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2016 VID. COLLECT. Ed and Gail’s Low bandwidth version,

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ekoppen
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2016 VID. COLLECT. Ed and Gail’s Low bandwidth version,

Unread post by ekoppen » Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:54 pm

It has been a challenging year but here we are back to present our 2016 travel report.
We arrived at Skukusa on October 28 for the first stop on our annual five week tour of Kruger. Enjoying a good night's sleep after a long trip, we were out the doors at first light the next morning, to survey the surrounding areas. We were amazed at what greeted us.
As we traveled east toward Tshokwane the landscape looked like a world war one battle field. Signs of the prolonged drought were everywhere. We proceeded north from Tshokwane toward Satara and found every creek bed, reservoir and waterhole dry. Bone dry.
Especially disappointing was finding Nsemani reservoir and Girivana water hole dry, two of our favorite view points and of course no game anywhere around them. The ravages of the drought were evident everywhere.
As we traveled central Kruger, from Pretoriuskop to the savannahs' south of Satara, we were shocked and disappointed.......no game! no Zebra, no wildebeest, no Cape buffalo. Only Hippo carcasses and small scattered herds of Giraffe, Elles', and scattered groups of Impala. It was by no means the herds we were used to seeing in past years.
With the disappointing absence of the grazers and browsers, we were faced with only one choice, the predators. We have always been satisfied with the number of cat sightings we enjoyed in the past, especially Leopard and Cheetah. Never did we have a year like this though.
Leopard-24, best day, four cat sightings
Cheetah-32, best day, eight cat sightings
Lion-146
Duplicate sightings of the same cats?

Three Leopards may have been responsible for six sightings on different days and times.

Four Cheetahs (Mom and three juveniles) were responsible for two sightings and a kill on two different days and times.

Lions.....who knows?

Our methods for hunting the big cats last year was good and this year was even better. The luck of the draw is certainly a factor and our approach seems to be working pretty well so we’ll stick with it.

This and that in Kruger
Just some of "This and That" We are off to a slow start but leopards seem to be more plentiful. The sightings get better though as we continue our adventure
https://youtu.be/-Xs-LNsPCNw

Nice Lady Leopard on H 1-4
Nice lady leopard posing on the way to Satara
https://youtu.be/9lMdg6tlI_Q

Lions, Lions;
While travelling south on H1-3, near S 125 approaching us from the opposite direction were eight lions on the tar. Four females in the lead, followed by four males.
https://youtu.be/pEVu9ubDpN8

Cats north of Tshokwane
Yes, another leopard and two more today. We went back to the viewpoint 4k north of Tshokwane and the two brothers shown earlier were still there. The injured one was a pathetic sight. We reported the injured one to a ranger in Skukusa who said euthanasia may be necessary. He said he would check it out and two days later the lions were gone and we never saw them again. I’m sure the loyal brother misses his sibling.
https://youtu.be/fvtbDIk0tNg

Lounging with the Lions
In the morning we enjoyed a quiet, peaceful lion pride. In addition to the adults the pride was made up of older cubs and several juveniles. Little did we know that several days later we would meet up with the cubs and juveniles again. Without any adults present the cats were anything but peaceful. They would be better described as juvenile delinquents.
https://youtu.be/y9MUo6Si_SY

The Loop, N. S36, E. S125, S H1-3
A nice mix of giraffe, buffalo, elle’s and leopard number seven. After seven days of "scouting" the central region, we would next be heading to Punda to see what the northern region holdd.
https://youtu.be/NOX5yOcS9Oc

Punda Maria hide and the Fever Tree Forrest
A nice mix of Elles’s and Nyala
https://youtu.be/xvPBd2QcsLk

Pundas Buffalo, Hyena and Yellow Bill Stork
Buffalo mud bath at Punda hide and Saddle Billed Stork, then back south and on to Oliphonts
https://youtu.be/q4I5ge_Yc-0

Hippo Tragedy After crossing the bridge traveling south, over the Oliphonts river, on H1-4, we came across what looked like a dead Hippo about six meters from the tar on our right. As you will see as the video opens, it was still alive, but just barely. The next day it had passed on. One week later as we traveled the same way, a mystery. No carcass, no hide, no bones, no sign it had ever been there?? Would it have been moved by the park as too great a distraction for travelers so near the road??
https://youtu.be/tv0p8rPKw1Q

Juvenile Delinquent Lions
We’re back to Satara for seventeen glorious days and our first morning out we meet up with the cubs we had met in the “Lounging with the lions” video earlier. The little darlings were just playing but I think others at the scene as well as us were starting to feel this was not a good place to have a lion’s canine through the sidewall of a tire.
https://youtu.be/5T3y9BP1qWw

Five Cheetah & One Waterbuck
Cheetahs come face to face with a male Waterbuck. At the time I thought it was a coalition of five cats but after reviewing video while editing I’m inclined to think it is an adult female with four juveniles.
https://youtu.be/tc29liuX4oQ

Jackal pups love to play
Just across the tar from the Satara gate and thirty meters south on H1-3 we find two dens of Black Backed Jackal pups. Two dens that we think are separate litters. What do you think?
https://youtu.be/h25xH7ZQhhw

Wild dogs of Orpen Rd
Big pack of about twenty four dogs. Nice condition
https://youtu.be/SDLSLce_asY

Lion and Cheetah at Rietpan & Mlondozi Part 1
What a morning. We arrive early at the Rietpan and Mlondozi pans and there is game. Zebra, Wildebeest, Impala all over the place and……cats and more cats
https://youtu.be/5zh2QmfHReY

Lion and Cheetah at Rietpan & Mlondozi Part 2
Just more cats………………..
https://youtu.be/g_76IgDFGdE

Lions at Rietpan Part 3
And more cats. Back to first Lion kill and then on to another…..busy morning
https://youtu.be/_7HVfQupcFU

Parade of Elephants
Beautiful migrating herd of Elle’s, heading south. Good shots of youngster having breakfast on the run.
https://youtu.be/xPvEZRzzPdc

Mating lions on H10
It’s what lions do!
https://youtu.be/FvrPh7tPq9I

Cheetahs on kill, Rd H7
Two Cheetahs on kill on road H7. Looks like adult female and juvenile
https://youtu.be/bLfAZTPeIxY

Do Warthogs live in trees
As we were driving along H1-3 (Yes the narrator was wrong….again) 15 meters from the tar we find a leopard napping. We didn’t know that a warthog was hiding in the tree directly behind him.
https://youtu.be/UNpUduaJoAE

Satara to S36 to H1 3 again, stormy day
Another exciting morning. Snake, leopard and stormy day
https://youtu.be/PdlBhnHRBDw

Cheetah mom and three kids having fun
Yes, they love to play, showoff and just have fun.
https://youtu.be/m5id6XIZrwE

Little lions, very little
Cute kittens, wild dogs and hunting male lions. A great start to the morning on H1-3 on our way to Nkumbe.
https://youtu.be/6xXNUUsTBts

Patient poser near Nkumbe viewpoint
The start of the most incredible day. What a sighting. it lasted over thirty minutes with no cars until nearly the end. Yes, I kept calling it a she and her but near the end of the video I started getting suspicious. Day’s hunt continues on next video.
https://youtu.be/AUMq-_zaVB

The most memorable one day hunt, ever
By the end of day it was hard to believe the events of the morning. After having a late breakfast and returning to our rondavel I told Gail I had a hunch where number four might be. She decided to stay so I went on alone……yes, quite a day!
https://youtu.be/VQBXyDsxHvA

The leopard creates a circus Part 1
We have never seen so many cars show up for the sighting of a leopard. S125 was parked on both sides of the road with traffic backed up in both directions. H1-3 was parked bumper to bumper on the west side of the road. (See photo at the start of the video) “Us” shows the location we were parked at and never moved from. We knew where the ditch was the leopard disappeared into, fifty meters away and where he was sleeping.

It was fascinating. As cars drove by we would ask them what they saw. Invariably, they would say they caught a glimpse of the leopard. Really?

And then when the circus truck or whatever it was, arrived, I couldn’t resist any longer…..I just had to editorialize, I couldn’t resist.
https://youtu.be/G35VL0xoErc

The Leopard creates a Circus, Part 2
Where is our leopard? He shows up right where he’s supposed to right on cue at about five thirty PM. He makes a try for the warthog kill if you can believe it, but the flash cameras from the hill are more than he can take.
https://youtu.be/um3W87scTZw

Cheetah mom and kids find their breakfast Part 1
Cheetah mom and kids chase, catch, take down, feed, protect and depart. Yes a start to finish morning with the cats. The location is on H10, five meters off the tar near S1129 junction It could not have been a better viewing of the event that took most of the
https://youtu.be/PesFcaS16F8

Cheetah mom and kids find their breafast Part 2
It isn’t a casual breakfast though. First, they have to eat fast before another predator comes along and in this case fend off an army of vulture. Beautiful cats doing what they do.
https://youtu.be/VawD5YtYMyI

Ground Hornbills on parade, no cats
Interesting birds, especially when they are hooting while they’re hunting.
https://youtu.be/j4sgj1gAfPo

Warthog tree gets anothe Leopard or two Part 1
Dramatic Leopard meeting that’s was also hard on the Warthogs
https://youtu.be/i1wVRXxIudo

The Warthog tree gets another Leopard or two Part 2
Just hanging out with the winning leopard
https://youtu.be/DK-H2YiAanAPART 9 of 10

Lions, cheetahs cross paths S128
Lions on the hunt, looking for zebra breakfast. Cheetahs cross paths with them
https://youtu.be/uInO9XlU-Uo

A Very Handsome Lion
He’s an exceptionally handsome cat. Mostly unscarred and moves with the majesty of royalty. We have been fortunate to meet up with him and his pride on several occasions. His brother looks like the cowardly lion in the 1939, Wizard of Oz movie, played by Bert Lahr.
https://youtu.be/HeshpUmFqtg

Cheetahs in beautiful morning iight
Beautiful early morning sun showcases the big cats
https://youtu.be/JRQYQOvZsH4

Elle's cooling off on a really hot day
Elle’s enjoying mud baths on a hot day
https://youtu.be/RC-vHCD_8pk

The Culvert Inspector
As we were driving north to Satara on H1-3 we met a car stopped in the middle of the road. The occupants immediately informed us that a leopard had walked across the road right in front of them and as they watched it on the side of the road it just disappeared. We suggested that it might have crawled into a culvert to escape the heat. I don’t know if they believed us or not but they just nodded their heads and said thanks and off the went.

Aha! I said to Gail, we’ve got another leopard. We pulled to the side of the road and waited maybe five minutes and there he was.

He may have been an old (Elderly)…..takes one to know one. He seemed very skinny it it may have been the reason he was stalking warthogs for an east kill in the culverts.

Photographing his exploits was not that difficult but weaving through and hop scotching around the cars that suddenly surrounded us was a real challenge. But we made it.
https://youtu.be/VvnnJFrftGQ

Will there be more leopards in 2017
What do you think?
This is the last video of the collection and the end of our 2016 Travel Tale
https://youtu.be/aIBEMHwyJEM

*****2017*****
Skukuza Oct 27, 28, 29,30,31
Orpen Nov 1, 2
Letaba Nov 4, 5
Oliphants Nov 6, 7, 8
Satara Nov 9, 10, 11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25, 26
Lower Sabi Nov 26, 27,28,
Crocodile Bridge Nov 29, 30

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jjames04
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Re: 2016 VID. COLLECT. Ed and Gail’s Low bandwidth version,

Unread post by jjames04 » Wed Feb 22, 2017 5:22 am

Hi Ed,

What a great video sequence again this year. :clap: :clap: :clap:

You sure had great luck with the cats this year, what a treat to go through your TR.

Cheers,

Joe

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Re: 2016 VID. COLLECT. Ed and Gail’s Low bandwidth version,

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Wed Feb 22, 2017 7:57 am

Thank you very much. I have started to go through these videos. There are some wonderful experiences.

So far, I have really enjoyed the Culvert leopard and the delinquent lions. :D It is going to take me a bit of time though to really appreciate all the videos. :thumbs_up:
The bird doesn't sing because it has answers, it sings because it has a song.

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ekoppen
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Re: 2016 VID. COLLECT. Ed and Gail’s Low bandwidth version,

Unread post by ekoppen » Wed Feb 22, 2017 11:15 pm

jjames04 wrote:Hi Ed,
What a great video sequence again this year. :clap: :clap: :clap:
You sure had great luck with the cats this year, what a treat to go through your TR.
Cheers,
Joe


Hi Joe,
Yes, it was a great sighting year and somewhat unusual for predators.

I still haven't forgot about getting up your way to see a rocket launch. Just not enough hours. Maybe 2017 will be a little better.

Best to you and yours,
Ed

*****2017*****
Skukuza Oct 27, 28, 29,30,31
Orpen Nov 1, 2
Letaba Nov 4, 5
Oliphants Nov 6, 7, 8
Satara Nov 9, 10, 11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25, 26
Lower Sabi Nov 26, 27,28,
Crocodile Bridge Nov 29, 30

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ekoppen
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Re: 2016 VID. COLLECT. Ed and Gail’s Low bandwidth version,

Unread post by ekoppen » Wed Feb 22, 2017 11:26 pm

Meandering Mouse wrote:Thank you very much. I have started to go through these videos. There are some wonderful experiences.
So far, I have really enjoyed the Culvert leopard and the delinquent lions. :D It is going to take me a bit of time though to really appreciate all the videos. :thumbs_up:


Hi MM,

Yes Kruger again shows it's full of adventure and surprises and 2016 was no exception
The culvert inspector was really working hard the day we found him. I'm sure this is how all the pork dinners are showing up at the warthog tree.

I'm glad to see you found it. I always appreciate your comments and observations.

*****2017*****
Skukuza Oct 27, 28, 29,30,31
Orpen Nov 1, 2
Letaba Nov 4, 5
Oliphants Nov 6, 7, 8
Satara Nov 9, 10, 11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25, 26
Lower Sabi Nov 26, 27,28,
Crocodile Bridge Nov 29, 30


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