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Jan van Wyk's Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

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Jan van Wyk
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Jan van Wyk's Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:35 pm

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This was our second year we visited KTP in December and we were again not disappointed despite the bad roads.
We saw 46 Lions, 16 Cheetahs and saw for the first time Brown Hyenas, 12 in total.
The only sad thing was the many dead Eland laying all over especially in the Twee Rivieren area. It was a true sign of the harshness of the Kgalagadi.
Hope you will enjoy my second TR to KTP and that the images will tell the complete story.
Following all the reports of all the predator sightings at Twee Rivieren on forum we decided to book a day earlier.
Our bookings were:
• 3 Nights at Twee Rivieren.
• 4 Nights at Nossob.
• 2 Nights at Mata Mata.
• 2 Nights at the Kalahari Tent camp.
• 1 Night Tree Rivieren
We drove through from Witbank 1100 km and arrived at Twee Rivieren late that afternoon.

We unpacked and set off for a late afternoon drive.

To be continued...
Last edited by Jan van Wyk on Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:10 pm

Thank you for the comments and views appreciate them all. :D

Sheenaugh-Lee: First time since 2007 that large heards move into KTP

For the full story

http://www.sanparks.org/about/news/default.php?id=55354

I am not a writer and hope the images will tell the full story.. :think:

We took the Mata Mata road and sadly our first sighting was a dead Eland.

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It didn’t stop there and at Houmoed we counted 16 dead Eland. It was a sad sight, but as they say, nature is not for the faint hearted.

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That’s why there is a speed limit - Tortoise crossing

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It was a blistering hot afternoon, but it did not spoil the beauty of the Kgalagadi with the special rainbow.

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To be continued....
Last edited by Jan van Wyk on Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Tue Jan 22, 2013 6:50 pm

Tx guys

We saw our first Brown Hyena

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On our way back we stopped at Samevloeing, we were greeted with the same picture, dead Eland. We wonder why they died at the waterhole and reading the reports and feedback from Sanparks it looks like they died of hunger and not thrust.

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The Jackals had a feast on this one was spotted at Samevloeiing


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Our trip started on a sad note, but little did we know the next day would be so successful!

Preview of tomorrows post: Rooiputs magnificence Male

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to be continued.....

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:55 pm

Thank for the comments and views...appreciated :dance:

Morning drive Day 2 – Lions and more Lions!
Our plan for the first day was to drive to Kij Kij and come back via the dune road.
We were one of the first cars out and were rewarded with our first Lion sighting a view kilometres outside the gate, two females on a dune.

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Between Samevloeiing and Leeudril a Kestrel was posing in beautiful morning light.

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It got even better when we saw a Honey badger running in the riverbed looking for food.


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As usual the Goshawk was tracking him hoping for a quick snack.

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A Jackal also joins the search.

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Our first Hartebees

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We saw a few cars at Kij Kij and that mean only one thing Lions.
The two resident Males, one big Male with a beautiful main, younger mate and one heavy pregnant female were just finished having a drink.
Please allow me to share many images of this wonderful sighting in perfect Kalahari light

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More images to follow.........

Jan van Wyk
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Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Fri Jan 25, 2013 5:09 pm

Thank you all for the kind comments ...appreciate them all :dance: :dance:

Please allow me to share some more images off this wonderful sighting........

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to be continue ...more Lions :dance:

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Sun Jan 27, 2013 3:56 pm

Thank you for your comments and joining me on our trip. :dance:

In the meantime back at the waterhole 3 young Male keep their distances from the pride Males.

They also posed for some great images in beautiful early morning light.

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More images of the young Males to follow...

Jan van Wyk
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Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:53 pm

Thank you all for viewing and the kind comments. :dance: :dance:

Internet finally up and running again... :x

More images of the young Males

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To be continue...Dune road

Jan van Wyk
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Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:14 pm

Thank you for all the comments...appreciate them all :dance: :dance:

The ever present Jackals had a drink after the Lions moved away.

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We left the Lions and took the dune road back to Twee rivieren.
Our first sighting was a Gemsbok posing against the dunes.

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We spotted a Goshawk beside the road busy harassing a snake.

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Got some great portraits of a Goshawk against a perfect background.

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To be continued ...

Jan van Wyk
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Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:50 pm

Thanks again for the comments and views. :dance: :dance:

More images from the dune road

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Another dead Eland

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The view from Gemsbokplein after the recent fires

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To be continued..

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Sat Feb 02, 2013 8:10 pm

Thank you for joining me on my photo trip and kind comments :dance: :dance:

The Picnic spot at the Museum is always a perfect Pit stop for a late brunch and admire the view.
We found a Meerkat den. Not perfect, but a keeper for now..

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Looks almost sad...

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Our first bird sighting in the Auob River was a Pigmy Falcon in the open.

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A Crimson-breasted Shrike was searching for food under the tree. My first decent image after many visits.

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To be continued...

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Sun Feb 03, 2013 8:39 pm

Thank you for your kind comments...Super Mongoose....Sheenaugh-Lee.....Pumbaa.....Meandering Mouse.....Aristocat... anne-marie.....Trrp-trrrrrrrr.....hilda and Div.Comments and views appreciated :dance: :dance: :dance:

Div thank you for the info about the dead Eland. We wondered why no scavengers started eating them and suppose they can only eat so much. :wink:

Young Goshawks are always busy on the ground looking for food. This one took a break and allowed me to capture this one against a beautiful background.

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We also spotted a Kudu not often seen near Twee Rivieren Camp.

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We had a amazing morning drive and could not wait for the afternoon drive, but first it was time to lay low with the temperature above 40 degrees.

Afternoon drive to follow...

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:11 pm

Thank you all for the comments :dance: :dance:

We decided to go back to Kij Kij and look for the Lions we saw the morning.

We found them relaxing in the shade.

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If you need directions to Rooiputs...

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Afternoon drive continued...

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:23 pm

Thank you Pumbaa,hilda,NetEk and Lionspoon for the comments...appreciate them all :dance: :dance:

We decided to leave the Lions at Kij Kij and took the Dune road again back to TR.

Jackals are almost around every corner and this one was on his way to Munro.

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At Munro we spotted two Tawny Eagles drinking.

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We waited patiently until they take off for some wonderful images....to follow

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Wed Feb 06, 2013 7:19 pm

Thank you, Bushbuddies,Sharifa and Hilda for the comments :dance:

We waited for the take off and were rewarded with some great images.

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Back to TR after an amazing day of sightings we end the day with another Jackal.

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To be continued day 3, our last day at TR before leaving for Nossob

Jan van Wyk
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 4172
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Kgalagadi December 2012: Heat, Dust and Rain

Unread postby Jan van Wyk » Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:10 pm

Thank you for the kind comments :dance: :dance: :dance:

Day 3

We decided to take the Nossob road, eat brunch at the second dune road and return to TR.

Beautiful sunrise

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The Goshawk we photographed the first morning was in the same tree.

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We saw our second Brown Hyena marking his territory. a real rare sighting.

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He moved to the other side

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and with the light perfect pose for some beautiful images. (May be he has a good hairdresser)

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He had enough and decided ran away

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To be continued...


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