21 December 2010

Carnivore Update

Carnivores, carnivores, carnivores. Most of our research is facilitated with radio-collared animals, but we take advantage of opportunistic sightings of uncollared animals whenever we can. Hyenas have really been helpful lately, lying along the roads in the early evening and letting us get very close to follow them as they hunt. The hyenas are quite predictable, lying along the routes the wildlife use to reach the river to get a drink at night, when all the people and livestock are safely inside their bomas. Uncollared lion sightings have also been surprisingly common. Even though none of the 3 new males who have immigrated to the study area wears a collar, we have had no trouble finding them at least once a week. Of course, being able to find receptive females makes it much easier to find interested males. The new males have been seen mating or courting at least three lioness we regularly follow. (written by David Christianson)