Tag Archive for African Elephant

Warming up in Kruger | Sirheni

We arrived at Sirheni on Christmas day and were allocated to bungalow no 13.

It was quite hot and very humid, but lucky for us a breeze soon started to blow and the temperature dropped to a lovely 20C-something. We had a look around the camp, which is quite amazing. It’s full of trees and very green. It has two bird hides, one was in front of our bungalow. There’s a photo in my Morning coffee post.

There was lots of water in the dam. Besides birds, we saw crocs and hippos at Sirheni.

Sirheni Bush Camp

The next morning we woke up to a slight drizzle. We jumped into our car and set off to Punda Maria where we had fish and chips – not as good as Shingwedzi’s – under the baobab tree.

Nice and cool today

On our way up to Punda, we spotted a Bronze-winged Courser (thanks for the ID, Mary)

This was the start of a very productive day – sighting wise.

Hmm. Ground Hornbill.

Erm … ungrounded Ground Hornbill with snack

Common Duiker

White-backed vulture

White-backed vultures

After lunch we drove further north to Pafuri. Just after we turned right to the S63 we spotted ….

One-legged chicken

One-legged chicken!

Crested Guineafowl

Followed by feetless chicken (sorry)

Crested Guineafowl and chick

And finally Crested Guineafowl and chick!

There were about 6 of them and we counted 3 or 4 chicks. There’re a bit difficult to see. The last time we saw these elusive birds was in 2005 on the Mahonie loop, near Punda Maria.

The Pafuri area was very beautiful and lush. We had a lovely drive and also spotted Black-crowned Chagra, Tsessebe, Helmeted Guineafowl, Yellow-billed Oxpeckers, Bateleur, Nyala, Baboons, Vervet monkeys, Lappet-faced vulture, elephants and a chameleon.  Back at Sirheni we saw Giant Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, Malachite Kingfisher and Bee-eaters.

Giraffe

What a day!

To be continued. Soon!
(More Kruger park reports)

Warming up in Kruger – Mooiplaas

The drive took us to Mooiplaas waterhole on the S50.
Mooiplaas Waterhole

It was almost midday, so light conditions weren’t too good for photography, but lots of animals were hanging around. We saw quite a large herd of Tsessebe. This one here was galloping all over the place.

Tsessebe

Storks were foraging for insects and earthworms I think.

Stork

Stork

Zebra

Meet Daisy.

Cape Buffalo

Daisy giving me the evil eye.

Cape Buffalo

This tusker needed a scratch

African Elephant

Tsessebe having lunch

Tsessebe

Speaking of lunch. We had lunch at Mopani restaurant, where the Carmine Bee-eaters gave an arial show. We spent quite some time watching them. Got a whole series of little blurry flying things. Managed to snap this one though.

Carmine Bee-eater

Warming up in Kruger (2.1)

We woke up early on Thursday the 23rd. Even though we were still quite tired, we had a long drive ahead (Mopani) and wanted to get an early start. The weather was lovely and we left Skukuza with great expectations 😉
Our first full day in the park … what would we see?

Would we see sable, leopard in tree, lion …?

Sable Antelope

Sable Antelope

Leopard

Leopard in Tree

Lion

… uhm … yes.

We came across the herd of Sable Antelope on the H1-2, about 45 minutes after we left Skukuza. I think there must have been around 15 antelope in the herd. There were quite a few young ones too. I was mega excited about this super sighting and clicked away.  But they stayed in the bush, so I couldn’t get a clear shot. Not to worry, we got to see the elusive Sable Antelope again. Yay.

Several cars whizzed by, unaware of the uniqueness of this sighting. Just as we were about to drive on, we were flagged down by kindred spirits who told us about the leopard in tree a few kilos further on. Our smiles got even bigger and we drove on, windows open, enjoying the lovely weather, bird sounds and cool African breeze until we spotted 5 cars on the side of the road. Yep. LIT. (leopard in tree)

Leopard in Tree

We stayed with the lazy leopard for about 15 minutes, and then drove on towards our first pit stop of the day: Tshokwane Picnic Spot, where we arrived at 7 for a quick stop and stretch.

.. to be continued ..