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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 6:53 am 
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In the following day, January 8th 2011, we were out early down the Tamboti access in order to reach the Orpen-Satara Road, beginning our movement to Olifants, where we would sleep that day.

Here is the list of sightings in the Tamboti road that morning:
1 Helmeted Guineafowl (Numida meleagris), 1 juvenile Yellow-Billed Kite (Milvus aegyptius), 1 Laughing Dove (Streptopelia senegalensis), 1 Rattling Cisticola (Cisticola chiniana), Burchell’s Zebras (Equus quagga), Blue Wildebeests (Connochaetes taurinus) with cubs, Impalas and 1 Crested Francolin (Dendroperdix sephaena).

We found a Helmeted Guineafowl incessantly calling from the top of a small tree. Since these animals are usually found in groups, it was clear to us that the bird was desperately calling her partner, which did not appear. In the first picture, a general view of the calling bird.

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In this picture, the bird against the beautiful background of the day beginning…

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Details of the Guineafowl calling

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In this picture you can see the Yellow-Billed Kite against the yellowish sky

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And a closer picture

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The Yellow-Billed and the Black Kite can be grouped as a single species. This kite occurs across the sub-Saharan Africa, and is common in southern Africa, except for the Karoo, Kahalari and Namib Desert. It inhabits a wide variety of habitats, with a preference for woodland and rural areas with high human population. It is an intra-African breeding migrant, arriving in southern Africa from August-October and departing in March.

Its food includes a wide variety of animals. This raptor typically searches for prey aerially, using the style of flight characteristic of kites (which gives their name), swiveling the tail horizontally to steer accurately. Once it spots some prey, it rapidly swoops to the ground to catch it.

Here you can see how close the Helmeted Guineafowl and the Yellow-Billed Kite were from one another. Early morning means more animals. And remember the Tamboti access is a short road. The day was promising.

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Not so good picture, but the only time we saw the Rattling Cisticola during our trip.

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This is classified as Least Concern with stable populations in the IUCN Red List.

A map of its range can be found here: http://maps.iucnredlist.org/map.html?id=106007325

In southern Africa, it is locally common in Acacia savanna, young woodland on old cultivated land, gardens and patches of bush in open grassland.

Its nests are exploited by parasite bird such as Diderick Cuckoo and Brown-backed Honeyguide.

Hear it calling here: http://www.xeno-canto.org/species/Cisticola-chiniana

It will become clear why it is called “rattling”.

To avoid losing the habit, a Zebra picture.

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And a landscape picture with wildebeests

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And then a Blue Wildebeest close-up.

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And, finally, a congregation of wildebeest cubs.

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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 11:21 am 
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Charbell - after a long absence :( just have the wonderful opportunity to caught up with you interesting report :D

So glad that you stayed in Tamboti - nothing can beat the bush feeling of that little gem of a camp.

Enjoying all the photos and interesting info.

Thanks :thumbs_up:
Leana


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 11:27 am 
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Love your little wildebeests, Charbel, :clap:

and all those pictures with animals in the road such a the wild dogs and the baboons :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 12:54 pm 
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I hope the poor Guineafowl found its mate! :(

Beautiful landscape picture with the Blue Wildebeest! And the group picture of the young ones is awesome! :clap: :clap:

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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 7:18 pm 
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Leanawel wrote:
Charbell - after a long absence :( just have the wonderful opportunity to caught up with you interesting report :D

So glad that you stayed in Tamboti - nothing can beat the bush feeling of that little gem of a camp.

Enjoying all the photos and interesting info.

Thanks :thumbs_up:
Leana


Leana!
Welcome back to the TR! It will get faster these days. I am going to KTP in one month and so, and another TR will be written soon. So, I need to finish this.
Tamboti is a gem! This captures its feeling!

Cheers
Charbel


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 7:22 pm 
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Pumbaa wrote:
Love your little wildebeests, Charbel, :clap:

and all those pictures with animals in the road such a the wild dogs and the baboons :thumbs_up:


Thanks, Pumbaa. Wild Dogs were indeed a highlight in the trip. We did not expect to find them so often... And Baboons! Tell me about fun!

Cheers
Charbel


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 7:30 pm 
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:mrgreen: Charbel, as always, stunning photos and great TR. :thumbs_up:

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UNITE AGAINST POACHING...What we protect,
do not let poachers take it away!

Extinction is forever and survival is up to---every last one of us!


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 9:46 pm 
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hilda wrote:
I hope the poor Guineafowl found its mate! :(

Beautiful landscape picture with the Blue Wildebeest! And the group picture of the young ones is awesome! :clap: :clap:


Dear Hilda
My feeling after some time watching the Guineafowl is that she would never see the mate again... That's what I felt in the spot. Sad but part of life

Cheers
Charbel


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 9:48 pm 
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Philip1 wrote:
:mrgreen: Charbel, as always, stunning photos and great TR. :thumbs_up:


Dear Philip,
Always happy to have you on board!


Cheers
Charbel


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Fri May 03, 2013 2:28 am 
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The Orpen-Satara Road (H7) was, again, very rich in sightings:

A mixed group of Burchell’s Zebras, Blue Wildebeests, and Impalas, 3 Black-Backed Jackals (Canis mesomelas), including a cub, 1 Cape Turtle-Dove (Streptopelia capicola),1 Southern Yellow-Billed Hornbill (Tockus leucomelas), 2 Warthogs (Phacochoerus africanus), 1 Red-Billed Oxpecker (Buphagus erythrorhynchus), 1 European Roller (Coracias garrulus), 4 male Kudus (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) mixed with Impalas, more 8 Warthogs, 1 Red-Backed Shrike (Lanius collurio), 2 Lesser Spotted Eagles (Aquila pomarina), 1 more European Roller, 1 Golden-Breasted Bunting (Emberiza flaviventris), 1 Baboon troop, 1 Saddle-Billed Stork (Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis) , 2 Little Grebes (Tachybaptus ruficollis), another Baboon troop mixed with Impalas, 1 Speke's hinged tortoise (Kinixys spekii), 2 dung beetles, and 1 unidentified snake, unfortunately killed by a car, showing why we have to drive slowly in the parks.

First, just because I love them, some Zebra’s pictures, the second with lanscape.

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We found these BBJs quite close to the road, allowing nice pics like this.

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A good sleep for us.

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Then they moved.

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There was a ranger car nearby. See how small this BBJ looks like in front of the car!

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Then to bed somewhere else.

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BBJs are classified as Least Concern in the IUCN Red List, showing stable populations. Good news!

Here you can see a map of its distribution: http://maps.iucnredlist.org/map.html?id=3755

They have two disjoint geographic ranges, in southern and east Africa. A large part of this range is not within protected areas. This disjunct distribution is similar to that of other endemic African species adapted to dry conditions, such as the Aardwolf and the Bat-eared Fox.

Black-backed Jackals are relatively unspecialized canids. They are very adaptable, with their opportunistic lifestyle, which allows them to live well in a wide variety of habitats. They are persecuted for killing livestock and because they are rabies vectors. But population control efforts appear largely ineffective, only temporarily and locally reducing their numbers.

Warthogs are always fun to find. This was a large specimen, quite beautiful.

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He gave a good look at us.

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A Red-Billed Oxpecker was working on this Warthog.

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Even in the face of the Warthog!

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A Warthog butt for the calendar!

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Finally, this wonderful animal in the landscape.

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Later we found a larger group of Warthogs, a little farther in the savana.

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I was marveled by this blonde mane. So, I cropped it.

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I loved the mixing of the horns of Kudus and Impalas in this scene.

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And then the Kudus for a solo.

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The Red-Backed Shrike is a lovely bird. It is a pity it didn’t stay long in the perch, and just a few pics were possible

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Here you can hear their nice calls: http://www.xeno-canto.org/browse.php?sp ... ed+Shrike+

Several recordings, from all around the world. This bird is found in Eurasia, where it breeds, and southern Africa, non-breeding populations. Its populations are not threatened (classified as least concern by the IUCN), but its numbers are decreasing.

We also found Lesser Spotted Eagles in this road, two of them. Here are pics.

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Hear their calls here: http://www.xeno-canto.org/browse.php?sp ... tted+Eagle

This eagle breeds in Eastern Europe and migrates south to the non-breeding season in Africa. It arrives in southern Africa in October and most of them depart in March. In southern Africa, it is common in several regions, preferring savanna and open woodland and avoiding mountainous and densely wooded areas.

Here is the geographical distribution of the species: http://maps.iucnredlist.org/map.html?id=106003530

The Lesser Spotted Eagle is classified as Least Concern by the IUCN Red List, with unknown population trend. In some sources, I found the information that its population appears to be decreasing sharply, possibly due to radioactive fallout from Chernobyl, hunting and habitat loss for agriculture. In the IUCN website, however, we find the information that the population trend is in fact unknown, but the population is not believed to be decreasing sufficiently rapidly to approach extinction thresholds. This source is regarded as reliable.

A curios is that it mainly eats termite alates in southern Africa. It can forage on the ground or capture prey from a perch.

Here is a pic of the Golden-Breasted Bunting we also found in the Orpen-Satara Road. Indeed, a nice golden breast!

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And here is the bird calling.

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This bird is classified as Least Concern, with stable populations in the IUCN Red List. However, this species is not described as really common, even though it is one of the most widespread African buntings. It is regularly captured illegally for the cage bird trade, something that needed to go. Why keep birds in cages?

The distribution can be found here: http://maps.iucnredlist.org/map.html?id=106008956

It is fragmented in some parts, but broad, what helps its survival.

It prefers savanna, especially Acacia, Burkea africana (Burkea) and Colosphermum mopane (Mopane) woodland. It is also common in dry woodland along dry rivers, tall shrubland on rocky ground, edges of croplands, exotic plantations and gardens.

You can listen to it here, including a recording from KNP: http://www.xeno-canto.org/browse.php?sp ... d+Bunting+

Diderick and Jacobin Cuckoos parasitize its nests. It mainly eats seeds, flower buds and insects. Foraging can take place on the ground and in the foliage of small trees and shrubs.

That's it for the moment.

The most interesting part of the trip was in fact beginning. Many things to happen! Next, many Baboon troops, many elephants, amusing and threatening us...

Cheers
Charbel


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Fri May 03, 2013 10:28 am 
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Oh WoW Charbel!

What a variety show! Birds everywhere!

Just love the Zebra and BWB and the BBJ! Great pics!

Thanx for sharing it with us all.

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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Fri May 03, 2013 4:17 pm 
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Awesome BBJ, Zebra, Warthog and Kudu pictures Charbel! :clap: :clap:

Your birds are also beautiful! :dance: :dance:

_________________
"Happiness, I have discovered, is nearly always a rebound from hard work." - David Grayson


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Fri May 03, 2013 6:13 pm 
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Super Mongoose wrote:
Oh WoW Charbel!

What a variety show! Birds everywhere!

Just love the Zebra and BWB and the BBJ! Great pics!

Thanx for sharing it with us all.


Thanks, Super Mongoose.
H7 was very good to us, everytime we drove it. It became a must go for me in KNP!

Cheers
Charbel


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Fri May 03, 2013 6:56 pm 
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hilda wrote:
Awesome BBJ, Zebra, Warthog and Kudu pictures Charbel! :clap: :clap:

Your birds are also beautiful! :dance: :dance:


Hi Hilda
Thanks! New posting soon!!!

All the best
Charbel


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 Post subject: Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011
Unread postPosted: Fri May 03, 2013 7:23 pm 
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hilda wrote:
Awesome BBJ, Zebra, Warthog and Kudu pictures Charbel! :clap: :clap:
Your birds are also beautiful! :dance: :dance:


:thanx: Charbel, i must agree with Hilda. Stunning! :mrgreen:
I like the presentation of your "Informative" TR. :clap:
Warthogs my favourite.
:thumbs_up:

_________________
"Lose yourself in Nature and find Peace!" (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
UNITE AGAINST POACHING...What we protect,
do not let poachers take it away!

Extinction is forever and survival is up to---every last one of us!


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