Timbo Afrika has funded and established an accredited PhD level field study, focussing on the ecology of leopards and hyenas of the Tuli. This includes the highly endangered Kalahari icon, the brown hyena. We invite our guests to participate in monitoring activities and field observations with our head of research in Tuli, Sander Vissia who is completing a PhD at Wageningen University in Holland.
The research carried out at Koro River Camp is unique in the fact that it is conducted in a dynamic, forever changing and carnivore rich open system. With an abundance of resident leopard, spotted hyena and brown hyena, returning lions from Northern Tuli Game Reserve and adjacent South Africa and cross-border nomadic packs of wild dogs it is an exciting area.
Leopard and brown hyena identification and distribution
Based on a camera trap survey we identify individual animals in the area, to work out densities and territory maps. Every leopard has its unique spot pattern so based on camera trap photos it is relatively easy to identify these cats. Brown hyena can be identified by unique stripe patterns on their legs as well as bite marks or tears on the ears.
Large carnivore scat analysis
Due to our extensive fieldwork we have built up a library of hair identikits allowing us to identify prey species found in predator scat. Each antelope, rodent or other mammal has unique hair patterns when viewed under a microscope so we can learn more about diet preferences, hunting techniques and feeding behaviour of the larger predators in the Koro concession.
Leopard movement and dispersal
We are presently applying for permission to collar some of the leopards we have in the area to provide more accurate information of the movement, distribution, habitat use and feeding patterns of the leopards, as well as the interaction behaviour with both spotted and brown hyena.
The Machangulo Private Nature & Marine Reserve forms part of the Ponta Do Ouro Partial Marine Reserve what stretches no less than three miles into the ocean. As our beaches are home to the great Loggerhead and Leatherback turtles who nest and hatch, we are active participants in monitoring their nests and hatchlings. You can visit us and learn all about them and if you’re lucky you might see them swimming in the surf!