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 Post subject: Pardus is where? KNP, June 2007
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 1:41 pm 
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Pssst....look at my location..... :shock:
:twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:


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 Post subject: where is pardus
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 4:27 pm 
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:twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :wink:
T Tequila
A Amaroela
M Mampoer
B Bolls
O Old Brown Sherry
T Tassies
I Ice House Beer

If you mix this you will have a headache on Monday.

And that spells TAMBOTI

And that is where you are. :mrgreen:


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 6:55 pm 
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:big_eyes: Must that be taken with eish Piet?

The trip starts officially tomorrow morning and we hope (if Jubatus does not spot any pumpkins, ginger beer, lemon grass plants, raptors, skillies and so forth along the road) to be there round about lunch time.

Did some Schumaker shopping as untill this morning at 10:00, Pardus was only dreaming and yearning about Kruger ....

Felis and Laine will be reporting on the ad-hoc occassion if we spot LBJ's or Impies...

Now it's time for a spot of packing...


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 8:29 pm 
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Hi All

We arrived safely and it was not at lunch time....and contrary to anything that Jubatus says after this, I DID NOT BUY PUMPKIN!

Had incredible sightings so far in the limited daylight hours to our disposal.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 10:00 pm 
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Location: On my anthill...
This my first trip post....

Let me get the ducks or tarentaals in a row: Pardus was doing the shopping today - 1 bag avo's, 1 bag oranges, 6 papayas and one visit to a friend in Sabie later, we actually kissed the bridge at the Sabie. Being the elder cat in this feline band, is not easy as the young cats are rather cocky.

What a joy to be able to have the young sis-stir to keep the old bones going... :roll:

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Learn to greet your friends with a smile, they carry too many frowns in their own hearts, to be bothered with yours.


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2007 9:14 am 
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Location: what does spinning mean? :-|
Juba!!! welcome...and about time... 8)

ok..so besides the phone call on saturday to say that the Sis-stirs had arrived safely and the fact that they made me as jealous as .... :mrgreen: i havent heard a thing.. will keep ya'all posted... :D


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2007 10:22 am 
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Location: what does spinning mean? :-|
ok....first sms of many (i hope :? )

Quote:
lion at Renosterkoppies, Nyala on LS road and rhino


:mrgreen:


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2007 12:25 pm 
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Location: Greater KNP - Orpen to be exact
Hey All...

Have had little contact with the two birds in south but know the ellies is low think they had to much marulas in December so they moved to a place where there is none...

Will keep yo updated when I hear anything


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Unread postPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2007 8:40 am 
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Location: what does spinning mean? :-|
hi all,

got a phone call from Pardus last night..she says the game is absolutely teeming yet she does notice the lack of ellies....

also got up close and personal with a leopard yesterday on the way to Mlondozi... :mrgreen: she says the leopard lady was so close she could have reached out and touched it... :mrgreen:


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Unread postPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2007 10:35 pm 
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Location: Greater KNP - Orpen to be exact
:dance: :dance: Hey all Pardus and Jubatus saw Sable 500m from Marula loop today and they got a mating pair of loins and lepord in tree... :evil: :evil: :evil:


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Unread postPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 9:18 pm 
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The batlle of the loins... :shock: And in retrospect, after viewing the photos, we must announce with embarrasment that it wasn't love birds at all...as it seems that the "lady" has a beard... :roll:


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2007 9:53 pm 
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The two "cats" are back safely after a wonderful and blessed trip. There are zillions of photos to work through and then to find words to describe another journey home.

Yes, it was my first full moon in Kruger and it was an amazing experience, but more of that later!

Tonight, I remain with bush heightened senses and with ears so sharply tuned to hear a twig snap, I can hear my neighbour snoring.... :shock:


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 10:24 pm 
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23/06/07

Bateleur’s High-Tea

It was dark still when I woke, lying under the warm blankets, I listened to the quiet of the new day. As if from a cocoon, energy pulsed through me, unfurling wings like an emerging butterfly. Soon the wintry sun emerged from the east and met us on the twin strips of road that would take us home. It was a cold Highveld morning, but three women can chirp and cackle themselves into excited warmth.

Our first stop was at Belfast to get a Wimpy coffee with “acon and beggs”. Then onto the road less traveled…the rolling hills now covered in pale yellow, met with an impossibly blue sky on the horizon. A Dullstroom stopover to get a supply of ginger biscuits for our morning waterhole tea-time. As we ascended the mountains, I started to guzzle fresh air scented by Eucalyptus and Pine and my city weary heart realized that it was time to find peace.

Arriving in a bustling Hazyview, true to tradition, we haggled for avocados, juicy oranges and sweet organic papinos. By now, T-bone (sis-stir’s bakkie) was rolling eyes at the cargo that seemed to grow by the minute. Three happy women looked how villages along the road became less and less and then it was that moment where you realize that the bush is starting to embrace you. When your eyes starting looking for shadows and movement in the underbrush and your hearing starts to recognize sound on every thinkable decibel. It’s a complete sensory rush that floods your being like cool water after being in an endless desert of numbness.

Kruger Gate! Here I go again. When I stand on that bridge and look at the Sabie River, my heart always feels as if it wants to burst. Perhaps it is the notion that I had come for another pilgrimage, another journey that will fill my soul for many days when I do not see the sun set or feel its warm hands caressing my cheeks. So Jubatus and I duly kneel and kiss our sacred land and cry tears of thankfulness as we stare deeply into the reeds and soft sandy beaches indented with the tracks of our beloved animals of Kruger.
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At reception, Kgomotso greets the two sisters with a warm smile and we start joking with this young man who always remembers us. Twenty minutes later, T-bone is relieved from its cargo and re-packed with bird books, binni’s, cameras and munchies.

Our first sighting was a giraffe, and little did we realize that we will in the next few days become confused of our location…Our outing took us over the low-water bridges at the Sabie and Sand Rivers – we always check the water levels.
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Another handful of Impalas and three more giraffe where we stopped to take some pics, and then our first awesome sighting of the week…a Bateleur Eagle having high tea in the golden rays of the late afternoon sun.
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Last edited by pardus on Tue Jul 03, 2007 10:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2007 9:34 pm 
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24/06/07

Baboon Business

Our first full day in the Park! I woke before my alarm went off. Strange phenomenon that when you are in the city, the snooze button gets croaky after it’s been hit about five times before you finally get to open just one eye.

Day was graying outside and it seemed that the cool weather affects the birds too, as it was very quiet. From afar, I heard the final whoop of the hyena, calling it a day, or rather a night. The first chirps came shyly after that and a few minutes later, having warmed the vocal cords, a Heuglin’s robin burst into joyous song. On cue, the Purplecrested Lourie sputtered a few indignant “kok-kok’s” and a mate replied full heartedly. How good it felt to have dawn filled with a choir of birds and a day stretched in front of us with nothing else to do but just to BE.

I know that Jubatus is going to kill me, but I need to impart that she is a formidable chef amongst many of her incredible qualities (which excludes haggling over bird sightings…). Thus as it goes with being in Kruger, people (like me) who never really bother with breakfast, get hungry and munchie attacks the second they open their eyes. I leave you with this palatable photo and say this; Ainsley, eat your heart out…
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Our route takes us on the S114. At Renosterkoppies dam, the plains game are walking in their treaded paths to the water. Opposite to the water hole, a comatose lion lies with his paws in the air to bake his fat stomach in the morning rays. The impalas and zebras approach gingerly, keeping an eye on the lazy king, yet they drink as if they know that somehow, his agile sprinting is not up to scratch today.
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I must confess at this point that I was a bit lazy to really do any “serious” photography on this day, as I just wanted to feel Kruger and not focus – as puns go – on anything in particular. Being a summer visitor to Kruger, especially September-October, December and autumn April, the first thing that I noticed was the different behaviour of birds. Obviously not displaying, the ones which are visible, look a bit drab in comparison to their colourful summer foliage and they were really not very vocal. I suppose it’s a personal thing, but my bird watching is greatly enhanced by calls. So, it was a new set of rules for me in winter, and some extra effort was required to do some spotting. In abundance, the Forktailed drongo and a little bird that reminded me of a famous Forumite mod…The raptors were also more visible, perhaps because they weren’t nesting in the dense trees as in summer time.
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We left the visible snoring lion and those who only showed face for second, and traveled onwards to Mpondo dam. At the dam, there was quite an array of animals, kudu, waterbuck, impala, and zebra. Not many waterbirds though – a lone Grey heron and a few Blacksmith plovers. We took the road towards the S26 and as we circled the dam, we found an impala in the small spruit below the dam wall. What we could see was the head and a piece of its neck. We were speculating that the hyenas could be hiding it in the water to eat it later.

The S26 yielded very little animal sightings, but the trees and shrubs were surprisingly green for this time of year, and this area made quite a contrast to the rest of the wintry display we had seen so far. We traveled back to the H4-2 and then to the S137, hoping for a slim chance to maybe spot Duke. We were treated to a sighting of a sleeping white rhino who’s breathing made small clouds of dust on the red soil. At Duke's water hole, quite a lot of Zebra and Wildebeest were drinking and a Wattled plover was running circles around them. The bird hide had a number of families with young children and it was heartening to see how dads and mums were explaining about the hippo’s and terrapins. We did not stay long, as the hide was rather packed. Back on the H4-2, we spotted our first ellie and also quite a lot of ostriches – about six in total – giraffe and a few buffies.

Stopover at Lower Sabie – boy it was packed! One could hardly move in the shop and the queue was long. Sunset dam was rather quiet too. All the pachyderms seemed to be in a state of half-hibernation. The hippo’s were lying with pink bellies in the sun and some of the biggest crocs I had seen amongst them. I am sure that one of them will soon qualify to be the stand-in for the Loch Ness monster…

We took a loop road on the H4-1 and stopped to watch the antics of a baboon family. These ouks are much better than the ones I meet on the street corners on my way to work, save the “I have six kids and….” boards, they will beg the milk out of your coffee. We hardly stopped and the little baboons tried to scale the canopy of the bakkie. The funny part was the glass which dumbfolded them, they wiped it, licked it and tried to bite it and soon slid off the bumper when they lost their footing.
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We stopped at Nkuhlu for late afternoon tea and decided on a spot close to the river. As soon as we put down our tea basket, we were “approached” by a real mean looking male baboon and we literally swiped our basket away from him. Luckily the attendant saw this and he was chased away quickly. What a perfect ending to our day – tea in the bush, with a river gurgling beside us and Glossy Starlings gossiping above us in the canopy of a Jackalberry tree.
Image


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2007 5:27 pm 
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25/06/07

Pardus’s Meeting

Life isn’t easy in Africa. The previous night we were kept awake by whooping hyenas and thick tailed bush babies who sounded like THEY were the ones having a WAIL of a party! Oh, such incredible bliss to hear these nocturnal sounds and just for good measure, a few crickets joined in to make the night symphony magnificent. The absolute bonus was the balmy evening that invited one outside. I stood in the darkness and cast my eyes to the shimmering sky and felt how each star kissed my heart. The stars I so miss when I am dwelling in the city displayed so close, I could almost touch them…

Our urgent thirst for Kruger a tiny bit quenched after the first day’s exploration, we decided to take a leisurely drive towards Tshokwane for a brunch. The H1-2 our point of departure and then we circled back on the H12 to travel on the S30 – Salitje road. Not such a lot of animal traffic, but the sun bathed everything in such beautiful light, that it was just relaxing to weave through the dappled spots of light and shadow. Impala, vervets and a lone giraffe. We took our favourite loop on the Salitje and parked underneath our sausage tree with a great view onto the river. Steaming morning tea and crunchy ginger biscuits accompanied our sighting of a herd of buffalo grazing peacefully in the reeds. Such incredible serenity filled my being, I really thought that I was having one my good Kruger dreams…
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At the junction, we turned onto the S29 and two magnificent kudu bulls gave us a display for a few minutes. On the H10, we had excellent sightings of plains game and about 100 meter into the Muntshe Loop, a lazy White rhino was sleeping amongst a mixed herd of zebra and wildebeest. To our delight, a few kilometers onwards, we sighted a pair of Secretary birds in action amongst the tall grass. We stopped at Nkumbe and watched the end of the horizon, exhaling our cares, releasing our beings to the vastness of an African plain.
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Tshokwane was quiet, and we busied ourselves with a, by then, much needed, almost supper. Jubatus sliced the fresh papaya, and soon the whole population of Starlings descended upon the branches above us. A cacophony of excited chirps accompanied our late meal, and of course, the skelm ones trying to sneak in a bite, added to this very earthy “restaurant”. Well fed and somewhat lazy, we started to head back to Skukuza.

At Silolweni Dam, the animals started to pour in for their late afternoon drink. Giraffe, hippos, buffalo, waterbuck and impala were dallying around the banks. As we turned into the H1-2, we found the rest of the buffalo herd close to the road, and almost all of them were lying down in the short grass. Three kilometers onwards, the veld was still smoldering from a burn.
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The sun was preparing to hand over day to night and all around us, everything was bathed in a coppery hue. This was my favourite time of day, the light seemed to soften and the shadows blurred the harsh lines – the last hours of daylight contained wisdom and dreams…We turned in at the Elephant Waterhole and I looked without really seeing, but I saw! There she was, less than half a meter away from me and we stared at each other, no rather, she looked right into my soul with her incredible eyes. At this point I wish to mention that I did manage to take some photos, but that I forgot to clear my camera memory the previous night…luckily, that which I could not capture on camera, was preserved on video by Jubatus! I also wish to say that this Pardus was shaking like a reed because I had never been so close to a leopard before, and that again, my being was touched in such a profound way by this experience, that I will treasure this meeting of two Pardus’s for the rest of my life!
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At Lake Panic, our day ended admist the sounds of Whitefaced ducks, early evening calls of the Dikkops and the grunting of hippo's with a sky turning into vivid pinks and purples.
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