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 Post subject: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 6:22 pm 
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As reported in the 'Really Rare Sightings' thread from our June 2008 first time trip, we said we will be back.

Last night checked availability and booked from Thursday night!! :lol:

Short of one night :hmz: , in the middle, though, any ideas?

Winter again, but can't wait.

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 11:15 am 
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Itinerary:
Uri 9 July 2009
KTC 10 Jul
Nos 11 - 12 Jul
Bit 13 Jul
Nos 14 -15 Jul
KTC 16 -18 Jul
TR 19 Jul

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 9:49 pm 
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We went back to KTP and now we are back Home :) :( :D

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 10:05 pm 
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Petra Jacobs wrote:
Enjoy, and remember ... bring back lot of :cam:


Only 4.125gb of SD cards used, we'll have to see, as well as what was captured on video :hmz: :whistle:

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 9:49 pm 
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I needed a break, so suggested to SO that we go back to KTP, checked Availabilty and there was, for six days later. But last year we went in winter and said we would return in summer or a warmer time of the year.
She checked the 7 day weather forecast and temps were 6 - 22 each day, so ok to book.

We were short of one night in the middle with its previous night in TR.
Monday morning checked availability and the night was open and promptly booked Nossob, phoned in and painlessly swapped TR for Nossob. So at least some repeat nights otherwise it was to be a case of packing up each morning, not ideal but at least we would be in KTP.

The evening before our departure I suggested to SO that we should either leave at 02h00 or get packed and 'hit the road', the latter was the choice.

Just after 23h00 we were on our way to KTP.

On our 'not yet seen in KTP' list : Cheetah, Brown Hyaena, Caracal, Cape Fox, Honey Badger (previous just a glimpse), Genet, Polecat, Aardwolf, Antbear, Pangolin, Eland, Warthog and Ground Agama, and all the snakes. (still appie birders so no list yet)

A quick pit stop at Klawer for toasted sammies and coffee and then a relatively quiet drive to Keimoes. A couple of bokkies and rabbits en route.

Got to Keimoes at 07h00, pit stop and then had to wait for The butcher to open. Had selections individually vacuum packed and off to Wimpy for breakfast.

Reached KTP at 12h00. Road a pleasure, just so many BEF roadkills on the way. Why?? :( :(

The new reception is a 'nice' building, half of it is in RSA and other half in Botswana. Ladies in RSA and gents in Botswana.

Off to the old gate.
"have you been here before?"
yes
" tyres....., you MUST drive 50km ph"
I MUST drive 50...
"Yes, see here on the rules"
and if I see a lion I must keep driving past at 50...
"No, no you can stop.....

And we were in. :dance:

And the first animal, my SO's favorite little creature

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And off to Samevloeiing to see THE leopard.

And guess what , ...... no leopard. :evil:

I told SO of Moose's observation that people don't great anymore and the responses that supported her observation. A mission was therefore to test it and we greeted each and every vehicle that we saw. We normally greet back or greet familiar vehicles.

So over the dune road and just as it goes down to meet the Auob River meercats, squirrels and yellow mongoose welcomed us.

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This was our first and last sighting of meercats (suricates).

And merrily on our way to Urikaruus.

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 9:36 pm 
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Day 1, 9 July 2009, continued..
Before we entered the gate our Yellow Ribbon was attached.
Sadly we did not see another one for the entire visit, and only @KevinT responded to ours. I did mention the forums at every opportunity.

On the way across the dune road we tested the greeting theory.
7 out of 10 vehicles responded :D
The 3 that did not were towing trailers, in convoy, eating each others dust in a great hurry. Eyes fixed on the road in front of them. :evil:
Thereafter for the rest of our 'holiday' probably about an 80% positive response, with the poorest response being vehicles heading towards TR, saddened by the fact that their 'stay' was ending. Also a grumpy old man, whom we passed a couple of times, that SO gave up on greeting :roll:

Our first 3 in one sighting

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first of many PCG

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Posed patiently next to he road

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First red hartebeest taking a rest

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Horizon filled with wildebeest and springbok

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Springbok on the move

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Tried to capture a proncking 'spring'bok

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Enjoyed this sequence. Each in a different stage of 'flight'

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And so we continued towards Urikaruus.....

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 07, 2009 9:06 pm 
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Who can resist?

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Locking horns

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First of many BBJ. as we are yet to see a Cape Fox ever, every BBJ was checked to make sure. :hmz:


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A ??????? owl, well camouflaged, as a not even amateur stiff neck, I would think that in birding nomenclature it is probably a Southern Chameleon Owl :tongue:

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The first of many Kori Bustards

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And finally we arrived at Urikaruus.

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sat Aug 08, 2009 8:31 pm 
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Rugby is over, well done Bokke, sorry Aussies :dance: :clap: :dance: :clap:
@Pumbaa, @MM, @Dreamer and @ingrid60 :thumbs_up:

We received a warm welcome by Marius to Urikaruus. Handed him supplies from his Sis in TR.

First question, is the leopard still around....no haven't seen him for a while, but 3 hyaena were around last night and this morning a cheetah circled the top of the camp and then came stalking down the river towards the WH...but then a fuel truck came past and disturbed it and it left. Marius wanted to :sniper: the driver. :evil:

And hows Skinny.... we'll have to ask Gus...where/how do we find him...he drives a Land Cruiser with a cheetah emblem and stays in the bush...

Settled into no. 4. As we had been on the road since 23h00 the previous night we took it easy, unpacked and started the braai and watched the odd comings and goings at the WH and a couple of yellow mongoose and squirrels playing around. Plenty of bird activity as well.

I asked SO to buy me gloves for the visit (have not owned/used gloves for 30 years). Did they come in 'handy'! :lol: I also got some red cellophane and made a red cover for my spotlight. I'm still undecided about the red though. Visibility is still reasonable if not less bright and so you can see in a subtle light... and animals did not react to it...so ?

Marius came to check on us. We had a nice chat...he told us about going to the concrete jungle to receive his Kudu Award :clap: :clap:

A LED headlight was also purchased....what a pleasure braaing with it...should have got one years ago.....and with this light braaing I saw eyes in front of no 3, grabbed the spotlight and there they were, 2 hyaenas and later a third. They had approached from the WH came sniffing around infront of the units and then under them and under the walkways etc. Nice to be so close up. :dance:

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This one could smell me on SO's "The Beast" 's door handle.... :big_eyes:

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This was our first and last sighting of hyaena. :cry:

We were almost ready for bed when strange 'screeches' - not heard before...not quite jackals ... not hyaena .... :big_eyes: :big_eyes:

The cacophony got loader and closer..... and closer ..... spotlights were out and then...



Marius shouted leopard :dance: :dance: :dance:

It was in the middle of the bed and with the lights moved across to the bank and approached behind the trees and came to the WH to drink.....still the 'calls' all around. It drank for a couple of minutes and moved up the river with the company of the noise. Poor leopard wasn't going to hunt with that around . But the noise eventually subsided.

They were BEFs, according to Marius.

Pic from video for the record. SO thought it was a cheetah :lol:

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This was also our only leopard of the trip. :cry: :( :cry:
For sound and very brief visual



And so, with a thrilling evening we went to bed, as with every night it was bitterly cold.

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 6:54 pm 
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@ingrid60 and @billyf thanks

DAY 2 : 10 JULY 2009

Whilst packing up

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Kudu Award winner Marius - we promised to post his picture, with Urikaruus units behind him

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We left Urikaruus for KTC

Almost grown up

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We saw this bright colour, slender mongoose, and whist taking pics a vehicle from the front, in a cloud of dust, chased it away :evil: before we could get closer.

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The carcass was still there

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Not often one can get close enough

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First of many 'vulture on nest' sightings

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There was a fluff of dust in the road... we almost drove over these two (fighting or mating?) and then they were up in the tree and then down on the ground...

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Unpacked at KTC into unit no 2. Drove up to MM.

View of the new MM riverside units

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An interesting horn on the gemsbok

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And a sunset view of the unit
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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 8:49 pm 
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@Pumbaa, @Dreamer and @Chickadee keep watching :popcorn:

Day 3: 11 July 2009

Packed up and set off for Nossob.

Just past Sitsas WH came across a small traffic jam. :hmz:

Asked the first vehicle what has been seen.

Cheetah with cubs :dance: :dance:

They had been close to the road but moved into the bush.

:big_eyes: :big_eyes: where??? :big_eyes: :big_eyes:

There she is going over the dune :dance: :dance: :dance:

She crested and sat down scanning all around.

Cubs were not in sight.

Then I noticed a collar. Skinny's mom!!!!!! :dance: :dance:

She lay down....sat up....and then a cub was visible in the grass behind her.......and then another.....up and down....

Eventually they came forward and started playing in front of her....


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And then they came running forward towards the us.... checking all the cars watching and turned back.....

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then climbed a tree....

Now we are CIT members :dance: :dance: :dance:

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Then they went back to mommy...

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Mommy got up streeetched... and walked down and then trotted along to the next ridge... little ones charging along still having fun... :lol: :lol:

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After almost 2 hours we had to leave them and get moving to Nossob.

Later learnt from Mrs Margie Mills that Anton's (aka Skinny) mom's name is Elena, and that this was her territory.



I learned from a colleague that my poor quality is because I downloaded via USB cable, I should try a firewire, I bought one and the downloading looks sharper.....so a bit of editing required again and then I will repost video on the Elena thread.

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:01 pm 
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And so we continued towards the dune road

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We had been on the look out for giraffe whilst in their territory but sadly did not see one.

And then onto the upper dune road....
A secretary bird walking along the top of the dune

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and then took off..
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A juvenile SCG? Stayed posing....

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I always stop to see these little buck...steenbok often seen on the dune road

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A fair amount of activity...each walking away from us...

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And now KTP, March 13, in living colour


Last edited by RichardJ on Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:10 pm 
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And then we hit the Nossob River..

These guys posed nicely

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Three in one

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Another on nest

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Took the Marie-se-draai detour ...but nothing exciting...
Booked into 9B.. ordered rooster-koek first ever...

This guy almost ran into me...

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That was another day to remember :lol: :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 14, 2009 11:46 pm 
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@ingrid60 thanks for turning the page 8)
@Janeli and billyf, it was cheetah at last, Our first KTP cheetah and followed up from our January mother with four subadults in KNP :thumbs_up:
@BasDutch :thumbs_up:
@Pumbaa, cubs were all over the place, real bundles of energy, roosterkoek...was tasty :thumbs_up:
@p@m it was a great first night :dance: :dance:

As said, we could now tick off cheetah from our wish list...of course there's no limit to the number of sightings...

Only towards the end of our previous trip did I read in the 'Official Information Guide':
"An effective way of Badger-spotting in the Kalahari is to look for two or more pale chanting goshawks perched low in a tree. Often there is a badger nearby."

We had passed many PCG without realizing what could be around. So this trip we took note.

DAY 4: 12 JULY 2009

No hot water in the morning... water pipes froze.

Went north from Nossob for a day drive, hoping to get to Grootkolk. it was a misty morning.....

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Nothing exciting at Kwang WH.

At Bedinkt WH there were lots of tracks around.....continued down the road and a KTP traffic jam....
3 vehicles parked...

Our First lion sighting.....on day 4!!! 3 of them :dance: :dance: :dance:

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The grass was lomg and heads just showed...

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A vehicle came from the left.

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And then a vehicle from the right.

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They did not stay too long and they were on there way over the dune towards the river.

We went around the corner to see if they would appear, but they didn't so we continued on our way...

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sat Aug 15, 2009 2:53 pm 
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DAY 4 cont...

A vehicle was parked....
Saw this Batleleur Eagle

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They pointed out a spotted eagle owl on a nest, right hand side of tree...
They were our neighbors that night in Nossob and the next night at Bitterpan..

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At Langklaas WH and eagle was sitting near the WH but we were to slow/fast to get a pic or any chance of id

Then in sight of Kousant WH's windmill
4 PCG flew up from just off the edge of the road into the nearest tree....

STOP!!!!

There must be HB nearby!!!!! (what the book says!)

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One flew back to the little tree in front of us.

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A vehicle approached from the front, saw us taking pics and moved on...

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After watching/waiting a couple of minutes...
out popped a HB :dance: :dance: :dance: and then another followed :dance: :dance: :dance:
SO 'shot' from the hip :cam: when see reviewed the pic she was chuffed that she caught the one, when I looked I showed her that she had in fact got both :lol: :lol:

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Cropped from previous pic

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She caught the first leaving the road and the second entering the road, at the point where we reversed :clap: :clap:

They disappeared into thick bush :cry: :cry:

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 Post subject: Re: "We will be Back" to KTP
Unread postPosted: Sat Aug 15, 2009 11:19 pm 
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@salamanda enjoy the memories :D
@billyf, yes SO was quick on the draw :lol: :lol:

At Lijersdraai we kept on the 'main' road and saw 10 BEFs !!

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A pair black shouldered kite circled over head

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Were we to be in luck with cape fox?? :pray:

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NO :cry: just another BBJ :D

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We were headed to Kannaguass WH expecting to see the leopard
Instead we found 2 Conservation International Vehicles having a picnic :doh: :doh:

We did not make it to Grootkolk as time was running out so turned around and headed back towards Nossob.

Passing the picnic they were packing up and one gentleman was closely inspecting the leopard tree, standing between the dam and the tree :naughty: probably thought the tree was dry :wink:

We were soon overtaken by their 'convoy' and they disappeared in a cloud of dust...we were doing close on 50 kmh :evil: :evil:

A herd of wildies were gathering and heading towards the road

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And soon they were crossing one by one...

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We took the Lijersdraai loop and counted 17 BEFs

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Another PCG? (No a Hawk Harrier (Gymnogene) thanks @ann-marie and @ruud for the id and confirmation.)

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Back at Kousant this wildie was licking the cement..

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And then scratching his nose

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And this fellow? (A rock kestrel thanks @anne-marie)

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pregnant? certainly a poser :lol:

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Kwang was a hive of activity

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The youngster in front was chasing others away

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And these guys were enjoying the last rays of sunshine

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A rather battle scarred wildie

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A rather hairy youngster

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Some more road crossers

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A tawny eagle?

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Mr reliable

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And not 2km from Nossob 2 BEFs, the lowest we had seen them

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And that was the end of day 4 trip.....went to the hide that evening and only saw a couple of BBJs

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And now KTP, March 13, in living colour


Last edited by RichardJ on Sun Aug 23, 2009 6:34 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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