In June of this year I was doing a world in one country tour – which is a 19-day safari starting in Johannesburg and ending in Cape Town. On the KwaZulu Natal section of the tour we visited a lodge called Emdoneni. They have a cat rehabilitation project on their property which is a great highlight for a safari. People bring them injured cats from around the area and they attempt to save and then release them back into the wild. One of the species they have and rehabilitate is the Serval.
It is one of the smaller cat species with a slender build, long legs, a smallish head and large ears… and of course a beautifully spotted coat and short tail. They stand a little taller than an adults knee’ and weigh no more than 13 kilograms. They can run very fast for short periods of time and are very agile…
They will climb trees but are mostly terrestrial. Their diet consists mainly of small mammals like rodents, hares and sometimes birds. It is a very rare thing to see them in the wild.
They hunt mostly at night and blend in very well. Thus Emdoneni offered us a wonderful opportunity to see these lovely cats up close and get a glimpse into their lives. There is a very successful breeding project there too and these cats are all released into the wild when ready. Some of the other species that can be seen at Emdoneni include; Cheetah, Caracal and African Wlid Cats.
– Chantel (Jenman Safaris Guide)