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 Post subject: Kaapsedraai's WCNP: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 10:17 pm 
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
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Location: Bellville, Cape Town
It is August 2013 which means it is time to head in the direction of the West Coast to experience nature's flower power. About 100km from Cape Town and an hour later, we reached the West Coast National Park.

As it is a Friday, 9 August 2013 and a public holiday, the entrance to the park was extremely busy, but seems that the SANParks staff got it worked out and was prepared as we did not have to wait long before we were in the park.

We got the Kruger feeling and drove slowly while lots of cars speed past us thinking we were a bit 'slow'. But we were looking for birds and enjoyed the veld. As we drove closer to the Postberg reserve, we got this view of the Langebaan lagoon from the road.
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Then we saw a sign indicating bird hide to the left. As bird hide lovers, it was a no-brainer and we stopped at the Abrahamskraal bird hide with the house where one can overnight just behind it.
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We were imagining that we were at Lake Panic - WCNP's own 'Lake Panic'. There were a lot of activity on the dam as can be seen from the hide.
A lonely sleeping Flamingo with a pair of Cape Shoveler (Kaapse Slopeend)
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Little Grebe (Klein Dobbertjie)
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Brimstone Canary (Dikbekkanrie) (...if not mistaken)
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Yellow Bishop (Kaapse flap)
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Then a first for me - African Rail (Grootriethaan)
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We also spotted some Cape Weavers, Red-knobbed Coot, Common Moorhen and Red-faced Mousebirds. Some Ostriches walking in the direction of the house.
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After we enjoyed the birdlife at the bird hide, we were entertained by lots of Southern Double-collared sunbirds (Kleinrooibandsuikerbekkie) along the road.
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Coming up next, entering the Postberg Nature Reserve section...to be continued.

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2013 10:49 pm 
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
It is so ironic, considering - here we are on the far south-western side of the country while we discussed our upcoming Dec trip to the most opposite side of the country, the far north-eastern side - Kruger. :hmz:

As we entered the Postberg section of WCNP, we drive past a dam where we spotted some Flamingos
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Then a tortoise with chewing some green grass
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Further up the road in a distance another dam with some Sacred ibis.
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Some Bontebok grazing in the veld full of flowers.
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Then we got some beautiful patches of wild flowers - yellow, orange and white...
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We were getting hungry, so we headed in the direction of Plankiesbaai for a picnic.... to be continued.

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 3:39 pm 
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
It was time to have lunch and so we headed to Plankies bay for a picnic on the rocks with a beautiful view over the sea. But on our way, some more flowers and scenery.
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On our way to Plankies bay, these Bontebok looked a bit concerned with the influx of all the cars in their territory.
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Also some birdies - Cape Spurfowl (Kaapse fisant)
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And another related member, Grey-winged Francolin (Berg patrys)
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We enjoyed the beautiful views while having lunch.
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It was time to see how the flowers look like on the lagoon side of the Park and we enjoyed more flower carpets.
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A mouse in the road enjoying something to eat.
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Then some danger lurking - Black Harrier circling
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Fortunately, he did not spot the mouse :dance:. Our next stop was at the lagoon side of the Park ...to be continued.

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2013 1:30 pm 
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
We were heading to the lagoon side of the Park where we enjoyed wonderful rock formations, scenic views over the lagoon and other interesting creatures.

...but before I continue, it needs to be recorded that our friends that accompanied us, IF and his wife IF, are the type of friends one will enjoy having on a Kruger trip :whistle: . IF's wife, IF, made sure the chauffeur was well looked after as they fed me with 'dadelbolletjies' (date balls rolled in coconut) al the time, which I enjoyed very much .

On our way we spotted these birdies, first the Cape Bulbul (Kaapse tiptol)
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and then this Karoo schrub-robin (Slangverklikker) ...I think...
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These are the interesting rock formation with carpets of white flowers.
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A rock that looks like a hand...
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and then this whole in the rock.
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A Cape girded lizard baking in the sun.
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Here is a beautiful scenic view over the lagoon with Sadanha in the far left, Schaapen island in middle and the town of Langebaan.
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Another scenic view with the mountains at the back covered in snow.
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A zoomed view of the mountains and snow.
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As we made or way back towards the gate we came across some open plains with lots of antelope grazing. Being fed with a another dadelbollejie, we stopped to take some pics of the antelope...to be continued

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2013 8:34 pm 
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
As we were making our way back towards the gate, we got a beautiful birds eye view of the landscape from the elevated rocky area. Next to the road some more white flower carpets...
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Far below one could see some eland and zebra grazing on the open plains.
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Then a herd of eland grazing on the green grass covered with white flowers...
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Further on, some more eland, but this herd was on the move.
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Some babies/young ones also present
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Two eland testing each other's strength
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Was not sure if this eland was hiding from us taking photos or his horns were itching or decided it was time to do a bit of gardening.
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Another eland posing beautifully with some Cattle egret close by.
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Besides the eland there a lot of other animals in the area as could be seen from this picture - ostrich, bontebok, zebra - 4 in 1 pic
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Then this was not all, there were also springbok and gemsbok...to be continued.

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 20, 2013 11:41 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
As mentioned in the previous post, down on the open grass plains, besides the Eland, we also saw some other animals namely some Mountain zebras
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A bontebok relaxing.
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Then some Springbok making their presence felt.
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And the beautiful gemsbok at first relaxing, then stood up and showing us how he does the 'scratch-dance' - first with the foot and then the horns.
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We have enjoyed some great sightings of these beautiful animals in the WCNP. It is definitely a pace where one must spend a weekend as we still wanted to visit the Geelbek visitors centre and the two bird hides, but it was getting late. Some final concluding pics to share next... to be continued. :thumbs_up:

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:30 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
anne-marie wrote:
what the Springbock is saying :hmz:
never saw Mountain Zebra, magnificent animal :clap:
a chance to be well horned :lol:
and still the white... colourful carpet :thumbs_up:

anne-marie...the Springbok was asking 'where are all the YR'...I think :hmz:
You also got me interested to see what is the difference between the Mountain Zebra spotted in West Coast NP compared to that in Mountain Zebra NP. They seem to be from the same family i.e. Equus zebra zebra, but there was a distict colour difference it seems.

Mountain Zebra in WCNP
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Mountain Zebra in MZNP - they are truly magnificent to see.
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Burchell's Zebra we find in Kruger NP
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_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 10:36 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
Ending the TR with some close up pics from our West Coast NP one day trip.

A Karoo schrub-robin looking at his reflection in the water while visiting the Abrahamskraal bird hide
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..also a Cape weaver giving us a stare.
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Some clos-ups of the flowers - Bokbaai vygie
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some Gousblom
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White rainy daisy
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and some Sporrie.
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We have seen quite a few of these Cattle egrets around.
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The Park has really touched our hart and we will definitely make some plans to go back and spend a weekend here. The months of August and September seems fully booked already, hence need to plan in advance. I hope this TR has inspired others to also pay this park a visit when the opportunity arises. With its friendly staff, beautiful setting and variety of fauna and flora it has once again exceeded our wildest expectations. Thank you West Coast NP!

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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 Post subject: Re: West Coast National Park: Flower power in Aug'13
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 6:27 pm 
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Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year & Sighting of the Year - Small Creatures and Insects (2013)
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Posts: 2649
Location: Bellville, Cape Town
Following this TR and the interest shown to visit this park one day, motivated me to forward an article to Wild Card. They have published it on Wild Card blog.

It is a 2 part article and can be accessed via the following links:
Flower power: West Coast trip report - part 1
Flower power: West Coast trip report - part 2

Enjoy :thumbs_up:

_________________
Trip Reports: Kruger, West Coast, Addo, Storms River & Wildernis, Kruger NP Feb'14, Wildernis Ebb & Flo Apr'14
Now busy with Kruger NP Dec'13 and Table Mountain- mood today


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