On our (Ulinda and family) first cache hunt / seek, being introduced to geo-caching by “ITBRL” and family (great times and memories), I couldn’t help but notice how the whole scene of a family scratching around, under rocks and tree logs, turning everything upside down looking for these hidden treasures, reminded me of one of my favorite animals, the Honey Badger / Ratel / Ulinda (Zulu). Mellivora capensis
The ratel is very rare in KwaZulu-Natal, limited mainly to the Bushveld regions and Coast lowlands of the north-east.
The diet includes mainly small animals: scorpions, spiders, mice, lizards, snakes, millipedes, centipedes, and insects (including bee larvae and honey).
Ratels appear to be solitary, occasionally being recorded in groups of two or three
No information is available on reproduction in KwaZulu-Natal. Elsewhere in Southern Africa breeding does not appear to be seasonal and litters of two have been recorded.
In some parts of KwaZulu-Natal ratels are killed for use in traditional medicine and their body parts are used as protective charms or as charms for hunting dogs, because they are very rare the killing of ratels has led to local extinctions. They are occasionally also caught in traps set for problem animals, or are accidentally poisoned.
PS. This lovely creature is one tough mother given a wide berth of respect (all deserved) by the majority of the animal kingdom.
This cache can be reached either by foot or mountain bikes. Make sure to take your binoculars. There is plenty of game & birds. Best time to do this is early mornings. Happy hunting!
The waypoints of a close by parking area and the two starting points of the trail are included.
Startup cache – TB Buggie, Crocodile, Hippo, Note book & pencil.