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 Post subject: Re: Tick infestation at Marakele
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 3:42 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 3:52 pm
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Location: Worcester South Africa
Hi

This must be a case of bad luck.
We were also there the previous weekend - 26 of us and not a single tick bite that I have heard about.

My advice would be professional medical advice - there may be a better product on the market.

What I don't understand is the many ticks on one person - userely they bite and you are aware of them being there and pull them off.

(@ Mags: The fires were quite far from the camping ground and did not solve this problem.)

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My latest trip report to Addo during June 2009:
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 Post subject: Re: Tick infestation at Marakele
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 3:56 pm 
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Location: Red sand, why do I keep thinking of red sand?
Ticks do seem to prefer some people, just like mozzies.
The factor would seem to be the CO2 levels, but how it works I don't know.

Also watch some trees. Here in Holland they like to sit in Hazel bushes, and drop themselves onto their prey from it.

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 Post subject: Re: Tick infestation at Marakele
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:21 pm 
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In use a tin of aerosol spray that you spray on your clothing and it lasts about 2 Washes ( bytacol or something like that ) its quite expensive but lasts a long time. . I bought mine from the camp shop.

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 Post subject: Re: Tick infestation at Marakele
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:39 pm 
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Talking about ticks, please do yourself a favour and listen to the programme on the SABC radio , RSG, Sunday mornings 11H30 called "Hoe verklaar U dit" (How do you explain this) Readers put questions, which are dealt with by a panel of experts.

This past Sunday, a question about ticks was asked. Unfortunately I was on the road and didn't here the full story, but as DuQues says, ticks and "tampans" are attracted by or CO2 emissions. To establish the infestation of ticks, the researchers use dry ice, which is frozen CO2. The put it in an empty beer can and bury it in the ground. The next day they dig up the cans and count the ticks.

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 Post subject: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 7:01 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 23, 2011 6:32 pm
Posts: 7
Hi...

My first post, so sorry if I do make a mistake here :)
Me and my wife am planning a two day trip to Marakele in middle March. Will be staying at Tlopi tented camp. Just a few questions:

1. Have the buffalo been released back into the park, as I read somewhere they were kept in bomas, untill cleared from "corridor sickness", as the report stated they would be released December 2010?
2. I read the wild dogs were translocated from the SANparks side(to Tuli),due to fences being broken and not enough manpower to stop this. Were any new wild dogs released again in the park, or are the only wild dogs left on the "PTY" side, and thus not accesible to SANpark visitors? I read the PTY and SANpark would lift the fences, but I presume this has not yet happened?
3. Reading about the park it became evident that lions and leopards are hard to spot. Seems the park has about 14 lions. We plan to take a game drive with our sedan once a day, and also one with the SANpark rangers @ R160 per person every day. Will they be able to get us to the lions, and which area are they most likely to be found?
4. I read about a "predator park" that opened in the area....with the purpose of showing people lions and other predators they might miss in the park. Is this located near to the park and in conjunction with SANparks?

On closing note, I would like to thank SANparks for giving the "middle" south african the chance of still seeing the big 5 at affordable prices. I was shocked to see the prices of Madikwe, Pilansberg, and most private game reserves in the country.


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 Post subject: Re: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2011 7:36 am 
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Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:02 pm
Posts: 79
Location: India
Hi

I was in Marakele in early Feb, so can give you recent feedback. I also hope to put up a trip report sometime later during the day and you can hopefully get a better idea.

1) No the buffaloes are not in the park as yet.
2) I read the same thing about the wild dogs, and no we did not see any or any signs either. We did however see a brown hyena :). The fences with Pty are still up.
3) I would strongly suggest a vehicle with a high ground clearance rather than a sedan. There are not that many roads in the park and you wouldn't want to miss out or give your sedan a really tough time. The ranger is a fantastic guy called Sidney - very knowledgeable and friendly. Definitely do the game drive because some tracks are out of bounds for individuals but allowed for the rangers. We did not see the lions but saw pug marks along the fence. Again the road that you can traverse on is limited, so the best chance to see the lions will be to do the evening drive with the ranger. The lions reportedly patrol the perimeter of the park and Sidney told us that he had seen cheetah regularly, so you might get lucky. Lekganyane drive from Tlopi is where the cats are, but like I said it is a limited drive for private vehicles.
4) We drove past the predator park - I think it is called Marakele predator park, but never went in and have no idea whether there is a sanparks involvement.
Hope the above helps and have a great time

Cheers
Sandeep


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 Post subject: Re: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2011 9:49 am 
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Location: somewhere in Bavaria
Good morning Black Wildebeest!
We arrived yesterday in J´burg after a 3 nights stay in Marakele Tlopi Camp. The camp is awesome with a stunning view! There were not much birds around but on the second day a Fish Eagle couple came to join us!
I had the same problem like you to find helpful informations about Marakele. We had to decide between Pilanesberg and Marakele and I wanted to go to Marakele.

Its definitely a place to relax but not a place to spot much animals. The bush is very, very thick and its difficult to see the animals. But we were lucky to find lots of elephants and giraffs. The Big 5 part of the park is not a park for normal cars - you need a 4x4 only the tar road up to the mountains is fine. I spoke to a guide and yes, the buffalos and wilddogs are not in the park any more. They put the buffs to KwaZulu Natal and the dogs out of the park. We didn´t see leopards and lions, also because there are not much roads in that part of the park. But the area is beautiful!!!!!!

If you know that its difficult to spot the animals its okay! We also saw lots of sad things, like lots of littering and some other things which definitely not belong to a nature park!!!!

Hope that all will help you for now. When we will be back I will write a TR and some more informations about Marakele.

For us, we really enjoyed the stay at Marakele its really a place of freedom!!!

MG

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 Post subject: Re: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:13 am 
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Joined: Tue May 19, 2009 2:15 pm
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Location: Johannesburg - too far from the closest Sanpark
Buffalo have recently (end of last year) been re-released on Welgevonden, which shares a small border with Marakele. This should mean that the area is now disease free. The new buffalo on Welgevonden were supplied by Sanparks from what I understand

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 Post subject: Re: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 24, 2011 11:06 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 23, 2011 6:32 pm
Posts: 7
Hi Guys....

Thanks a lot for your replies, highly appreciated.
I just don't understand why SANparks would release buffalo in Welgevonden and not into their reserve also? Could someone shed some light on this matter?

Sorry if what I say now, makes someone angry, but this is what I have read.
My biggest worry at the moment is going to Marakele and finding no game drives/ walks. Why I'm saying this, is because I read a lot of post last night, and on three occasions noted people complaining that no game drives/walks was available when they were there.
Me being a honest State worker, and on a modest salary, cannot afford a bakkie, and will have to do with a sedan. Thus I will have to use the game drives, to see more of the park, and increase my chances of seeing other animals, maybe even the shy big 5.

I did contact Marakele Bush Lodge AKA Griffon Camp, which as I understand also falls within the borders of the reserve.
The owner emailed me, and had the following to say:
Leopard is regularly spotted around lodge, seems to stay in area.
Two male lions was seen yesterday moving right past the lodge.
Lions are seen on regular basis when game driving.
I do not think this is a sales pitch, as I was just asking the same questions to owner, as my original comment placed yesterday.


Thanks again.
Waiting for your reports and pics of recent visit in excitment.


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 Post subject: Re: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 7:02 am 
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Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:02 pm
Posts: 79
Location: India
The report and the pics are up. You can have a look if it helps you decide.

I have no idea about the Bush Lodge, but can tell you that while I was at Marakele there were no vehicles with guests on a game drive.

A possible suggestion that you may like to consider is staying at the Bontle Camping Site. This is easily accessible by a sedan and is next to the main reception where the bookings are done. This way you will ensure you are on the game drive/ walk that you have booked.

regards


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 Post subject: Re: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 12:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 23, 2011 6:32 pm
Posts: 7
Hi Sandeep.

Where you from if I may ask? I'm travelling from the Free State, guess my nick says it all. Sad things is that nowhere in the province you can see the big 5 or big game in huge numbers, maybe a bit in Willem Pretorius and Golden Gate, but that is it.

Well Bontle is nice, but my wife is coming along, and knowing her, she is not keen on sharing kitchen and ablusion block facilities.
We are leaving the kids behind, with grandmom, so there is an element of romance involved :) And being in a small tent just doesn't seem to help the mood.

I saw your pics and reports. Awesome, loved the pics on the ellies, shame about the "strandwolf"

Best wishes.


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 Post subject: Re: Marakele info
Unread postPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2011 1:25 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:02 pm
Posts: 79
Location: India
I am a bit further away than Free State :) - was living in London till last week and now back home which is India.

Let me assure you that you are a lucky man and may I dare say spoilt for choice, even if you live in the Free State. Driving out is so easy and none of the crazy traffic jams that one experiences elsewhere. So whether it is Kruger or Umfolozei or Pilanesberg or even little Marakele, it really isn't that far :).

Aha so there is a romantic element involved here - well you could do worse in life than stay in Tlopi. It is a very romantic place and you will have your provate patio to sit in and sip your wine watching the sun go down - I have no hesitation in saying that the accomodation compares favourably with others that Sanparks has.

By the 'strandwold', I guess you mean the brown hyena??? I believe there are 4 - 5 of them, solitary of course and all stay around the same area. It is close to the western perimeter of the park and no official road, so guess that is why people do not see them. And the positive is that these guys must hang around close to where the predators are - I definitely saw the lion pug marks and the ranger had seen the cheetah quite a few times and leopard as well. So you never know when you may get lucky.

Hope you have a great time

Cheers

Sandeep


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 Post subject: First visit to Marekele?!
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:26 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2010 4:52 pm
Posts: 30
Location: Pretoria
Hi all,

I have been visitng the BIG KNP for a few years now but I want to book at Marekele for the first time.
I need advise and I did go threw the forums for some help but still need to find out a few small stuff.
1. Is there Fuel inside the park?
2. Is there a restuarant or shop?
3. Can I drive ther if I don't have a 4x4?
4. Is there an updated map of Marekele?

All the help will be appreciated very much. :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: First visit to Marekele?!
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 2:04 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2011 9:36 am
Posts: 937
Location: Ermelo
Rooster wrote:
Hi all,

I have been visitng the BIG KNP for a few years now but I want to book at Marekele for the first time.
I need advise and I did go threw the forums for some help but still need to find out a few small stuff.
1. Is there Fuel inside the park?
2. Is there a restuarant or shop?
3. Can I drive ther if I don't have a 4x4?
4. Is there an updated map of Marekele?

All the help will be appreciated very much. :thumbs_up:

Hey Rooster

I cant offer advice but I am interested to know where this Park is??

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 Post subject: Re: First visit to Marekele?!
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 2:34 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2006 12:30 am
Posts: 41232
Location: Worcester, South Africa
Hi Rooster,

Some of the small stuff can be found on this page :
Quote:
Other Facilities:
Shop: In Thabazimbi.
Restaurant: In Thabazimbi.
80km of our roads are accessible to normal sedan vehicles.
Electricity: Only the tented camp and camping site is supplied with electricity.
Fuel: Petrol and diesel available in Thabazimbi.

Wishing you a wonderful visit to Marakele :D


Sheenaugh-Lee, you will find the info you need, here :
Quote:
How to get there

The park is situated in the Waterberg mountain range in the Limpopo Province (formerly Northern Province) near Thabazimbi, approximately 250km north of Johannesburg, in a malaria-free area.
Driving distances to Marakele: from Gauteng is 4 hours and from Tshwane 3 hours.
Travellers can take either:
the N1 to Bela-Bela (Warmbaths) and from there follow the R516 via Mabula and Leeupoort to Thabazimbi
or travel to Brits and follow the R511 via Beestekraal to Thabazimbi.
The office is approximately 12km from Thabazimbi crossing on the road from Thabazimbi to Alma.

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