This Valentine’s Day, we are looking to help our guests feel the spirit of romance by offering an opportunity to seek out not only the most well known faces of the “Big Five,” but also some of the more affectionate souls of the region’s lesser known animal species, with a tribute to “The Romantic Seven”.
Through the Lodge’s on-site Discovery Centre and guided game drive excursions, guests may learn about any of The Romantic Seven – a list inspired by the insights of the Lodge’s Resident Naturalist Oli Dreike and the expert Four Seasons safari guides.
During the week of Valentine’s Day, information on The Romantic Seven will be shared with all guests at Four Seasons Safari Lodge, with the list featuring:
Weaver Birds – In the green season,male weaver birds will attempt to attract a mate by building intricate hanging nests out of grass or twigs. Once completed, the female will examine the nest inside and out and will choose the most skilled architect as her mate.
- Lovebirds – With beautiful green feathers, these mini parrots are seldom found alone. Their name derives from the strong, monogamous bond between the male and female, who stay close to each other and are frequently seen preening each other’s feathers.
- Klipspringers – This small antelope is almost always found in a pair and is frequently sighted in the grounds of Four Seasons Safari Lodge. The strong and enduring, monogamous bond between the male and female means they rarely stray more than a few metres from each other, with one keeping watch while the other feeds on low grasses and foliage. Klipspringers usually remain together until one of the animals dies.
- Dik-diks– Also of the antelope family, dik-diks remain in their pairs for approximately two thirds of the time, marking their territories with dung piles, where the male covers the female’s dung with its own. Fierce to defend their territories, dik-diks are thought to have become monogamous through response to predation, yet there is evidence that males, but not females, will seek extra-pair mating should the opportunity arise.
Lions – When a lioness is in season, the lion will remain by her side and they may mate as often as two to four times per hour for up to six days. In this time known as the “honeymoon period,” the lions will not eat and the male becomes very protective over the female, not allowing others near.
- Hornbills – To ensure the safety and protection of her laid eggs, the female hornbill will voluntarily remain inside the cavity of a tree, allowing the male to seal her and her clutch inside using mud, while he seeks out food to bring back, delivering this to his partner through a small hole made in the mud.
- Giraffe – To earn the right to mate with a female giraffe in oestrus, male giraffes will compete to try and knock each other out, swinging their necks to violently clash with their opponent and using their horns to cause injury in what can become brutal fights – sometimes to the death.