The Tamboti female (Leopards of MalaMala)

Portrait of the Tamboti female - Chris Hall

Portrait of the Tamboti female - Chris Hall

Date of Birth: November 2007

Mother: Ngoboswan female

Father: Bicycle Crossing male

Litters: None

Family tree featuring the Tamboti Female

Family tree featuring the Tamboti Female

A small leopard with a big heart - Gary Hill

A small leopard with a big heart - Gary Hill

Showing off her eyes - Gary Hill

Showing off her eyes - Gary Hill

Identity features of the Tamboti Female

Identity features of the Tamboti Female

General:

The Tamboti Female has struggled to produce any cubs despite numerous attempts. One of the first instances that we recorded her mating was in May 2011. It was an unbelievable event. The Airstrip male was mating with the Western female, and the Tamboti female had been attracted to the area. The Western female was tolerant of the young Tamboti female’s presence, and the two females took turns to mate with the Airstrip male! This behavior is very uncommon and has scarcely been documented. The irony is that when the daughter of the Kikilezi female showed up when the Tamboti female was mating with the same male a few months after, the Tamboti female did not want the daughter of the Kikilezi female anywhere near and was very aggressive toward her.

The Tamboti female has mated most often with her half brother, the Airstrip Male. This pair has been seen mating on numerous occasions, and these sightings have provided some spectacular viewing. Her next partner of choice has been the Princess Alice Pans male, a curious combination since the bulky male is almost twice the size of the petite female. The Newington male and the West Street male have also been mated with the Tamboti female, interesting since neither of these males were territorial at the time. Choosing multiple partners is perhaps a ploy to increase her chances of falling pregnant, and is also a good tactic that will confuse the fatherhood of any cubs born. These males all reign within the Tamboti female’s territory, and they might all have a vested interest in her cubs despite the chances that it may not be one of their offspring.

Her spot pattern in very symetrical - Gary Hill

Her spot pattern in very symetrical - Gary Hill

The Tamboti female in October 2012

The Tamboti female in October 2012

A huge gash to her thigh in mid-2012 was yet another setback she overcame - Gary Hill

A huge gash to her thigh in mid-2012 was yet another setback she overcame - Gary Hill

The Tamboti female as a young cub - Andrew Bachelor

The Tamboti female as a young cub - Andrew Bachelor

The fifth and final offspring of the Ngoboswan female, the beautiful Tamboti female is very photogenic and is immediately loved by those fortunate enough to view her. She had a brother that was killed by lions in mid 2008. Her career has been marred by incidents involving hyenas and lions, and it is testament to her character that she has managed to overcome these altercations, sometimes incurring serious injuries along the way. She is a skilled and proficient hunter and we are sure she will do well as a mother. After the West Street Bridge was destroyed in the floods of January 2012, she shifted her territory further to the west since she can no longer enjoy the easy river crossing. With the reconstruction of the bridge well underway, it is an exciting prospect to see how she will respond when it is completed, as the daughter of the Kikilezi female has since adopted the abandoned portion of her territory!

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