Anne-marie...thanks for turning the page..I am going to need a bit of space tonight.
Thank you for your kind comments. Its only a pleasure sharing this report with like-minded people.
Here we go!!Day 2 - 01 April Kij Kij to Nossob
We hit the Auob River road and were suprised to find it in such a good state. Hardly any corrugations?? Was I just imagining it or did I exaggerate the corrugations we experienced last July. Nevertheless it was a pleasure to drive without you fillings coming out. At Kij Kij we stopped for a herd of Gemsbok and also saw this lone tortoise speeding across the hot desert sand.
Also this stunning Tawney Eagle in flight. I am not sure if this one is juvenile due to its light coloring, so an id would be welcomed. We saw many more of these light colored Tawneys over the next few days.
Just as we were picking up speed again, Mattanator shouts "African Wild Cat". Stop. from under a tree this AWC darted into the shade of the next bush, then sat and watched us. Our first AWC in daytime in the park. Another animal to tick off the list.
A few more sightings before Melkvlei were a pair of Tawneys in a tree, another single Tawney, an adult Bateluer on the ground (quite far off), an immature Black Chested Snake Eagle and a Lanner falcon.
Here is a Greater Kestrel giving a nice pose and very patient with us, trying to find the better light position.
Also giving a showing these White Backed Vultures.
We stopped and Melkvlei for a well deserved break at about 13:00. So 6 hours and not even half way….great! So much more to see before gate closure at 18:30. These Yellow Mongoose entertained us and were very tame, probably due to the visitors feeding them. This one seemed to want to play hide and seek and opted to be the first one to go and seek.
We hit the road again and still enjoying the beautiful roads. STOP!!…Meerkat next to the road. Reverse to get into a better position and fire of a few shots. Ok more than a few. Here are two of them. The flies were all over this chaps eyes and nose, probably after the moisture.
On the way we had to skirt many parts of the road covered in water. It seems that quite a lot of rain had fallen during the previous evening's thundershower. We passed Dikbaardskolk and there they were….the yellow graders. The reason for our wonderful highway like journey. And yes as soon as we passed them, the teeth rattling, bone jarring started. There was good news however…..the graders were on their way to Nossob. The parts of the road that was wetted down by the thundershower wasn't bad at all…but the rest!! We decided there and then that our favorite sighting in the spark was big and yellow.
Just before Marie se draai this Kori Bustard.
At Marie se dray there was quite a lot of water with many Gemsbok and Hartebeeste hanging around enjoying the water. In addition we counted no less than 12 large birds of prey, which included, juvenile Bateleurs, Juvenile and adult Tawney Eagles.
This Cape Turtle dove couldn't get enough water quick enough.
We were then forced to get to Nossob before they locked us out and also to try and get a place on the night drive. The staff were friendly and efficient with the check in and most importantly taking our roosterkoek order for later that evening. At R4 a jam filled roosterkoek was a bargain. We couldn't get a spot on the sunset drive and booked for the next evening. We unpacked and I took a last walk around the camp looking for owls. The only one I found was this Pearl Spotted owl.
I downloaded and backed up the days pics from the two cameras and did a first pass delete of the out of focus and bad pics. Also got the batteries on charge. We visited the hide later that evening and saw a Puffadder slithering around in front of the hide and later disappearing under the hide…OK…so were did it go. Time for a shower and sleep on this hot and humid evening. Thunderstorms threatening again.
I was dead tired from the long day, lack of sleep due to excitement and anticipation for the next day..What will tomorrow bring.