New Herd of 53 Cape Buffalo Released onto Welgevonden Game Reserve

Welgevonden Game Reserve is pleased to announce the introduction of a new herd of 53 Cape Buffalo.

The herd is in exceptional condition and is comprised of the following:

  • 23 cows
  • 14 bulls
  • 8 heifer calves
  • 7 bull calves

Resolution to purchase the herd was made at a Special Meeting of Welgevonden members on the 26th July 2018. Following this decision was an extensive series of animal disease tests, as prescribed by legislation. All 53 buffalo were deemed fit for relocation.

This test phase provided the opportunity to boost the general condition of the herd with supplementary feeding – the condition of sourveld graze at Welgevonden during this time of the year is poor and introduction was delayed to coincide with the summer rains.

“Buffalo are an iconic species in the Big 5 assemblage and although there were a few bulls on the Reserve, the breeding herd dynamic was absent” says CEO, Shaun McCartney.

Buffalo are bulk grazers and significantly influence vegetative structure. They are known to convert long grasslands into short, grassy environments which is conducive to other grazers. This localised grazing impact, along with the nutrient input of their droppings and breaking soil surface through hoofing action, is aligned with the expansion of grazing lawns on Welgevonden.

The Reserve is fast moving from a fire-driven system to one that is driven by herbivores.

Frank Vogel, owner of Mhondoro Game Lodge, initiated the purchase of the herd at a favourable rate and facilitated a loan to Welgevonden Members.

Welgevonden hopes you enjoy the buffalo herd and that they provide game viewing pleasure.