The first cheetah sighting of the year, the arrival of new calves across the Reserve, and a reacquaintance with The Western Pride: November at Xigera has been a month of unforgettable sightings. As the rainy season fast approaches, the heat has been lifting across the Moremi Game Reserve, offering relief for both the predators and prey that reside here. The Delta’s rescinding waters have also given way to oases of marine life as fish traps have emerged across the plains. The result has been a flourishing feeding ground for our vibrant birdlife. With this new lease of life that the anticipation for the impending rains has brought, discover some of the most exciting moments captured on our safari tours this November.

Elephant as dusk in Botswana

Photo by Oratile Gotshajwang

November was an exceptional month for big cat sightings. After a couple of months absent from our tours, the Western Pride have made their presence known at Xigera once more. Found relaxing in the withdrawing heat, the pride enjoyed the cooler breezes washing over our reserve whilst their prey fed unassumingly just across the plains.  

Lion cubs of the Western Pride

Photo by Oratile Gotshajwang

The excitement brought forth by the return of The Western Pride was maximised by the presence of their numerous, bounding cubs. Playing in the grasslands, which have already become increasingly sumptuous and verdant from the few showers that have blessed us already this month, the cubs can be seen thriving in their adolescent years.

Lion cubs playing

Photo by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe

Alongside the return of The Western Pride, November saw the first cheetah sighting of 2022. Known to be solitary animals, and one of the shier, more rarely seen of the big cats, this spotting was one of euphoric chance. It occurred on a very hot afternoon in an attempt to escape any direct facing of the sun. Arriving upon a herd of lechwes, the guide of the tour noticed their agitated and alert behaviour. It was at the point of their focus that the cheetah was spotted, nestled amidst the grasses.

cheetah in grass

Cheetah and prey

Photos by Oratile Gotshajwang

With the rainier months commencing in December, the Moremi Game Reserve witnesses an influx of new life. New buds and shoots begin to spring up across the plains, and coupled with their arrival, are new-born calves and cubs. Sophie, one of our resident leopards, was recently spotted with her cub who, although appearing injured, has made an excellent recovery.

Leopard, Sophie, and cub

Photo by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe

New leopard cubs have also been spotted near to our camp, their loveable and charming personas sparking excitement amongst us all.

Leopard cub

Photo by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe

But these special moments are not reserved for our leopards alone; November has also welcomed some inspiring and endearing moments from our herd animals. Such moments are demonstrated below with the arrival of new zebra and red lechwe calves across the Moremi Game Reserve - two herd animals equal in their majesty.

Red lechwe and calf

Zebra and calf

Photos by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe

As we enter the final month of 2022 and anticipate the rainy season ahead, we look forward to many more wonderful moments here at Xigera both from the wildlife and the exceptional environment in which we sit.