bettel

Mara cheetahs

290 posts in this topic

39 minutes ago, Lyss said:

Update on the coalition of 5. All 5 have been seen live on safariLive just about 2 minutes ago. They are all slightly limping, but all are together again. Such happy news. Footage of the 5 Musketeers back together. This is of the live drive that is happening right now. Scott Dyson, the guide with the cheetah is in a spotty reception area, and so the sightings may be brief. Tristan Dicks, is in the Sabi Sands with a resident leopard named Hosana. In case you wondered. :)

You made my day!!!! I can't stop smiling! Thanks a lot for the update.

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Thank goodness!!  Thank you for the update @Lyss!

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Amani's two daughters have just made Nat Geo Wild and Safari Live:  Here

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 @amybatt Yes, that was awesome watching them on Nat Geo!!  Happy to know that they are doing well.  I first photographed Amani in 2013 when Imani was a cub, and have seen her several times since then. I last saw her in the south end of the Mara in December last year with two cubs several miles north-east of the Tanzanian border, east of the bridge.  She was very protective of her cubs and immediately took them down to the river bed where they could not be seen.  She could well have gone over the border into Tanzania.

 

I will be in the Mara next month accompanying a professional photographer from California and also return back in January.....sooo looking forward to seeing them again!

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This is a photo from back in January 2013 when I photographed Amani and Imani.  It was just our vehicle and the cheetahs for around one hour undisturbed.  We just stayed put while safari vehicles passed us, not seeing the cheetahs in the ravine below!

DSC_0776.png

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@serendipityntravel this is Amani the following year, Feb 2014, with her daughter Karembo.  It looks like she got right back to having cubs once the ones in your photo went independent!  I think the other photo I attached is of those three (a female and two males?) when they were still together in Feb 2014.

DSCN0986_edited_3.jpg

DSCN2176.JPG

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@amybatt  It was two males and a female (Imani).  Thank you for sharing the 2015 photos....I did not see any of that family in 2014.

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In post #268 of this thread, @douglaswise asked some pointed questions about whether the Mara Cheetah Project's  "costs required to run the Project can be justified by any likely conservation gains. "

 

Nothing wrong with applying critical thinking to such questions, and all conservation projects should be able to answer such queries.

 

I recently saw mention of the following peer-reviewed publication on MCP's Facebook page (along with a neat video of the 5-male coalition):

 

"We are excited that our latest research on human-wildlife conflict has just been published in Ecology and Evolution: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ece3.3565/full

Human-carnivore conflict is a primary driver of carnivore declines and can inflict substantial costs on local communities. Resolving and mitigating these conflicts is therefore of primary concern to carnivore conservation and human livelihoods.

Using data from 820 interviews we looked at both husbandry practices and environmental variables to help predict attacks on livestock enclosures and with that we made a map of areas where attacks on bomas are most likely to occur. We are hoping that the results will be used by management and community members to prioritise mitigation efforts to minimise human-wildlife conflict.

This study was carried out in collaboration with the Mara Lion Project and was kindly funded by the African Wildlife Foundation, Basecamp Foundation Kenya- BCFK and numerous private donors."

 

While their conclusions (see 'Discussion' section) are not earth-shattering revelations, to me they seem worthwhile and an incremental improvement of the state of knowledge.

 

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Thanks for locating and sharing the above research paper @offshorebirder 

 

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Take a look on Twitter for Mara Cheetah Project's post today on the five musketeers.  They took down something huge last night and are all laying around with ENORMOUS bellies.  It's funny to see all five so bloated, but it's also a testament to how successful they are as a team of hunters!  I asked MCP what they thought they might have eaten and the replied that it was likely a very large wildebeest.

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There have been an online drama in Masai Mara for the last 24 hours.

 

Musketeers cornered a Myale's son from previous litter (Mugi) and keep biting and harassing him :(

 

Here is the video from Safari Live 

 

And here is the post from Mara Mery Cheetah project:

https://www.facebook.com/MaraMeruCheetahProject/

 

"For single nomadic cheetah males, life becomes difficult when they come across cheetah coalitions. A group of 5 males has been controlling a large area, where single males had been observed before comfortably staying for days and weeks. Yesterday evening we left the Five males resting, but today they split. While one of them was spotted alone intensively calling, three other males were holding Mugi few kilometers away. Three males surrounded the bush, where Mugi was hiding, periodically trying to approach him. Attempts to attack Mugi were followed by a chain reaction in which all males were involved. Fights between males can be violent, and lead to injuries and even death of singletons. Two out of three attackers were targeting Mugi's anogenital area biting it. Mugi was nimble enough to avoid severe injures, but could not escape. Several months ago, we observed very similar behavior of this male coalition when they have been holding a female Nashipai. She managed to escape at night, and there is a hope that Mugi will be able to get away without harm this night."

 

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I've found those updates from Mara Cheetah very interesting, @bettel!  The update this morning was that they were going after Mugi again today but that Mugi was putting up more of a fight it seemed.  And the one male of the five, who was seen off on his own yesterday, was the same one that went missing (and we presumed dead) back in October (posted above).  When last seen this wandering male was heading back towards where his companions were.  I wish I could better understand this coalition and how they've lasted so long.  I hope researchers are getting a lot of information out of this experience!

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@amybatt SafariLive said that the missing male was away mating yesterday and day before. And when I was in Mara and talked to them, they believed that he was lost also because of mating previous time. He is one of two leaders of the coalition so it seems when they find a female in heat, they fight, then everybody else leaves, he stays and then he tries to find them all :) 

Edited by bettel

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