Mavara


Up in the canopy of the acacia, shrouded and spotted by the fallacious shade of arborial twilight, was the female leopard. Up in the mottled murk of branch and leaf, was the baboon, also. There, Mavara, of the golden eyes and powerful paw, gleaming fang and snarling maw, boxed the shadows, defending her kill – and as the guests were to later learn – her cub, from the shrieking attack. The half full leopard warily guarded her half empty baboon carcass as the onslaught continued: the living primate waxing vocal in Shakesperian outrage at the flagrantly displayed carcass and ancient, mortal enemy. Jumping from branch in an apoplexy eventually exhausted, the baboon harassed the leopard for the better part of an hour, until recognising its futility and retreating, troop in tow…

Mavara is a familiar sight in the Anabezi environs, although not in camp itself (that territory belongs to Ana and her cubs) but from the Kaunda Ruins to the Kulefu Channel plains, she can be spotted, ever relaxed in the presence of vehicles both during the day and at night. She is identified by her golden eyes and the curious spot formation above her eyebrows, which resembles the silhouette of buffalo horns, and which gave rise to the English translation of her Gova name: Spot. This incident, however, was the first sighting of her cub. Given the incredibly high density of leopard in the area (Lawrence’s Guests alone saw 9 over 4 days) it will be interesting to see how the territories develop with the newest generation of juveniles and cubs…

All in all, just another day in the paradise of the Lower Zambezi National Park…

Witnessed by Guide Lawrence Mazele, retold by Tara Vivian-Neal

Image of Mavara’s Cub by Dr. Gail Walkinshaw (Anabezi Guest)

Check Availability