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Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

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charbel
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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby charbel » Tue Dec 17, 2013 5:38 pm

Trrp-trrrrrrrr wrote:Charbel,

Great Ellie shots... :clap: :clap: and oh is that little one not just so adorable. :dance: :dance:

:popcorn: :popcorn:


Dear Trrp-trrrrrrr
Yes, an adorable cute little ellie.... A gift to see it...

Cheers
Charbel

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby charbel » Wed Dec 18, 2013 5:51 pm

Here is a posting for the other animals we saw in Roodewal Road, besides the wonderful Ellie encounters.

First, a Lilac-Breasted Roller, less common to see in summer than the European Rollers, but residents and seen all year long. Wonderful bird, anyway, with such bright colors.

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Crowned Lapwings are also other common but beautiful birds.

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Wattled Starlings were often seen flying. Here it is one we found standing in a branch.

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Leopard Tortoises were always great to find during the trip.

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Finally, a Steenbok was waiting for us in the road, one of the cutest antelopes we can ever find!

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Here is a close of this wonderful animal.

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After staying with us for some minutes, it escaped to the savana.

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Next step: Satara-Olifants Road

All the best
Charbel

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Carol g
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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby Carol g » Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:32 pm

charbel, that little steenbokkie is the cutest thing, just love them. Lovely bird pics, thanks for sharing :gflower:
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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby hilda » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:22 pm

Gorgeous sightings and pictures! Thanks Charbel! :clap: :clap:

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby Super Mongoose » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:39 pm

Great sightings Charbel! I had to catch up a bit...

Love the Ellies, even if they can give us a big fright!

Love the Steenbokkie too, but the Wattled Lapwing on a branch I've never seen been before, very special!
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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby Philip1 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:47 pm

Charbel, this is why we go back again and again!!!! :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :thanx: For sharing!!
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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby charbel » Sat Dec 21, 2013 8:03 pm

Dear Philip, Super Mongoose, Hilda and Carol
Thanks for keeping attentive to the TR. This is what gives pleasure to write it.
It was special, indeed, to see the little Steenbok and the Wattled Starling quiet in the branch, instead of flying by....
I will now make a posting in the KTP TR.

Cheers
Charbel

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby charbel » Sat Dec 28, 2013 4:40 pm

In H1-4 (Satara-Olifants Road), we drove just a small stretch and, thus, didn't see much: 1 Red-Crested Korhaan (Eupodotis ruficrista), 1 Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea), 1 Woodland Kingfisher (Halcyon senegalensis).

But let me begin with a landscape picture, from N'wamanzi. What a place!

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In the bridge over the Olifants river, it was amazing to see that powerful river flowing under our feets. The river are a must-see in Kruger. However, I have been reading on environmental problems in the park and one major problem are the rivers which come from other places and bring pollutants to the park. It is probably a complex problem to handle, since these rivers cross many areas....

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And here is a pic for the Hall of Shame!

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Finally, for this posting, two pics of the Red-Crested Korhaan.

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Charbel

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby charbel » Sat Dec 28, 2013 5:04 pm

In the Olifants rest camp, Carol made peace with the elephants after the scaring situation in the Roodewal Road.

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Carol and me in front of the Olifants River, inside the camp.

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The Olifants river seen from the camp, in two different times in the afternoon, under different lights.

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And finally the Olifants River with a rainbow.

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That night we did our first night drive, around the Olifants rest camp. It was a good night drive, in which we saw:
1 Scrub Hare (Lepus saxatilis)
1 Springhare (Pedetes capensis)
Impalas
1 Genet (Genetta genetta)
3 Hippos eating in land
1 Giraffe
2 Flap-Necked Chameleons (Chamaeleo dilepis)
1 Waterbuck, with cubs
1 Flat Rock Scorpion (Hadogenes sp.)
1 Spotted Eagle-Owl (Bubo africanus)
1 Verreaux’s (Giant) Eagle-Owl (Bubo lacteus)

We didn't have the right equipment for night conditions. Thus, not many good pics. One worthy was from a Flap-Necked Chameleon.

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This is a pic of the Flat Rock Scorpion in the middle of the road.

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The Giant Eagle-Owl.

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Finally, to see Hippos eating at night, in land, when the sun doesn't harm them, was a great experience. It was also amazing to discover how shy they are when they are in land. This one was hiding from us in the car, with his head inside a small shrub. Looked very childish doing something like this, I hide my head and I don't see nobody, so nobody sees me... :lol:

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That's it for Jan 8th. When I come back to this TR I will be dealing with Jan 9th. Next posting, however, will be in the Kgalagadi TR.

All the best
Charbel

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby Pumbaa » Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:07 am

Thanks so much, Charbel,

seemed that your night drive was very successful :thumbs_up:

Love your impressions you took from the Olifants river - Sigh :dance: and still a lot of water flowing in same :big_eyes:

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby Meandering Mouse » Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:04 am

What wonderful pictures 8) I do love the little elephant at Olifants. I always give it a "thank you'' pat when I am there. Beautiful pictues of the views, they are magnificent.

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby hilda » Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:00 pm

Great pictures of the gorgeous Olifants River Charbel! :clap: :clap:

Awesome variety of sightings on your night drive too! :dance: :dance:

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby charbel » Sun Dec 29, 2013 5:07 pm

Dear Pumbaa, Meandering Mouse, and Hilda
Great to find you replies... The Olifants River is so gorgeous indeed. Scenes to be missed, surely! Can't wait to be back there (long time to wait still...).

The night drive was indeed awesome!

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Charbel

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby charbel » Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:07 am

Our trip to KNP was ending, last 5 days. Jan 9th 2011, we woke up early in Olifants, in time to take pics of the Olifants River when the morning was still rising up.

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We strolled around the nice camp and had the lucky to see a couple of Tree Squirrels caught in the act!

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Besides the tree squirrel, we saw only one Gecko and 1 Zebra Millipede in the camp.

We took the car and started moving to Letaba where we would sleep that night. We followed S44 to reach Olifants viewpoint. We were moving slowly and reached a small stream, where we started watching a young Nile Crocodile, very close by, calmly resting in the water.

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As he was close, good pics were easy to take, and we delighted on the close-ups.

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But it was not only that... The stream was bubbling, boiling with 23 Serrated-Hinged Terrapins.

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That was another great encounter, so close to the bathing elephant, another highlight of the trip. They were behaving in a manner that really seemed strange to us, they would come and go, come and go, taking rounds, one after the other...

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The Nile Crocodile was now closer, very very close to the car, and the Terrapins coming and going, coming and going, and as they got close to the car, they would stretch their necks as much as they could, look intently at us, and then go back to the water, just to be replaced by another swarm of Terrapins.

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They were really coming close to the car, as you can see here.

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And that poor fellow Crocodile... they had no respect at all for him, stepping over him, swimming on his back. We thought that was not a Crocodile who was imposing much respect. But he was a young fellow.

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Did you ever seen or heard about this Terrapin behavior? I will end the posting with a sad hypothesis that passed through my mind, in order to see what you think. Anyway, that gave us the opportunity to take some very nice pics, with stunning close-ups of them, with those nice muddy shells.

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Here is the hypothesis... Maybe tourists who would better feel ashamed of themselves were feeding those Terrapins.... They were comijng and going to the car in the hope of food being thrown from the car windows... What do you think? Could it be the explanation for that bizarre behavior?

That stream was anyway fantastic... We were enticed by the Terrapins and our solitary Crocodile.... but then we looked to the side... And there was a Water Monitor on the other side of the road.... But this will be another posting.

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Re: Report of our first trip to Kruger - 3-14 January 2011

Unread postby Pumbaa » Sun Jan 26, 2014 1:50 pm

I know that pond with the terrapins very well and I saw myself people in a car in front of us during our 2007 visit feeding them :evil: They drove off once we approached and we could not follow them because we had to take care of all the terrapins between our car tires :wall:

Nevertheless great crocodile shots :thumbs_up:

Thanks Charbel :popcorn:


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