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 Post subject: noel Another photographic TR Dec 2010
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 10:33 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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I was able once again to be in the KNP between Christmas and New Year (fast becoming a tradition now), scraped together some funds, booked late, and could get 5 nights 28th Dec 2010-1 Jan 2011, only at Pretoriuskop, which camp I love, it has a great atmosphere. Intending to leave, as I usually do, at 04:00, I overslept, and only got going at 06:00 which meant 2 lost hours in KNP. Uneventful trip, though I knew that once I was in the Park it would change to VERY EVENTFUL trip. Stop over at Pick n’ Pay in Nelspruit to do last minute shopping, and the obligatory and traditional koeksister, fill up the tank and it was off arriving just before 11:00. Only to be met by that most horrible of sights-a very long queue of cars. A long 15 minute wait, then we were allowed in, and then it was the human queue next. They were very slow at reception, for me that is, but the queue moved reasonably well, breezed through the booking, and I was off to find a spot to enjoy my coffee and koeksister.
Had a wonderful time, great sightings, experiences and memories. Some scary, some plain interesting, and one sad. 5 nights in Pretoriuskop meant 10 visits to Shitlave and Transport Dams, 10 trips down Napi Boulders road, every visit enjoyed to the full.
For this TR, I thought that instead of it being random, like my last one, this one would be also random :tongue: . Well a sort of orderly random :roll: , meaning I would post photos, first of flowers, then of insects, reptiles and amphibians (of which there was only one, but thoroughly enjoyed that sighting) birds, mammals and scenic/panoramic pics. I did think in posting one of each in batches, but that is too much like hard work. Besides, looking again at all these photos is not good for my health :tongue: .
I also got to meet some forumites, which added to the enjoyment of my time in the Park. I better not try and remember all to them, (the grey matter is going black fast) lest I get into trouble and it will be

Let me start with this photos, dedicated to the wonderful forumites I met during my time.
Seen in Skukuza Gardens
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And then some more photos, dedicated to all forumites.
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Cheerio

Noel


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 10:42 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Forestgump :thumbs_up:
While my internet connection is good, here are some more
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Cheerio

Noel


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 10:10 am 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Mel@nie-you are KNP addict deluxe- I see your post made at 02:00 in the morning. Dreams and coffee- :hmz: Good KNP combination. Yep, I am also missing the Park very much.
FC-great to see you here-connections still going strong.
Pumbaa-Good to have you here too.

Here are some more flowers! Posting before the cricket match between SA and India starts later today.
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This one is going to get me into trouble. When I saw this, I immediately thought of Meandering Mouse for some reason :whistle: . Those bristles are certainly meandering. And then there is the senility and menopuase segments :) .
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Cheerio
Noel


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 5:54 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Wildflowergirl-glad you made an appearance and in the Park :D
Anne-Marie-My apolologies-will post 6 at a time-at this rate this TR will last until the next time I am in the Park.
Right, onto insects.
This was the last "sighting" before I exited the Park. It was a really mean animal. Everytime I pointed my camera at it, it started to wave those pincers at me-frightening sight. Flapping them like those flippers on a pinball machine. It made me think of the song by Jim Groce- "Bad, bad Leroy Brown, the baddest man in the whole darn town, badder than old King Kong, meaner than junk yard Dog". Mean. I could only manage one photo and reversed so he could continue crossing the road without threatening me.
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Under a leaf in Skukuza.
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Dung Beetle
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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 6:31 pm 
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This fellow followed me all the way home to Jhb. Found it one of my bags-beautiful companion to travel with, albeit hidden.
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This colourful guy on my windscreen as I entered Pretoiuskop, and I hoped he would hang around for me to take a shot decent shot. He disappeared when I stopped, so this is through the windscreen. Very colourful.
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This robber fly sitting on the fence at Berg n Dal
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Another mean looking scorpion like insect on my windscreen.Image

Something was brewing here-maybe something starting with B...
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Dragonflies and butterflies coming up


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 6:44 pm 
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Thanks Shrifa and Duke. I gather Sharifa enjoyed being Chauffeured around the Park.
Onto some dragonflies.

This one also on the fence at Berg n Dal
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This one had an interesting pattern on its wings
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This one at Lake Panic
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Also set myself a challenge of catching one in flight, which is difficult. These 2 are the best of the bunch
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This is a big Dragonfly, buzzing around Lake Panic
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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 6:56 pm 
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Butterflies were abundant as usual, always a joy to see.

First up is a very PC image. I entitle it "Tri-partate" alliance, a reference to the dominating feature of SA political life. Some will object to associating these beautiful creatures with this political alliance, just remember where they find themselves. :tongue:
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And another interesting Dragonfly seen at Lake Panic
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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 7:19 pm 
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Bushbaby30 :thumbs_up: Did you not get to see those birds-they were there almost every day! Though I should mention that I did not get as good pics as I had hoped.
Toko, you are welcome :thumbs_up:

Before I stop the posting exercise for the day and move onto reptiles, I'll post some images of road kill, which is regrettably part of any visit to the Park. I mention that I had a sad experience, but this was not it, but something else which will be somewhere in this TR. Road kill, besides making you sad, also makes you mad.

Saw this Thread snake on the road between Pkp and Skukuza, and I was excited to see it. So stopped little off the road to take some photos, and then realised it will soon be crushed by a passing vehicle. So frantically waved at all passing cars to slow down, have a look and try and avoid running over it. About half an hour later, a driver from Narina Tongo?? lodge came by, he also got excited at seeing this, and promptly stopped, got out. with the intention of moving it out of danger, only to discover it was already dead. A great pity, as it was a beautiful specimen. :evil: :evil:
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Then there was this Chameleon, which was still alive when I arrived as you can see from the different position of its tail. Not a pleasant sight. I stayed there a long time, in the hope that some bird would come and put it out of its misery, but that was not to be, and the next time I passed it had been flattened. My apologies to those who do not like this, but I hope that it will at least contribute to more careful driving in the Park.
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This I believe is a large legless Skink, a beautiful specimen as well. It's head was crushed. :cry: :cry:
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And last, this beautiful bird, a raptor I think. We all know that you have to be travelling pretty fast to kill any bird, so this I reckon was speeding. Here I come to the Park to see all its beautiful birds, and this is what I see :evil: :sniper: :sniper: Not being a malicious kind of person, I silently wished the following for the driver "may you have four flat, unrepairable wheels somewhere outside the Park". :whistle:
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Have a great weekend, until next time.

Noel


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2011 9:35 pm 
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Thank you for your comments FC, Kamadejo, Pumbaa and Rookie2009. Mposthumus, amazing that we saw the same cricket.
Right onto the amphibian and Reptiles.

This stunning little Water Lily Frog seen at Lake Panic :dance: :dance: . Very close to the hide, and you could reach out and touch it, it was so close. Saw it in the same spot on 3 seperate days. The best part of this sighting was sharing it with other visitors, and then hearing the ooohs and aaahs-it's so cute, which indeed it was. It also presented some challenges to people who arrive at Lake Panic with lenses longer than my arm. One guy, when he saw it, tried very har to get a pic of it with his 500mm lens, to no avail. Eventually went to get his macro lens, which had to be right next to the frog from it to be of any use. I thought the frog was going to make a getaway. Eventually it was left alone. I was so happy with this sighting, and took a lot of photos of this guy, but for Anne-Marie's sake :tongue: I will post only a few.
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Such beautiful blue-cross eyes.
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Onto reptiles. Saw only one snake during my time here, and it was in Skukuza camp (that will put Skukuza out of bounds for certain forumites :twisted: ) Took the pathway along the river and came across a guy probing with a thin stick between the staggered bricks. On enquiry, I was told that there was a green snake between the bricks which is what he was tryng to pry out with stick. :sniper: poor thing. it was eventually left alone, having resisted this effort. I tried to see the snake, but could only catch glimpses of its green body, enough to tell me it was a Green Water Snake, or as I know it, Natal Spotted bush snake. So out came the Camera, settings on Mactro, and these are the images.
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When the hive of activity subsided, and for which I waited, it would gingerly come out, hoping it can escape These are the pics. When I left, it was still there, hiding. Poor thing. It ouwld have to wait until dark before it could make its escape. At least it was safe from the Green Pigeon and Purple Crested Lourie that made an appearance close by. :dance: :dance:
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Ok enough photos for this posting.


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 12:56 pm 
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Anne-Marie- :wink:
Thanks Kamadejo.
Flutterby-welcome.
Wildflowergirl-glad you're enjoying them.

Some more reptiles (while I steal some time at the office) This Chameleon made it across the road-perhaps because it had its tail up :D
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Would have loved to have taken a full pic of this orangy-red lizard, also seen at Skuks. All the activity meant it too slipped into the bushes, not to be seen again.
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This one seen on some road
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This very big fella at Transport Dam.
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Reptile postings will end soon-then its onto birds.


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 2:36 pm 
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Katja, have no idea what kind of Lizard, except that it was orangy-red, with a bit if black. Quite fat too. Right, last postings of reptiles.

This rock monitor lizard crossed the road at such speed-barely had time to take a few pics. In the 2nd pic you can sense his speed-it looks like the front section if off the ground. I got another sense of the speed of this animal when I arrived at Gardenia Bird Hide-crossed the path in front of me so fast I could not get a pic.
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This Water Monitor at least stopped after crossing the road, and posed for a photograph.
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The Molodozi monster was around.
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A ghecko at Pretoriuskop
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Some amorous tortoises.
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Terrapins were sticking out their necks as they usually do
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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 2:35 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Thanks Crested Barbet and Mposthumus :thumbs_up: You glued to the PC Screen? ADDICT :lol:
Hardly any pics of Crocs, though I did enjoy watching them early in the morning at Sunset Dam. I preferred watching the Fish Eagle trying to catch some fish.
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And onto the birds- of which there are quite a few. Let me start with this episode. Picture it with me. So I arrive early in the morning at Transport dam, I am alone there, and park the car under the tree to the left. There is the fear that I shall be cornered here by an elephant herd. Savour the moment, breathe in the fresh air, quick scan for signs of life. Nothing much. Time for Coffee and rusks. Coffee made. LOUD TOK TOK TOK TOK TOK. Metal knocking on glass. Heck, I nearly spilled the coffee all over my pants its so loud. Two quick thoughts come to mind. Elephant telling me I'm parked in his space. Nothing in the rear view mirror so that cancels that fear. 2nd thought-how the heck did Interpol find me in the KNP :whistle: . Well that knock was pretty much like a policeman when he comes-a-visiting :rtm: . Turned out to be this friendly neoghbourhood fellow.
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Once the nerves had settles, it was back to my normal friendly self-Come inside, have some coffee and rusks. It did :big_eyes:
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Except it was interested only in my rusks. Well, as they say in the adverts-"now you've ruined our friendship". he was duly shooooed away, but not until after I had taken a few macro shots.
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This heron at Shitlave dam was in a restful mood in the grass.
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And my favourite bird, Carmine Bee Eaters also made an appearance at Transport Dam.
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Cheerio.


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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 2:52 pm 
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Thick Billed Weavers doing what they normally do-nest building.
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This I think is a white crowned Shrike?
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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 3:04 pm 
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Did not get to see many Bateleur, especially not for pics. This the only decent one.
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 Post subject: Re: Another photographic TR
Unread postPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 3:14 pm 
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This was a very special sighting-A juvenile Fish Eagle, close to the bridge. Except it never turned around for a frontal pic.
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One of the parents was not far away.
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The resident Heron at Sunset Dam
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