News - 2013


December 2013

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Lion Movements - go to Current Locations.

In Honour of Madiba - 5 Dec 2013 20h50.

30 Dec 2013. Springbokwasser. Bernd Brell from Save the Rhino Trust spotted three lions from an aircraft during a patrol near Springbokwasser. The report was investigated and the lions appear to be sub-adults from the Agab Pride. Attempts will be made to immobilise and mark at least one of the lions this evening.

29 Dec 2013. Movement Updates

28 Dec 2013. Seals. Due to an unusually hot day many thousands of seals were observed playing in the waves close to Mowe Bay.

27 Dec 2013. Uniab Delta. A camera-trap was placed at the Uniab Delta to monitor the movements of lions other than the “Terrace Male”. Photographs retrieved from the camera (photo: top & bottom left) contained many images of Black-backed jackals and antelopes, like Oryx, but none of lions. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) was located on the edge of the Hoanib Floodplain (photo: right).

26 Dec 2013. Movement Updates

25 Dec 2013. Mowe Bay Cabin. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) moved passed the seal colony at Mowe Bay and reached Oasis spring near the mouth of the Hoanib River by midday. The increase of wildlife around Mowe Bay (springbok, Oryx and Cape fur seals – see 24 Dec 2013) is encouraging.

24 Dec 2013. Seal Colony. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) came very close to discovering the seal colony at Mowe Bay when he rested behind a ridge approximately 3.2 km east of the colony. The numbers of Cape fur seals utilising the colony have increased substantially during the past few months.

23 Dec 2013. Coast. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) captured an Oryx at the mouth of the Hoaruseb River. Xpl-73 “Rosh” could not be located despite an extensive search effort.

22 Dec 2013. Lone Male. The distant roars of a male lion were followed during the night and at sunrise Xpl-51 of the Agab Pride was located in the Kharu-Gaiseb River. The radio-signal of a lioness from the Hunkap Pride was heard in the direction of the Barab Mountains. The search for Xpl-73 “Rosh” continues.

21 Dec 2013. Camera-traps. Images retrieved from four camera-traps did not contain any records of Xpl-73 “Rosh”. There were many photographs of brown hyaenas and the tail end of a leopard at the Lower Obab spring.

20 Dec 2013. Obab River. A detailed search was conducted in the area of the last recorded location of Xpl-73 “Rosh” in mid-Nov 2013. The search was extended to the all the main tributaries of the lower Uniab, Obab and Beacon Rivers. No fresh signs of Xpl-73, or any other lion, have yet been found.

19 Dec 2013. Huab Lionesses. During the night the two Huab females (Xpl-75 “Angela” & Xpl-76) killed a Hartmann’s zebra in a narrow gorge. The small cubs of “Angela” were not visible due to the broken terrain. It was confirmed that Xpl-76 is not lactating. A systematic search for Xpl-73 “Rosh” will continue towards the Uniab, Obab & Hoanib Rivers.

18 Dec 2013. Huab Cubs. It is likely that one of the Huab lionesses (Xpl-76) lost her cubs during the past month. After many hours of observation there was no signs of the cubs and Xpl-76 does not appear to be lactating. The second lioness, Xpl-75 “Angela”, however, is still lactating and she was observed with three small cubs (see photos below). The age of the cubs is estimated to be 8 weeks. There is at least one male and one female, but the sex of the third cub could not be confirmed.

17 Dec 2013. Gai-Ais. The A new camera-trap was mounted at Gai-Ais spring between the Ugab and Huab Rivers. The camera was secured in a metal casing and will hopefully last longer than the previous two cameras that were removed by spotted hyaenas or people. At sunset the two Huab lionesses (“Angela” & Xpl-76) were located 8 km south of Peter’s Pool.

16 Dec 2013. Movement Updates

15 Dec 2013. Movement Updates

14 Dec 2013. Movement Updates

13 Dec 2013. Movement Updates

12 Dec 2013. Movement Updates

11 Dec 2013. Vehicle Branding. The Desert Lion Project would like to apologise to all sponsors for the changes that occurred with the logos and stickers of sponsors on both the old and the new Land Cruiser during recent months. The Desert Lion Project did not plan or initiate the changes, but we are ultimately responsible and intend to rectify the situation. All sponsors of the vehicle and large sponsors of the Project will be represented on the vehicles (unless they prefer otherwise). The dimensions of logos and stickers will correspond with the size and/or value of the donations and support. It is essential for the research work (especially when working with skittish lions) that the vehicle blends in with the environment. As a result, logos or stickers with white or bright backgrounds will have to be modified somewhat. Such changes will first be discussed with the relevant sponsors.

10 Dec 2013. Hoanib Camera-traps. Photographs retrieved recently from several camera-traps in the lower Hoanib area included unique records of two carnivore species (B-E fox & spotted hyaena) that do not normally occur there. One camera on the Hoanib Floodplain captured the Floodplain lionesses and the “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) during late-November 2013.

A Bat-eared fox 25 km from the coast

A spotted hyaena near the Hoanib Floodplain

Xpl-55 and Xpl-68 on the Hoanib Floodplain

9 Dec 2013. Hoanib River Floods. Extensive rains were recorded yesterday morning at the Wilderness Safaris Camp in the lower Hoanib River. Floodwaters extended far beyond the border of the Skeleton Coast Park and may have penetrated deep into the Hoanib Floodplain (information & all photos below by Emsie Verwey).

8 Dec 2013. Website Visits. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) appears to be heading on another of his ventures north of the Hoaruseb River. There is always concern over his safety and the likelihood of conflict with the local communities during these excursions. Results from the website statistics during the past year (see table below) indicate that, along with Barbados & Macedonia, website visits originated from a total of 89 countries, with Namibia contributing to the vast majority.

7 Dec 2013. Mowe Bay Airfield. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) moved over the dunes, following the Hoanib River, to Oasis spring and then to the eastern edge of the Mowe Bay airfield. He is currently heading northwards to the mouth of the Hoaruseb River. Valuable images of leopards were retrieved from a camera-trap at the Okongwe waterhole (see images below).

6 Dec 2013. Hoanib River. Heavy rains in the northwest of Namibia resulted in flooding of several ephemeral rivers, such as the Hoaruseb and the Hoanib Rivers. In the Hoanib River the flash floods (see photo below left at the Ganamub Poort - photo by Laura Brown ) reached Amp’s Poort yesterday afternoon. A camera-trap in the lower Hoanib River captured several photographs of honey badgers see (photos: top left & bottom left).

5 Dec 2013. "The Regulars". Four students from the Waterfront Theatre Collage in Cape Town, South Africa, embarked on a remarkable initiative in aid of the desert-adapted lions in Namibia. Initiated by Bianca Green, after whom the Hoanib Pride lioness (Xpl-47) is named, the four students developed and choreographed an original “20’s-Something” musical that they performed at the Galloway Theatre in Cape Town on 28 & 29 Nov 2013 and at the League Sports Bar Lounge in Windhoek on 3 & 4 Dec 2013. The four shows in Cape Town and Windhoek were hugely successful and “The Regulars” will end their tour with two performances in Swakopmund on 6 & 7 December 2013 at the Horst Fritze Aula Private School (for details see image: below right).

> > Bianca Green with Xpl-47 (5 May 2008) > >


"The Regulars" - Byron Bure, Bianca Green, Tammy de Klerk & Nicky Rossouw

"The Regulars" in Windhoek. The primary objective of “The Regulars” and their original workshop-theatre musical show is to raise funds and awareness for the conservation of desert-adapted lions in Namibia. The Desert Lion Project would like to thank Bianca, Byron, Tammy and Nicky for this fantastic initiative.

Tammy de Klerk, Nicky Rossouw, Bianca Green, Byron Bure (D Heinrich)

Nicky Rossouw, Tammy de Klerk, Bianca Green (photo: Dirk Heinrich)

Tammy de Klerk, Byron Bure, Nicky Rossouw (photo: Dirk Heinrich) Bianca Green, Tammy de Klerk, Byron Bure, Nicky Rossouw (D Heinrich)

4 Dec 2013. Camera-trap 2. Images of a male African wildcat and several spotted hyaenas were retrieved from a camera-trap in the lower Obab River. Spotted hyaenas are generally not known to occur this far west along the Uniab River and its tributaries. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) moved northwards and reached the Hoanib Floodplain.

3 Dec 2013. Camera-trap. More information became available from one of the camera-traps in the lower Obab River (see photo: below left) confirming that Xpl-73 “Rosh” is still in the area. An adult male leopard was also captured on the camera.

2 Dec 2013. Xpl-68. The “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) left the Torra Bay and Terrace Bay area and moved to the lower Hunkap River.

1 Dec 2013. Movement Updates.

For current news go to NEWS.