The greater Stettyn area is comprised of four farms bordering the eastern slopes of the Klein Drakenstein Mountains. From high altitude fynbos to low lying Karoo shrub lands, the expanse of the Stettyn area covers nearly 7000 hectares, of which only 800 hectares are cultivated.
During a recent survey by The Cape Leopard Trust (CLT), it was established that there are at least three leopards roaming the area. Throughout the duration of the two-year survey, trip cameras were positioned at various locations in the veld.
What caught our eye was the number of other animals that were captured by the cameras. As most of these animals are nocturnal, it was difficult to establish how many species of animals appeared in the area. This has prompted the landowners to undertake an ongoing study to establish what wild animals reside in the greater Stettyn area.
After months of BM5 (a leopard named Sheeva) not making an appearance, a leopard showed up on one of the cameras. But it was not Sheeva (BM5), it was a new big male leopard, Scar (BM20) that had been moving around Sheeva’s territory. Adjacent to Sheeva’s territory, a very old leopard named Oupa (BM7) had claimed his territory. Oupa unfortunately died of natural causes a few months ago at the ripe old age of 14, leaving his vast territory vacant. This is the reason for Scar appearing on Sheeva’s hunting ground. Over the months to come it will be interesting to see who will take over Oupa’s territory and who will claim the Stettyn Mountain as their own.