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 Post subject: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:36 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
Hi All
I'm going to try and do a daily TR from Satara.
Let's see how it goes

We entered the park at Malelane gate on Thursday at half past six in the morning. To do this we had to leave home at 3 am. It rained lightly just about all the way to Skukuza. We saw a couple of elephants after entering the gate and only some Impala , Zebra and Wildebeest at Afsaal. Esto and his family entered at Croc Bridge and we were to meet at Tshowkane for breakfast. Just before Leeupan someone stopped me at pointed out that one of my rear wheels was quite flat. We the rushed to Tshokwane where I changed the wheel. When Esto and his family arrived they showd us picture of their cheetah sighting around Molondozi. After breafast consisting off Sosaties and rolls we took the S37 on to Satara
We found this Ellie taking a bath
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and some Zebra

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and a Swainson's Spurfowl in a tree

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Close tothe Sweni hide I heard something strange and found that I had a second flat on the right front wheel. Fortunately 2 guys from the vetinary service arrived . They pumped the wheel and told me to proceed to Satara. They would follow and fill the tyre again if need be. I sped to Satara doing up to 80kmph on some of the more open stretches. We barely made Satara . After checking in we found that they could fix the 2 wheels in Satara. Esto and the rest of the party went on a afternoon drive and found 2 male lions on the S100

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:00 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
After the tyres were fixed I found that one of them were badly damaged though it still didn't deflate. So today 22 nd we were on our way to Hoedspruit. On the way we saw an elephant just outside Satara on the H7

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A large troop of baboons at Nsemani

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and a Guinea Fowl tree

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At Hoedspruit they didn't have the correct size tyre and in the end I replaced both flats with a near fit.

On the afternoon drive we saw a nice herd of buffalo lots and lots of plains game and lots of birds you will find on the duckling challenge one of these days. We also found a nesting ?? saddlebilled stork

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and these youngsters

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All and all a very good day. It's great to be in KNP :dance: :dance:

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 9:18 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 15, 2009 8:20 pm
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Location: naudesfontein
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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:36 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 818
Location: Bethal
Heksie wrote:
Lovely sightings and can't wait to see the birdies that you will conjure for our duckling challenge :popcorn:
:


Heksie thanks but be carefull what you wish for it might look something like this :lol: :lol:

Image

Yes I don't know what it is :wall: :wall:
But I know it was crying for it's parents :big_eyes: :big_eyes:

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 8:22 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
Saturday 23 March

Esto was supposed to pick us up just before 5:30 am but his 1 year old daughter did not have a good night so her mother decided the two of them would try and sleep. We then picked up Esto , his son amd my Mother. The S100 was on the menu this morning. We saw some Impala, Zebra , Wildebeest and lots of waterbuck. Even took some nice bird pics :naughty: . We turned South on the s41 and after a couple of km's foung lioness approaching the road with 2 young cubs. (6:44 am)

She stopped and the 2 cubs started playing Unfortunately mostly behind a bush

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Around 7:20 first the cubs and then the mother walked of behind the bushes.

We drove on and saw some elephant in the river
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One of the elphant next to the road had a damaged trunk
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It was not a nice sight when she picked up her trunk and the front part stayed down revealing the 2 holes running up her trunk. But she was in good condition , the wound had already healed and it didn't look as if it bothered her

Some more scenes from the s41
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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:08 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
Sunday 24 March

Once again we left early . Today Esto , his family and my Mother were on their way back home.
We drove with them all the way to Tshokwane On the way we saw

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A lioness in the riverbed close to Tshokwane but to far off to take a picture Unless you wanted to do a spot the animal quiz. But a very quiet morning in all. After coffee and rusks Esto and his party left for LS and home. We decided to do a trip to Leeupan.

On the way a bay Elephant decided it was time for a drink
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This Pied Kingfisher greeted us

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We drove back found lions on a kill between Nkaya Pan and Sweni but the grass was so long that we didn't stay long. We saw a lioness and a lion walking though.
Back at Satara I started on this TR and a dove decide to do some preening right in front of the chalet
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The afternoon we did a trip to Girvana again (decided to give the s100 a miss and it was to late for anything else)

Some Girvana pics
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On the way back
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And at Nsemani a late afternoon scuffle

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 12:50 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
Monday - 25 March

This morning my SO decide she wanted to sleep in so I took the early morning drive all alone.
Had coffee at the gate at 5:20 am. I'm not going to say anything about the roads I drove today . I saw Rhino 6 times today. It was a privilage indeed. Just after the gate aI had a Hyena in the road and some Wildebeest. I saw quite a number of solitary elephant bulls. In the early morning light before sunrise a found this Ellie. He mad me realize what a tusker really looks like. Unfortunately he was far off so the pic is not great. I'm not sure of the Id but think it might be Nwashinangana
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A bit later after some more wildebeest and zebra (Saw lots of them) this waterback stood next to the road

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And then the second rhino sighting. I get the impression that the Rhinos are much more skittish than they used to be , but that might just be my feeling
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This was the only single rhino sighting.
Just yesterday we wondered where all the Groundhornbills were as we had not seen any.
This changed now as I found a flock of 8 and had 3 more sightings during the day
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They were all in trees and then after they came down I took this pic
Image

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 1:05 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 818
Location: Bethal
25 March - continued

I saw rhinos again and a bit later found these next to the road.
Look at the height of the grass and you can appreciate how difficult it is to see something smaller
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I then picked up my SO from camp. Found some more rhinos and plains game as well as this mother and baby
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Stopping at a waterhole we could saw these Impala rams.
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While we wre looking at the Impalas this Bateleur arrived
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Something that we also have seen very little off is buffalo. So we were very glad when we arrived at Nsemani and this sight greated us
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We had a pretty quiet afternoon drive but could take this pic for Esto's son. He turned 3 today

Image

And that was another lovely day in and around Satara

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 2:20 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 818
Location: Bethal
Tuesday - 26 March

Today we travel the h1-4 then the s90 all the way to Bangu , then the s89 and then back down the h1-4
Before we reached the S90 we saw a breeding herd of elephant. It is a very quiet morning . It is also cloudy so taking pics was not really on. The grass on the S90 from Gudzani to Bangu is really long. On the s89 we found this Kudu and isn't this how a Kudu bull should look ?
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At the H1-4 a blackbreasted snake eagle
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And closer to Satara our first reedbucks
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The afternoon we decided to take the trusted S100. We had a bit of rain so no dust this afternoon.
A S100 traffic cop
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We saw Waterbuck 7 time before we reached the Mananga turnoff and 12 times in total on the afternoon drive.
This guy also used the S90
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And these were also all over
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As there was still rain around we were fortunate enough to see this
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and a saddlebilled stork fly by
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As we reached the H1-4 the late afternoon sun came through the clouds and we found a breeding herd of Elephants
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And if you have the correct light taking pics becomes very easy

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 2:25 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
Some more pics

Image

Image

And the sun sets on another lovely KNP day.
Tonight chicken on the grill, some Breyani rice and salad is on the menu

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 6:43 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
27 March
While we packed the cameras etc. this mornig a lion roared South of the camp. We left early again and after the umpteenth car turned into the s100 we continued down to the H6. JUst past the turnoff we founf a lion in the road. But unfortunately a fool in fornt off the queue was in a HURRY AND CHASED THE POOR LION INTO THE BUSH. On the H6 is a Hyena den and we stooped to look at them.

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At the Sweni hide we stopped for coffee and this wagtail and his mate visited us

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On the s100 we found these 3 ladies
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Doing what lions do

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On the afternoon drive we spotted the Ostriches on the H1-6. There are quite a few around. We counted a flock of 26 at one stage.
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We turned towards Timbavati and I took my only European Roller pic. These birds just don't want to be photographed
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On the way back we found a breeding herd of more than 150 elephants.
Image

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 6:44 pm 
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Location: Bethal
Before I become lazy again I'll also do today's TR

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 7:15 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Posts: 818
Location: Bethal
28 March
At gate opening time everyone turned South so up North we went.
Blakbacked jackals and Hyena in the road. Then onto the S90 some elephants ,wildebeest and Zebra with lots of Spurfowl and even more gunea fowl in the road.
Image

It was a misty morning and the grass was really wet.
Image

Some Amur falcons
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and one of many , many Roller pics
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Then a sidestriped jackal with two pups
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At Gudzani dam we found 2 young lion males crossing the road
They looked as if they were looking for their family and was quite thin
Image
Down to Nwanetsi we went and on the way
Some Kingfishers gave us a display
Image

We had breakfast at Nwanetsi
Later we found mating lions on the H1-4 North of Satara
Image

On the way back this tusker to a dust bath
Image

Crossed the road and proptly took a mud bath

Image

What will tomorrow bring ?

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:35 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
29 March
Today we travel down te H1-3 and onto the S126 towards Sweni and Mudsazenie. It is very quiet.
We see a couple of Impale and zebra but that's about all .At Mudsanzenie we do a body break and have some coffee. It's drizziling now and then. We take the S36 to shimangwaneni dam. Here a lioness is waiting for us on the dam wall. To far to take pics, but still lovely to look at. We turn around driving back towards Orpen.
This beauty is waiting for us but she/he doesn't like the rain and wet grass
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Image
Image
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Being all by ourselves mada this very special

We carry on , it is now raining quite heavily, and on the H7 found some wet vultures
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The afternoon we took the S100 and found these Ostriches

Image

and some Zebra

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Satara sightings 21 March to 7 April
Unread postPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:44 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Bethal
30 March
I took the early morning drive alone. I took the S100 there and back found these Groundhornbills lots af plains game , some buffs and lions (no pics)
Image
Went back to camp had some coffee and drove up the H1-4
Lots of Ellies and some buffs
Then just before the Tibivati turnoff This guys with his mother and the rest of the family
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This guy and his ladyfriend in the long grass
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At the Timbivati turnoff a large herd off buffalo - 100's But they were lying down for an early morning siesta.
On the Timbivati road
Image
On to Ratelpanhide
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