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LEOPARDS - in Nkorho and Elephant Plains Area

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krukab's picture
Joined: Feb 18 2006


Leopard ~ Panthera pardus ~

Leopard INFO


Our leopards are also being darted against rabies. We’ve literally had a baby boom in the leopard population! Kurula has a four month old cub, Ntima has six week old cubs, Whitecloth has four month old cubs and even Salayexe has cubs, evident by her suckle marks, even though we haven’t seen the cubs yet.

donnabac's picture
Joined: Dec 24 2007

Ohhhh Goody! Laughing  Great background and pics. Thanks Aquila.

Aquila (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Since Mvula is seen more and more around Nkorho, we thought a bit of history on him may interest the viewers here.

Mvula Male Leopard aka Leadwood Male in Lion Sands

Mvula, which means rain, was named after first being spotted in a tree during a heavy downpour in Elephant Plains traversing area.

He is estimated to be about 5 yrs old - Dec. 2009.

He was quite a mystery when he first entered the Djuma/Gowrie area in July 2008. Finally, he was recognized as being the same young male leopard that had been seen at Leopard Hills and Elephant Plains during the previous nine months.

His true identity did not materialize until the formation of the Sabi Sands Leopard Identification Group on Facebook. Out of hundreds of photos being uploaded for identification, one caught our attention with it's similarities to the young male Mvula.

This Dec 2006 photo of the two year old Son of the Warthog Wallow female in Lion Sands was posted by Kaye Nicholson. The striking similarities confirmed the photo was indeed that of Mvula but Not the Son of the Warthog Wallow female as originally thought. Instead, Mvula is the Son of the Outcrop Female Leopard (sister & litter mate to the Warthog Wallow Female). Lion Sands solved the mystery to this male's true identity.

Photo by Kaye Nicholson - December 2006 - 2 year old male subadult

Lion Sands' history for Mvula or the Leadwood Male as he is known there: He was born in 2005 to the Outcrop Female. He was sired by Tumbela. Mvula's mother, the Outcrop female, was born in 2001. Her and her sister, the Warthog Wallow female, are daughters of the legendary Magondzwane (Hammerkop) (born in 1993)…and their father was Soshangane (both possibly deceased).

Mvula's brother/litter mate is known as the Tsova Male in Lion Sands.

Mvula is in the process of staking out his territory. He seems to move mostly around the Djuma/Gowrie, Nkorho, and Elephant Plains areas. He has attracted quite a bit of attention from some of the young female leopards recently. Inkanyeni, the young Beacon's female, followed him through several reserves trying ever so hard to get his attention. Unfortunately, he seemed to view her as more of a nuisance than anything else. That should change once he gets a bit older.

He is a strikingly beautiful leopard of good size and hopefully he will stay in the area and provide great viewing for many years to come.

A big Thank You to Edwin Pierce and Allan Ronchini for solving the mystery of Mvula's true identity... and Thank You Kaye Nicholson for posting the photo that set the stage for this identification.

Aquila (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Sharing a more detailed history on one of our favorite male leopards "Muff Daddy".

Mufufunyane/Mafufunyane Age approximately 11 yrs old at the end of 2009.

Also is known as the Gowrie male in Mala Mala. Was born in the latter part of 1998 to the Paradise Valley Female of Mala Mala. His father was the Rock Drift Male/Tjololo. He had one sibling another male.

Pictures below were posted in the Sabi Sands Leopard Identification group on facebook by Nancy Vandermey & Kaye Nicholson. Lots of leopards being ID'd there and cross referenced. Be sure to check it often. Smiling

Mufufunyane as a youngster by Nancy Vandermey:

His brother by Kaye Nicholson:

The brother apparently left their area fairly soon after reaching independence where as Muff over stayed his welcome and was known to be a real nuisance to females and their youngsters in the area. Harassing them and stealing many kills. The whereabouts of his brother is unknown at this time.

MalaMala Game Reserve wrote this about Mafufunyane/Paradise Valley Son in Sept 2001:

"At the end of the day, the thieving of kills and the blatant disrespect for territory shown by this young male will do no female leopards or their offspring any favours and in the same light will not help any adult male leopard in terms of ensuring that his offspring get the best possible chance of survival. Sooner or later the cub of Paradise Valley Female may well find himself in a predicament which teaches him a little more respect. Unfortunately for him, his father, the Rock Drift Male, has always been most tolerant of his behaviour and so the young male has perhaps grown accustomed to such an attitude. Anyways, it may soon be time for a rude awakening." http://www.malamala.com/MM7/LEOP_paradise.htm

He continued to be seen throughout most of 2002 in Mala Mala but with less frequency towards the end of 2002 and first half of 2003 when they stopped following him in their CyberDiary.

After leaving the Mala Mala and the Londolozi areas, Mufufunyane moved North and started his territorial take over. Eventually he pushed out the dominant male Xivati. Within his new territory at that time, there were two well known territorial female leopards, Saseka and Safari.

He is believed to be the father of Saseka's single female cub, Nyaleti, born Jan. 2003. In late March or early April of 2005, Saseka bore two cubs with only one surviving after a few months. The surviving cub was named Salayexe. The belief that Mufufunyane sired both Nyaleti and Salayexe is due to his interactions with the youngsters.

In 2004, Safari bore two female cubs also believed to be sired by Mufufunyane, Karula and Tshemba/Tsemba. Tshemba was reportedly killed by lions or another leopard in 2006. Karula continues to be territorial in the Gowrie/Djuma area to this day and is raising her second set of cubs.

Karula's first set of female cubs are thought to have been fathered by Mufufunyane as well.

Over the course of the years, there are bound to be even more cubs that he has sired and/or will sire.

Today he travels an expansive area (possibly becoming more nomadic) and is still seen venturing back into Mala Mala where he is known as the Gowrie male. His excursions there seem to be mostly when in search of females in estrous. He has been viewed on various occasions in Mala Mala mating with Safari and more recently, Dec 2009, with the Ostrich Koppies female (AKA Ripape female as known to Nkorho and Djuma Bush Lodge).


Iceage (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Thanks for the ID! Mvula looks GREAT!

he looks Happy and relaxed also.

The day Karula and her 2 sons will visit NK i will give a party !


Aquila (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Iceage wrote:

The beautifull leopard that visited NK 2 ore 3 days ago in daylight. Is it identified ?

Does anybody think there is a chance that Karula will bring her 2 sons Mixo and Induna to NK to show them the NK webcam also ?

( I hope so! )

Hi Iceage, I saw a picture of the leopard that visited NK posted by a Capt. Steve and it most definitely was Mvula. As for Karula visiting NK, I would be surprised to see her venture that far from her territory. Induna and Mixo very well might come to NK once they are independent though. Smiling


krukab's picture
Joined: Feb 18 2006

kru-kab bowser b.c. wrote:

howzit -  could you  identify this   cat,s   name ??

july  --- 08     2009

if possible -  thank you

Hallo Barry.

Yes they say it is Mvula.

he would be about 5 years old ( QUOTE FROM INGWE)


Mvula, roughly five years old,

kru-kab bowser b.c. wrote:

howzit -  you mentioned that the leopard had a kill

at or near nkrho pan could you tell us

species  - Impala

sex        - female

age        - 9months

can you tell us  what  animals  were at the  kill -


birds at kill     - None

eg- vultures- jackals hyena ? yes Jackal and Hyena at kill. The kill was up a tree

thank you


krukab's picture
Joined: Feb 18 2006

i think  this would be a rare site

Saseka had the Bushbuck kill and all

4 of the leopards, Karula, Saseka, Induna and Mixo

june  28  2009  - not at nkorho but

in the area

Tabs (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Half-Tail is a female leopard who was featured in the Big Cat Diaries which were filmed in the Masai Mara, Kenya.







bigcatlover48 (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

hi  as you can see from my screen name  what my favorites animals are.  the leopards are probably one of my favorites.

i wonder if you can answer  a couple of questions for me.

one i am surprised at all the info you have on the leopards.  i have heard in general one of the reasons leopards are doing so well compared to other big cats is they dont tend to like humans.  are you observatios from your sitings in general. 

i do love the pictures. 

question i dont know if you would know.  i dont know if this leopard was in this area.  i can remember where she is or was.

but i know of a leopard named half tail.  i had not heard about her in a  while.  and i think the last time i had heard of her they were metioning her in past tense terms.  did she pass on.??

 have a great day

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