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Reading the signs

Discuss and find information on the Kruger National Park
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Grantmissy
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Re: The scent of the bush

Unread post by Grantmissy » Mon Mar 26, 2012 8:40 am

Graham 5000 the smell of the bush in Kruger very early on a winters morning just before and during sunrise is great :D. I think the smell is different in summer though, perhaps there is more humidity in the air that makes a difference :thumbs_up:
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Re: The scent of the bush

Unread post by ndloti » Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:22 pm

... particularly on foot , as you walk the aroma of the plants , the dung - rhino in particular ...
KNP is sacred. I am opposed to the modernisation of Kruger and from the depths of my soul long for the Kruger of yesteryear! 1000+km on foot in KNP incl 56 wild trails.200+ nights in the wildernessndloti-indigenous name for serval.

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Chavaluthu
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Reading the signs

Unread post by Chavaluthu » Sat Oct 13, 2012 7:28 pm

Guys a predator is nearby. Where?What? How do you know? Well, the birds told me so..
I love seeing the faces of my guests when 2 minutes later, a Leopard comes onto the road from nowhere. This is how it usually happens. The signs were all there, learning to see them, Well that just takes time. I've learned that a Bateleur & a Tawny Eagle perched together or close by usually indicates a Leopard kill. Or a Hooded vulture alone usually means lions are nearby because they have a habit of eating their scat.
Learning to see through the eyes of my Shangaan tracker opens up a new world. So Share your experiences if you saw the signs.. Maybe Leopards sightings will improve :dance:
He who drinks from the waters of the Letaba.. will return to the Lowveld!

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flying cheetah
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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by flying cheetah » Sat Oct 13, 2012 7:41 pm

Very interesting :thumbs_up: But thst leads me to a question about the Tawny&Bateleur that could indicate a leopard kill. I have never seen pics or heard of raptors that were feeding on a leopard kill on a tree. But I'm sure that most of the carcasses in a tree are sooner or later discovered by some raptors. Are they to scared the leopard could come back before they notice it :hmz:
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Chavaluthu
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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by Chavaluthu » Sat Oct 13, 2012 7:50 pm

Thanks Flying Cheetah for the comment. The Tawny & Bateleur indicate a kill on the ground, Leopard kills are usually well hidden under bushes etc. They are the first to see it most of the time. Hope that makes more sense.?
He who drinks from the waters of the Letaba.. will return to the Lowveld!

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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by Scipio » Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:05 pm

Image

:thumbs_up:

Welcome Chavaluthu :wink:

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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by flying cheetah » Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:13 pm

Thank you Chavaluthu for the quick response :thumbs_up: But a carcass that's even spotted by us humans should also easily been found by the raptors with their perfect eyesight!
Thank you Scipio for that amazing pic :clap: :clap: Where did you take it?
Akukho nyon' endiz' ingahlali phansi. (Zulu)
There is not a bird that flies and never sits down.

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avon vosloo
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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by avon vosloo » Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:19 pm

:thumbs_up: Chavaluthu I like you already - it's all about behavior.

Bateleurs are the early morning risers with the best eyesight that finds the kills that happened during the night before any other raptor. They must then wait for their larger billed cousins to open up the carcass for them to be able to feed on the scraps.

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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by Son godin » Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:08 pm

Chavaluthu,

There is a lot one can observe by looking at the behaviour of animals. Each time I have spotted leopard in KTP, the jackals gave it away in their behaviour of none stop howling or yelping and looking in a specific direction.

It very interesting to learn about the tawny and bateleur. Nearly 4 years back my SO was busy taking pics of a tawny my LO was capturing something on video but aiming in another direction. When asked what he was doing he said he is taking a video of the bateleur. I think I need to find that video and see if there was not more on than the bateleur. Will remember next time. :thumbs_up:

I also read that the appearance of side-stripe jackal signals the presence of lion. The only time I have spotted one I was also lucky to find a leopard not walking to far away from the jackal. Not sure about this one but maybe others had the same experience.

The other interesting one is that you must be on the lookout for honeybadgers when you see black-back jackal and pale-chanting goshawk moving from one bush to another. I have often seen these 3 friends together.
Jan 2018: Next trip to KNP - Tamboti, Talamati, Maroela and Satara

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flying cheetah
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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by flying cheetah » Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:34 pm

Son godin wrote:The other interesting one is that you must be on the lookout for honeybadgers when you see black-back jackal and pale-chanting goshawk moving from one bush to another. I have often seen these 3 friends together.

Me never! But it sounds like fabulous sighting :mrgreen: :mrgreen: Any pics?
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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by neilo » Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:39 pm

Hi there,

Last year in December we found this leopard and cub in tree next to road with small half eaten impala kill.

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image'


Mom was chilled and baby climbing, playing etc . Then a bateluer landed about 180 yards away on the other side of the road. In a flash, mom was down the tree, across the road and after the bateluer, with real intent. The eagle took off, went to perch in a tree, mom came back and went to chill out in the same tree again.

This thread makes sense of it :D . Why a bateluer and a hooded vulture together ?

Thanks,

neil.

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Chavaluthu
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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by Chavaluthu » Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:56 pm

Thanks Son Godin. I have seen the same Behaviour by jackal's often & been rewarded with Leopard. I here Leopard's can be a big threat to Jackals but I haven't seen them in conflict. Also interesting that a Jackal call's as soon as Lion or Leopard is vocal, almost in sync with them?

Pale Chanting Goshawk's are often with honey badgers while they forage, often the Badger flushes out Rodents & Reptiles which is Ideal prey for the Bird. I read that as much as 6 goshawks have been seen with 1 badger.
I haven't heard of the side striped & the Lion's so thanks for that. Very interesting to read about these relationships.
He who drinks from the waters of the Letaba.. will return to the Lowveld!

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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Sun Oct 14, 2012 7:07 am

I like this thread. It has already alerted me to possible signs that I had never taken much note of.

Neilo, that must have been such an interesting encounter with the Leopard. 8) :mrgreen:
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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by pops » Sun Oct 14, 2012 7:22 am

Great thread. Another sign is monkeys chattering excitedly. Look in the direction in which they are looking and more often than not you will see a leopard.

Another hint is impala snorting. If you hear impala snorting and most the herd is facing in a specific direction look which way they are facing and you are likely to see a predator.

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Re: Reading the signs

Unread post by isinkwe » Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:12 am

Great and interesting thread.
I have found many a preditor by watching the behavior of herbivores,
giraffe looking in the same direction= lion
impala snorting and looking=leopard(many times)
kudu staring in one direction=lion
and many others
watching herbivores behavior is very often looked over by many visitors, often causing them to miss out on some fantastic sightings.
Isn't it just amazing how potatoes give us fries and vodka? :D The rest of the vegetables should get their act together :rtm:


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