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 Post subject: What did you see during or after the rain?
Unread postPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 10:41 am 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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We had some welcoming rain when we were staying at Shingwezi beginning of Jan 07.

We went for a drive just after the rain stopped and was wonderfully surprised by all the animal activity in the middle of the roads.

There were tortoises everywhere. Where ever there was a puddle of water – there was a tortoise drinking. They were sooo happy. Image
Image
Image
We counted 14!

Image

And here is something weve missed… :redface: Image

Image


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Unread postPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 6:56 pm 
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One of my favourite memories, never repeated, was to have literally hundreds of swallows flying in front of the car, skimming the road surface catching insects. Occurred after rain in April. An amazing sight.

The giant snail is also very impressive and often appears after rain.

Richard


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Unread postPosted: Wed May 16, 2007 3:12 pm 
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Location: Commuting between Ekhurhuleni and Tshwane
Following a rainstorm in December 1998, very close to the causeway accross the Sabie at Skukuza, a spotted hyena suddenly appeared and attacked a herd of impala right next to our Kombi. A fleeing baby impala slipped on the wet road and was snatched up by the hyena just as it hit the road. It was a sighting we'll never forget and of course everytime we are driving on slippery roads in Kruger since we expect to see the same!


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 Post subject: Sighting quality in the rain
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:05 am 
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I'm visiting the park next week and was wondering if anyone has any comments on the quality of their game sighting during AND after the excessive rains.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:12 am 
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Virtual Ranger
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Hi karie123

We visited Pretoriuskop at the beginning of October and it rained for a whole day. During that time we saw very very little - we did see cheetah so it wasn't that bad. Most animals tend to shelter under trees when it rains and the birds also disappear. But after the rains the veld just comes alive and it is an amazing time to be in the bush. You find that frogs and creepy crawlies appear out of nowhere! So basically, don't let rain put you off, it will not last forever.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 10:18 am 
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Quote:
on the quality of their game sighting

As in photographicly? Or as in what you'll see?

Photos will be a little hard as you will obviously have bad light. But still you can make great photos. This cheetah (near Orpen) was lying down in the rain, not happy at all, but when it got up...
Image

Of course being in the right place helped...

But with water available everywhere sightings can become thinner at waterholes.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 10:49 am 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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I spent much of my trip in October in rain and gloom! Still saw quite a bit. Photography can be a pain but the quality of the light can be good even if you could do with a bit more of it.

Even in the rain you can get good shots.

Image

Image

Just two example - more on the website. Too many actually! A bit more sunshine would have been nice.

Things to look for after rain? Giant snail is my favourite! Many other insects and frogs/toads appear. Then if you are lucky, hundreds of swallows skimming the road in front of you feeding off the insects.

Richard


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:08 am 
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Here is the big problem:
After the rain, the animals will stay in the bush. They don't need to go to the dangerous waterholes because there are puddles everywhere that they can drink from. The good thing is that sometimes the come onto the tar roads for warmth and because there are puddles on it. :wink:

I must agree with the rest of you on the matter that it is a great time for photography. I have seen some beautiful pictures of big male lions in the rain and they are simply spectacular.

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 Post subject: Re: Sighting quality in the rain
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:37 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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karie123 wrote:
I'm visiting the park next week and was wondering if anyone has any comments on the quality of their game sighting during the excessive rains.

It is possible to see everything and anything in torrential rain. Personally, I've encountered a lioness lying right in the road in heavy rain; a pack of wild dogs performing a greeting ceremony and then setting off to hunt in torrential rain; and a leopard during a deluge so heavy that at times it was not possible to driver any further, even though we were on a tar road. I could give many more examples.

Animals do not vanish into thin air just because it is raining. Smaller creatures (and some larger ones) may hide in crevices, holes and burrows, but larger ones don't have many options. Sheltering under trees may work initially, but if the rain persists the big drops falling off leaves and branches may penetrate the fur more easily and thus make it less uncomfortable to just stay out in the rain. I once watched a large male leopard trying to keep himself dry in the fork of a very big Jackalberry. No matter which way he turned, some part of him got wet. After 45 minutes he gave up, jumped down and sauntered off through the grass (at that very moment I could see another vehicle approaching, speak of bad luck!).

Rain may also cause animals to move more to keep warm, especially if it isn't very windy.

In sum, don't give up just because it rains! The main impediment to seeing game is reduced visibility due to the rain itself, as well as the wet windshield and windows. I always try to keep at least the windows on the downwind side open. On an open game viewer my main concern is to keep my glasses dry, I therefore always travel with a suitably olive-green southwester.

Johan


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:42 pm 
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Wild about cats wrote:
The good thing is that sometimes the come onto the tar roads for warmth and because there are puddles on it.
. And because walking in the wet veld is a miserable experience.

The best game viewing I've ever had in Kruger by a very wide margin was in February 2000. The sopping wet veld drove the animals on to the roads in droves, and the lack of traffic permitted them to remain there. The sudden transformation of the major tar roads was nothing short of amazing.

Johan


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2007 11:16 am 
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Jeanus wrote:
You are not going to see anything if you are not out there. In other words stay home safe and dry or get out there and have fun - you were born in a waterproof covering.


Have to agree on that Jeanus - Whether i'm going to have sightings or not doesn't matter to me. And i especially love the fresh smell of the veld and soil after it had rained...


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 2:27 pm 
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Hi there, i have just been in the park got back on wednesday ( boo hoo) we had the most incredible sightings and boy did it rain. we saw lions three days in a row and the last sighting was a hunt - we were lucky enough to be the only car around and watched them stalk for 2 hours i got absolutly soaked with the windows open but loved every minute of it, we also saw leopard to me the animals are more active in the rain then on sunny days. but then thats just my view considering what we saw.


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2007 10:04 pm 
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tigger83 wrote:
to me the animals are more active in the rain then on sunny days.
For predators hunting in rain brings obvious advantages. They may also move around more simply to keep warm.

Johan


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 Post subject: Re: What did you see during or after the rain?
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2011 8:07 am 
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We enjoy going on game drives when it rains (not the violent thunder storm type of rain) but we only travel on the tar roads then. On one fortunate rainy day we have seen leopard, lion and cheetah in the Satara area :) .

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 Post subject: Re: What did you see during or after the rain?
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2011 9:32 am 
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We've had nice sightings during/after the rain - e.g. this last December a pride of lions across the road from 'n smallish herd of buffalo. (Had it too ourselves for almost 2 hours - in the South! :shock: ). Also nice close-up sightings of water fowl that mistake the wet tar roads for rivers, but...

I hate driving around with the windows closed :evil: - it takes away from the KNP experience.


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