Wildest Wild: Our Top 10 SA Bush videos of the past year

2016-08-05 12:30 - Louzel Lombard
Post a comment 0


Living in SA, we're pretty used to seeing a daily dose of incredible wildlife sightings. Naturally, it's because the world-renowned Kruger National Park, one of Africa's largest and richest natural wildlife reserves, sits right in our midsts. 

The Kruger spans two South African provinces and three southern African countries. It's big, nearly 20 000 square kilometres big. And an estimated 2 000 lions roam its diverse landscapes. 

Which explains why nearly all of the most-watched wildlife sightings videos shot in South African over the past year included lion action. 

From the crazy, surreal sightings showing a pride of lions taking down a buffalo amid a convoy of parked vehicles, to a video showing a new lone lion mother walking beside her tiny cub - lions make for the best SA wildlife footage. 

If you've forgotten in what an incredible country we live in, we've taken a trip down our wildest memory track, to bring you to most-loved wildlife sightings of the past year. 

Strap in and keep your binoculars close - it's going to be a wild ride. 

Our first stop on our game drive down 'memory track' is in the Kruger National Park, on the H1-4 near Olifants rest camp in Satara. 

At first glance, the herd of Cape Buffalo crossing the road to a nearby waterhole seems like a normal sighting... But suddenly, the buffalo turn in their tracks and stampede in opposite direction, crashing into a white sedan nearby and almost tipping it over



The reason for the buffaloes' sudden panic is unclear, but then a different perspective sheds light on their reason for running. Another video taken from the opposite side of the road showed how two lions launched a surprise attack on the herd as soon as they've crossed the road, causing them to dart back into the convoy of cars. 

The video was recorded by Penny Osborne on the H1-4 near Olifants in the Kruger National Park. Check it out: 

Driving on on our memory track, we come across perhaps our favourite celebrity conservationist - the flaming redhead, Prince Harry. 

We loved Prince Harry, even more, when we learnt that he was part of a rhino poaching shoot-out in August last year, capturing eight poachers in a group effort across the Kruger in one day. 

He is actively fighting wildlife crime, but also makes time to pose with baby rhinos post the heroic poaching clamp-down. 



Our next stop is on the  H7 road between Orpen Gate and Satara Camp in the Kruger, where a magnitude of vehicles are parked. The clicks from the onlookers' cameras are audible... 

And then, we see what the fuss is all about! Two HUGE male lions chase and take down a kudu right there, on the road!

Carrie Dunford, a British researcher working in South Africa, captures a spectacular series of images of the kill... 


(Photo: Carrie Dunford)



More footage of the epic kill emerges after Carrie's photos are shared, and we are struck by the sheer power of the lions when looking at the kill from every different angle. 

 

Exhausted by the adrenaline rush from witnessing this epic lion kill, we drive on down our memory track, and stumble across one of our favourite Kruger moments - when Kruger lover Nico Henning captured a pride of 25 lions causing perhaps the most welcomed roadblock in the country... 

(Photo: Nico Henning)



We remember another epic Kruger moment, when photographer Siobain Shead spotted and snapped 15 Kruger lionesses sipping water side by side. 

The sighting happened at Ingwe Donga, along the S1 route in the Kruger. 


(Photo: Siobain Shead)



While we're all for the Big Cat sightings in the Kruger, we're delighted to find on our trip down our wildlife memory track footage of a black mamba swallowing a mouse whole



It just shows that the largest and smallest creatures are able to shock and surprise us. 

We drive on our memory track, to find another small creature surprising us. In a true David and Goliath occurrence, a porcupine killed a leopard with several fatal stabs with its quills!


(Photo: Marga Stevens‎)



Next, we stop to witness one of SA's most endangered predators in action. There might only be 450 African wild dogs left in South Africa - but they're a ferocious and powerful bunch if footage of a 15-strong pack killing a kudu on Orpen Road in the Kruger is anything to go by.

Although incredible and natural, the video is certainly not for sensitive viewers - so consider yourself warned. 

    



Driving on on our memory track, we're delighted to stumble upon another Big Cat sighting. This time, is a cheetah stalking a herd of impala right next to the H7 road near Satara in the Kruger

The footage shows how the herd becomes skittish, as the cheetah explodes into a full chase, finally nabbing a male impala and slowly choking it to death - perfection in nature if we've ever seen it!



Our next memory sighting is a little less perfect than we expect in nature - when a buffalo made an unexpected escape from the jaws of death after already being eaten on! 

This hunt was captured at Mala Mala Private Game Reserve in the Greater Kruger enclosure. 

  



No wildlife throwback would be complete with a gentle giant African elephant sighting. And we adore this trip down our memory track to the H3 road near the Berg-en-Dal rest camp, where a baby ellie was spotted chasing around birds!



Speaking of babies, we also can't have a complete wildlife throwback without mentioning footage of this new lion mother in the Kruger. Removing herself from her pride for the first few months of her cub's life, she is seen carrying her tiny cub over the road in her powerful jaw - the epitome of motherly love in the wild



Outside of SA, there were also come crazy sightings over the past year. Who can forget the Kgalagadi lionesses licking raindrops from campers' tents!? 


And when staff members in the Namiri Plains of the Serengeti in Tanzania were trapped in their tents after 10 lions brought down and devoured a buffalo right in their midst



What to read next on Traveller24

WATCH: South Africans pay tribute to Ranger heroes on #WorldRangerDay

#WorldRangerDay: ‘Doing what I do has made me a better man’

Southern Safari: 5 Honeymoons straight out of the movies