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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 8:00 pm 
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More pics taken in Karoo NP during our April 2006 trip:
ImageImage
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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 8:32 pm 
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We went up in our previous Defender (Big Blue). The going was quite rough and lam spent a lot of the time walking while I nursed the old Landy over the rocks. No pictures to prove it but the Afsaal (old shepherds cottage) is a brilliant place to spent a night. We had a magnificent thunder storm which turned the Karro plains into a dam 3 inches deep which made driving even more interesting. It's the solitude up on the high plains that makes this park special.


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Unread postPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 2:07 am 
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Thanks for the stunning pix, DB. Looks like yet another of the RSA's hidden gems 8)


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 11:27 am 
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It is most definitely one of the most beautiful NPs we have. As you said Arks, a hidden gem. Want to go back and will do the 4x4 trails as well. :)

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Unread postPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2006 3:32 pm 
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Yes, Arks it is a gem, hoping for a return visit next year.
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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 12:55 am 
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Gorgeous photo, Bouf, thanks for posting it 8) This is clearly a park I will try to visit! I think that I may have driven through part of it, or the area, possibly before it was proclaimed a national park? I know that I visited Graaf Reinet and that whole area is austere, but stunning!


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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 7:53 pm 
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Karoo is just outside of Beaufort West which is +/-200km west of Graaff Reinet.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 8:15 pm 
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Location: Schoenmakerskop (near Port Elizabeth)
The new NP near Graaff Reinet is the Camdeboo NP.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 24, 2006 2:26 pm 
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arks wrote:
Thanks, DB and j-ms :redface: :redface: I definitely an RSA geography refresher


There is nothing wrong with your SA geography, Arks, but I cannot say that for most of your compatriots.

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Unread postPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2006 4:04 pm 
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Hi All

Just to let you know we'll have a new KAROO GURU soon :dance: who will be willing and able to answer some of these questions, and I'm sure provide a wealth of knowledge and insight about the Karoo National Park-I for one can't wait as I have yet to visit this park...so watch this space!

PS I'm also looking for pictures of the Karoo NP to post in our gallery and public sightings gallery if any of you have pics you're willing to share, please pm me!

Thanks!


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Unread postPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2006 7:24 pm 
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Hi new Guru

Question 1

Can you stay at the Afsaal without doing that looonnng 4x4 trail?

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 3:10 pm 
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Hi

Oh dear it seems as though technology is not co-opertaing with our newest guru...she's offline at the moment but we're trying to resolve the problem!

The short answer to your question is that uou do not have to do the long 4x4 drive to get to Afsaal. You can drive on the outside of the park and enter the park through one of the gates...hopefully we'll get some more info soon


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 Post subject: Karoo Guru
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 10:46 pm 
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I have never been to the Karoo NP but love the Karoo landscape. I was reading a book "Mysteries of Planet Earth by Dr Karl Shuker" where he writes about the 'woolly cheetah'.
This unusual cheetah arrived in London in 1877 from Beaufort West.
It was larger than normal cheetahs and its body appeared thicker with stouter limbs.Its fur was dense and woolly especially on its necks, tail and ears.There is a beautiful painting on Pg 10.
It had tawny blotches rather than the usual polka-dot spots.
The secretary of the London Zoological Society said it may be a discreet species (Felis Lanea), At the end of 1800 two further specimens were also recorded from Beaufort West.
From that time none has been recorded and it is presumed to have gone extinct.
Some speculate that it was not another species but a chinchilla albino or a mutant of a normal cheetah.
Very interesting!!

I always thought that the Karoo NP is the perfect place for cheetahs. Sanbona in the little Karoo which is smaller than Karoo NP introduced cheetahs into its private park with great success (www.sanbona.com)
Furthermore on the national geographic site there is an article about cheetahs getting injured while hunting due to their speed. Most of the cheetah relocations are in bushveld type environments not suited for cheetahs
Is the Karoo NP not the perfect place for cheetahs???
What is the view of the rangers in Karoo NP??
There is also historical evidence that Elephants roamed the Karoo, again Sanbona has released elephants but the little karoo ecosystem is probably better suited to this huge mammal?.


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 6:01 pm 
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Looked through the new Karoo National Park pamphlet, but could not see anything there about cheetah reintroduction.
But the Mountain Zebra Pamphlet did mention that Cheetah would be reintroduced there in 2007, after an absence of 70 years. I also know that Cheetah & Wild dog will be introduced in the northern parts of Addo Elephant National Park in 2007/2008, when the predator proof fencing is finished.

They do mention Bat-eared Foxes, Aardwolf and Caracal as predators in the Karoo Pamphlet.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 12:16 pm 
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This is the what the karoo guru has to say-she's still struggling to post and so if forwarding me her responses

Quote:
Cheetah did occur naturally in the Great Karoo, and the Park may be a suitable place for reintroducing them. This is being considered currently, although all relevant factors in terms suitable prey numbers, effects on the numbers and distribution of prey animals, proper planning in case of break-outs etc. will be considered and a proper management plan for cheetah will be drawn up before re-introduction takes place.

The records of the "wooly cheetah" are very interesting because the genetic variation in the existing cheetah population in southern Africa is very small. These individuals must have lived at a time before the cheetah population crashed to a very low level. Whether the difference was because of chinchilla alleles or another genetic effect, it appears that is was lost from the population.

Elephants were also recorded in the Karoo, but like most other species of animals they were transient-moving around throughout the Karoo and further as long as food remained adequate for their needs. For this reason elephant need very large areas if they are to be reintroduced. Elephant are not considered for reintroduction into the Park currently as it is considered too small. Thanks for your interest




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