast for us.

We just took it all in and rode amongst Cape mountain zebra, Bontebok, Eland, Red Hartebees .Our Riding area is truly an awesome experience for all levels of rider.

On our way back we spotted Two Buffalo and decided to go in for a closer look, this was great as one can get close to the game on horseback. The buffalo decided to come and investigate us and my horse was not to keen on this and ran off a bit with buffalo crashing through the trees behind us. The horse quickly relaxed and the buffalo ran passed me. Justin had ridden around to assist me but all was
well and we had just had an amazing encounter with our local buffalo. Our horses are used to the game and ridden daily ,this ensures a great outride experience at Gondwana.

We have horses to suit all levels and an outride in the fynbos with Justin and Tracey is something i would highly recommend.

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October 11, 2011

Lion Kill At Kwena

Last week after the heavy rains we were on our way in to Kwena Lodge when we spotted fresh lion tracks as well as zebra tracks, The lions were following them on a hunt.

We suspected something had happened nearby as we could feel the tension in the air ,shortly afterwards Chantelle De Bertoli called in that she had spotted a dead zebra 30 meters from the entrance gate of the lodge. Myself and Arno Smit went on a search for the lions to get a location on them. We followed their tracks in our vehicle for a while but couldn’t get a clear view so we went on foot.

This was great as we could read the “story” as to how the lions stalked the zebra and ambushed her, from the tracks we found where they had attacked and in the end we found the carcass and then realized we needed to get onto our vehicle as soon as.

What a great experience though tracking the lions all the way to a kill. What a way to start ones day! Gondwana truly offers once in a lifetime experiences for guests and staff everyday!

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October 11, 2011

Happenings during September 2011

Happenings during September 2011

Through this newsletter, we hope to share our excitement with you and keep you updated on all of the conservation efforts on the reserve.  Thank you to all that contributed, looking after our wildlife really is a team effort. A special thanks to John Vogel from our wildlife team for spearheading this initiative. An additional 500 head of general game were introduced this winter including kudu, eland, bontebok, red hartebeest, ostrich, gemsbok, and zebra. Read about our recent cheetah introduction and watch this space to hear about exciting Brown Hyeana and Giraffe introductions in the near future!

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September 14, 2011

Cheetah Release

Cheetah Release

Two wild cheetah have taken their first steps to a new life on Gondwana’s 11 000 hectare reserve.
The arrival of the two males has sparked much excitement with frequent sightings being reported on
a daily basis by staff and guests. The two males join the male and female cheetah that were released
in September 2010. Gondwana is privileged to participate in the conservation of this endangered and
beautiful species. These two cats will add a new dynamic to the balance of the ecosystem within the
reserve.

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July 27, 2011

500 Head Of Game, Spa Doors Opened

500 Head Of Game, Spa Doors Opened

Gondwana Game Reserve continues to invest in its wildlife program with kudu, eland, springbok, red hartebeest, ostrich, gemsbok and zebra being released this winter totalling 500 head of general game. The cheetah and hippo populations introduced in 2010 have settled well, with frequent sightings on game drives. Gondwana also plays home to free roaming big five populations including the endangered black rhino and over 10 species of antelope.

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April 26, 2011

Young 'Bulls'

Our young Elephant Bull, Mabitsi, has a special relationship with Trevor, one of our Rangers.

They are both the same age (a young and tender 22) and for some reason when Trevor finds him in the veld, Mabitsi always has to kick up some dust and do a little show!

Guests love to see this and although safety is always first, it is a highlight to see how these two young ‘bulls’ interact with each other!

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April 11, 2011

Lion Hunt

One Thursday night I went out on drive with two clients in the Red rocks area in search of  lions.

The area is perfect for them with long grass and a rusty colouration… ideal for a lioness to lie in ambush – as my guests remarked.

After a while we started heading back to Kwena camp and found our magnificent pride walking towards our security gate two with a weary guard in it.(Our male lion loves to chew the guard’s doormat and stare deep into his eyes late at night).

We started following them and got really close to them, they were on a hunting mission and were after Zebra this evening. The reached the road and split up as though they had sat and planned an attack, the three lionesses went one way and the male went to the far right and hid in a burm at our communications tower .

We were right next to him and he crouched down low and started moving slowly towards the zebra, they could sense something was wrong and grouped together. The male moved in to pounce and at that very moment Viktoria Dedola came driving right through the hunt…this did not bother them, instead the male attacked in the dust left behind by the car and chased the zebra towards the lionesses.

The zebra broke through the attack and one lioness nearly grabbed a zebra mare but was run over and shook her head in disgust!

What an awesome experience for clients to see!!!

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