Suni-Ridge is in the midst of a unique birding area with over 400 species recorded in surrounding areas. This beautiful European Bee Eater has a limited range in South Africa where it homes for summer months after migrating from Europe. It is one of the many 350 species of birds recorded at our Sanctuary. Their impact on bee populations is known to not be very significant being only 1% of worker bees where they feed as they also feed on other insects, during flight. Of interest is that they remove the sting from the bee before eating it, by hitting the bee on a hard surface.
Good news is that our wildlife emergency medical treatment fund has successfully enabled us to treat a severe injury on the lower back leg of one of our wildebeest (Ngu) He somehow cut his leg and a wound of about 7 cm needed urgent attention.
A veterinary assistant darted him with an antibiotic in his rump and this began a healing process. Thereafter we have been able to approach him and while he enjoys the feed that we provide and layout for him, we manage to spray the wound from a distance. We have bought a number of bottles of F10 Germicidal Wound Spray that we have used. This topical treatment has been important to prevent infection and fly strike(maggots) from entering the wound.
Thankfully the injury has now healed and closed almost completely. Unfortunately, the damage has affected the strength of his suspensory ligament – above his back hoof, and he may continue to limp. However, he presently grazes happily and he is not presenting any symptoms of weight loss. He is still able to run, lie down, and walk distances without distress.
As we progress into 2021 we hope to raise sufficient funding to build our long-awaited treatment boma. Your ongoing support means the world to us and of course to the wild that we help protect.
We found this tiny, juvenile Eastern Hinge back tortoise (Kinixys zombensis) crossing the exit road on our Reserve and placed it safely in the bush.
It is one of the many Red Data species found on Suni-ridge Reserve. It is recorded to be vulnerable, considered rare and the species is registered on Cites appendix 2. It has a number of threats outside protected areas where its habitat has been removed for agriculture. The female would lay up to two eggs in April and they hatch in September. The hatchling will weigh between 8 to 10 grams. The Eastern Hinge Back Tortoise is omnivorous and feeds on plants and invertebrates.
We are pleased to ensure that it has a protected habitat at Suni-Ridge.
Caring for injured or orphaned wildlife is a challenge. But with the new facility we are developing much more will be accomplished.
Sadly a baby wildebeest was recently orphaned was injured.
We located the baby wildebeest in the bush this afternoon and the zebra were around him showing concern. He saw me and came up to me, somehow he knows we are trying to help him and he kept approaching us. We decided to try to hold him by his little horns again, and managed to do so.
The baby was quite docile so I inspected the wound. It needed to be cleaned which we attended to. It was fortunate that we were able to find him, without treatment he would have died an agonizing death. It would have been safer for him to have been homed inside a boma and should it rain, inside a stable.
We were eventually able to home him in a temporary boma but this was an emergency measure – we are now now developing a secure rehab facility.
We will now establish a safe rehab boma and stable for orphaned and/ or injured wildlife. We also aim to secure timeous professional assistance for future wildlife in need. Any support for this project would be greatly appreciated.
An urgent appeal to all who care: Please support our drought relief appeal Zululand is experiencing the worst drought in 20 years. The entire Province of KZN has been red flagged because of the drought. Rivers have dried up and virtually no rain has fallen during the past months in our area at False Bay Park.
Any amount however big or small towards feeding the wildlife at our Sanctuary would be greatly appreciated. Please click below to donate through PayPal. Thank you for caring!
A bag of game pellets costs R250.00 (18.11 USD)
One bale of Lucerne R105.00 (7.61 USD)
We have been doing our best to help our wildlife through the drought and we have to supplement food for our wildlife in our Sanctuary. There is no longer grazing and very little browsing available. Nyala graze 30% and browse 70% depending on availability of foliage and grass. Wildebeest are bulk grazers and zebra each need 10kg of hay/grass per day. Although we bring in grass from areas where there is no grazing, we now need to supplement this with Lucerne and game pellets. The female antelope that are pregnant especially need more food to tide them through.
Any support you may be able to offer – however big or small – would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you for caring!
We had a 5 day battle in our Sanctuary, to save a baby wildebeest (featured as newborn, in the video ” Hello World”) Sadly he was injured when he and his friend also a little bull, were forced out of the breeding herd by the territorial bull.
Sadly although we tried our best to help him, eventually having to place him in a boma for treatment, he did not make it. We would like to thank all for their support.
Conservation and the protection of biodiversity is of the utmost importance to Janet and Rob Cuthbertson. Suni-Ridge Sand Forest Park Environmental Rehabilitation Centre was established to expand Janet and Rob’s focus of environmental concern into the surrounding area and local communities. Continue reading
Animal rescue centre for orphaned or injured young wildlife.
Currently, many orphaned wild animals are left for “nature to take care of herself”, which means that any baby wild animal will surely die being unable to fend for itself.
Our goal is to give orphaned or injured wildlife the care & survival skills needed, so that they can return to the wild
There is a dire need in Maputaland for an animal rescue centre/ wildlife orphanage. Suni-Ridge Sand Forest Park is presently establishing a facility that will provide a haven for rescued and orphaned animals. Support for this will be important as it would only be with those who share our concern that we would be able to establish this important facility.
The project will form part of a community outreach program that will encourage awareness about the protection of wildlife.
It is essential that we protect our wildlife from poaching and hunting. One might understand the terrible “need” if it was driving by hunger for the poverty-stricken table, but in most cases, it’s because of the bush-meat trade or other profit-driven reason.
If things carry on as they are now, there won’t be any wildlife left to see. This needs to stop.
KHOLA is the Zulu word for Believe.
We believe we can make a difference!
The KHOLA Campaign is for people, businesses and organisations who share our belief that wildlife reserves should be bona fide safe havens for wild animals, where they are not used as a resource “for their own protection”.
Below is a copy of the letter that Janet sent to a friend about this tragic event. Further down, you can also read the letter about little KHOLA, the foal that was born after Old Boy’s death. Khola is the inspiration behind the KHOLA Sponsor Ad Campagin. Continue reading
Wildlife Art “Big Five” prints by Janet Cuthbertson
The prints are on thick import-quality textured paper. 1 of each of the above animal prints are rolled together to form a set of the “Big Five”. This lion below is a closeup and gives you an idea of the quality of the art. Continue reading
Our Bed & Breakfast accommodation is private and cosy, with two cottages to choose from. Guests are welcome to dine at Leopard Walk Lodge’s restaurant.
Our guests can normally enjoy a relatively close encounter with the wildlife. Trips to nearby “Big-Five” wildlife reserves can also be arranged.
We look forward to welcoming you! Continue reading
To help the local communities live in a sustainable way that conserves their cultural and natural heritage, we run a Young Environmental Ambassador’s Leadership Course.
By supporting our ECO-AMBASSADOR Campaign, you are encouraging the leaders of tomorrow to protect their natural and cultural heritage.
The 5-day course is based at Suni-Ridge Wildlife Sanctuary, and strives to achieve the following: Continue reading
Provide a Sanctuary for Wildlife
Illegal hunting, the bushmeat trade, expansion of agriculture and urban settlements are the main causes of this trend.
Our aim is to provide a safe haven where wildlife is protected from being utilised as a resource for the meat trade, hunting or breeding.
From huge to small, rare and endangered species enjoy our protection.
A varied selection of animal species (including 8 red data species) are found here. Suni-Ridge Sand Forest Park Environmental Rehabilitation Centre is named in honour of the diminutive Suni Antelope that is found in our sand forest.
Thanks to your generous support, Suni-Ridge is able to provide a wildlife sanctuary, protect the amazing biodiversity in our region, and to increase the awareness among local communitities of the importance to preserve and protect the environment and their natural heritage. Continue reading
For the first time in history, False Bay dried out completely during the drought that we experienced in our area. False Bay, the northern basin of Lake St. Lucia is an intricate wetland and eco-system within the Isimangaliso Wetland Park World Natural Heritage Site.Continue reading
During 1991 Janet and Rob Cuthbertson purchased a rundown pineapple farm, which today has been rehabilitated into a beautiful and flourishing wildlife reserve.
Our years of effort have at times been exciting, rewarding and often the challenge has been daunting, but the knowledge that we are giving something back to nature is our most worthwhile reward”. ~ Janet and Rob Cuthbertson
Suni-Ridge Sand Forest Park is located in Maputaland, an ecological paradise on the north east coast of South Africa, and enjoys a greater biodiversity than any other area in the country.
“On the left is the sparkling Mozambique coast with the town of Ponta da Oura and on the right, the start of the most beautiful stretch of KwaZulu Natal coastal landscape. A series of lakes strung out like shimmering beads in necklace.
We had just flown across Tembe Elephant Park with its unique watery wilderness, spotting elephant and rhino at waterholes. And ahead of us is the Mkuzi Game Reserve, the up-market Phinda Reserve and the grandeur of the Lubombo Mountains with Swaziland on the other side.”
Jill Gowans, an environmental reporter for the Sunday Tribune, observed this while flying over the Maputaland region. Continue reading