Using sightings groups/apps - good or bad?

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Using sightings groups/apps - good or bad?

Unread post by Scipio »

OK, all must please read this in the context it is posted. :thumbs_up:

Ossendryver, I have a HUGE respect for what you have done and achieved with the Sightings Applications. :clap: :clap: I am not at all offending your endeavours at all. 8)


I have today seen the carnage this can cause on Kruger roads first hand to a sighting reported on the App, from USV's nearly rolling the vehicles, to normal Kruger goers nearly killed by speeding Sightings users toward a pride of Lions. This is not speaking of the 2 dead Monitors, one seen driven over, a few dead birds(Francolin) on the way to the sighting. I do think that any subscriber MUST adhere to a code of conduct, maybe set up in your App. or some kind of rules. :hmz:

Now this is not at all an affront to you and your work, but a call for some kind of control over the unruly behaviour of App. followers. :thumbs_up:

I hope this post is seen in the light it is written, and I do hope nobody will rip this apart and see it as an oppertunity to attack the app. But with something going this big, you are going to need some rules. :thumbs_up: Otherwise, it is going to go sour. :wink:
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Re: Latest Kruger Sightings

Unread post by Rookie2009 »

:hmz: :hmz: Had a similar experience this year in march. Lions were seen on the tar road near skukuzza and after it was posted in the app people went crazy - driving into the bush, shouting and rushing to the point were the lions were - about 200 meters in the bush sleeping !! Not a good sighting, but after 30 minutes nearly 70 cars around. I'm sorry to say but i think people can't handle these informations well, especially those who have one day in the park and rush from one app-sighting to the other. I'm happy to find the animals by myself, watching them alone or with 2 or 3 other guests - kruger is not a zoo at all....just my opinion
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Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Kruger

Unread post by Grantmissy »

Technology has made it possible and very convenient for nature lovers to know within an instant of a sighting, the exact location and to drive to that sighting immediately. It is most probably a very good thing if a person wants to see as much as possible within a short period of time including very rare sightings or for a person who does not want to drive around for a long time wasting petrol and then they do not see what they want to see. I am not sure in which category I fall, because I fully support technology, but I prefer doing slow trips in Kruger free from technology always anticipating a surprise around the next corner and even if I do not see anything in terms of lions, leopards etc for a week I am very happy to go home with the memories of all the sparrows and squirrels that I have seen, thinking perhaps next time we will see …

Maybe the future visits to Kruger will be optimally enhanced by technology and the less effective Kruger visitors (sightings wise) driving around with a paper map, paper notebook and pen :D and scanning the veldt looking for animals and birds will become less?
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by Rooies »

This is exactly what I want to avoid. Is the idea not to 'discover' your own sightings? If everyone is informed about good sightings, will it not lead to sardine run scenario with all and sundry chasing like mad dogs to get to the scene? One thing that you will not find with me and my group is a Black Berry, GPS or two way radio.
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by barryels »

I am fully behind you on this one. People don't want to have the "trolly's" like we call them near any sighting, however people are rushing all over Kruger as a result of new technology.

I don't think I will ever adapt to visit Kruger other than driving a certain route and whatever I see is fine with me. My idea of a visit is to actually enjoy nature (sights and sounds) and not only certain sightings.

I don't think that technology will ever be able to influence our older generation's outlook on a visit to Kruger. I actually budget to "waste" petrol, because that is how I want to experience Kruger.
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by Grantmissy »

I also think nothing can replace the magical Kruger experience of finding your own sighting because that is what it is all about for some, I think :thumbs_up:. To be out there using your own observation skills and alertness without having technology guiding you where to go to see lions or other guaranteed sighting.
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by Duke Ellieton »

I don't even look at the sightings board, just rely on Miss Sharifa to find me the great sightings :whistle:

While we are in the park, never turn the radio on, cell phones off except in camp at night - fun is in finding the animals yourself.
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by billh »

This is an interesting topic. I'm a gadget junkie and as soon as I saw it, I downloaded the sightings app onto my wife's iPad but can't bear to read it.
We've been fortunate to visit many reserves and be driven around by expert guides. After the first day we stopped looking knowing the guide would have seen everything before us. I hate to say it but it became less of an adventure.
The magic of the KNP is all about the discovery. The anticipation. For more than 30 years we travelled the roads and never saw a leopard. Not in a tree not on the ground but we never doubted that they existed nor that one day we would be successful. And this year we were.
For the "once in a lifetime" visitor I believe the technological aids could be invaluable and really enhance the experience but for me - thanks but no thanks...
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by cheetah2111 »

That is all cool 8) I'd just like to point out some facts on updates which many possibly do not know :)
Not all these update mediums can be thrown together in a pot as one and the same.

If you understand the process, it will change your perspective on the uses of sightings updates. It does not cause the swarming effect that some people speak about. Here is an example of how the Blackberry Updates work that I am a member of:

You have 30 members in a group. A few groups are connected on the same 'network' of Blackberry groups.
Each Blackberry Group has one admin. After the updater puts a sighting on his group (provided they are in an area with reception) it is only the other 29members of that group that can read that update. There are usually only about 2 people in one group in Kruger at one time. The admin (being a normal working guy) will eventually find time to look at all the updates on his group and broadcast it across the other groups in that network.

- So let us say I put down a lion sighting at 04:45 in the morning ...
-It is only 29 other members that can know about that Lion sighting at this point
-Then the admin gets the chance to check the updates and broadcast at 07:30
- Only now can a substantial number of people see my update

What is my point? The updates are usually delayed by hours. I will still get updates from first light in the afternoon today. It is therefore not conducive to rushing around and creating traffic jams and bad behavior.The point of these BBM sightings networks is more geared towards increasing your knowledge of where things are being seen over the year. The Blackberry Network I am a part of is a community of nature lovers that like to stay connected and hear what your mates are seeing :D I am sure 90 percent of BBM updates users will tell you they will not go out of their way to go to the next update :whistle: There is the thrill of finding things yourselves, but a knowledge data base that is better than say the forums :wink: On the day, a pin up board will probably be the best information on where to drive to see what you seek :thumbs_up:

Then there are instant update groups ... to my knowledge twitter/facebook/whatsapp are all connected and huge numbers of people receive the updates as soon as they come through. That is a whole different kettle of fish :lol: But those who are prone to speed to the next Lion sighting, would anyway have done so using the pin up boards at camps, or popular knowledge of the best roads (case in point - the S100 speeders in the morning). The mentality of speeding to the next lion sighting has always been around. It is not technology that is the villain here.
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by Crested Val »

I would say "Each to their own".

I personally agree with Rooies, BB, Bert, Barry et al, and like to find my own animals/birds.
There is no fun for me to be told where to find things (unless on a game drive)

Even if we meet a car coming in the opposite directon, I feel like it's cheating if they tell us there is a lion 2kms away just in the bush, or a leopard on a termite mound.

However if other people like to be updated on sightings, that's perfectly ok with me, and Cheetah's point about it not causing everyone to run to one place causing havoc is a very valid one.

As I said "Each to their own".
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by judik »

For me the app is the drug fueling my addiction :P
I love reading about the sightings,if there is a video i am in heaven!

It won't be of much use to me when i get to KNP because I doubt I will have my phone on
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by Heksie »

barryels wrote: I actually budget to "waste" petrol, because that is how I want to experience Kruger.

Now we are talking Barry :thumbs_up:
i have allocated R2500 for my Nov Kruger trip and R3000 for my Dec Kruger trip for petrol
So YES I will drive my car into exhaustion and i don't care because I know that it means that I will see many spectacular things from ellie dung with mushrooms growing out of it to ellies making that dung :tongue:
I am part of the BB group but I will not go out of my way to a sighting, I drive my route and if there is a sighting close by I do check it out. It will not cause me to speed or change my Krugerian behaviour. I drive at my own leisure, spending 30 minutes with a chameleon or 10 minutes taking kiekies of fishies in a stream. So no technology will change the way I make Kruger special for me.
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by okie »

We go to Kruger because we want to be there , not because we want to look at other people's sightings .
And anything we see , we enjoy , because that sighting is uniquely our own :)
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by billyf »

Cheetah, I understand your point about the sightings network and that its not really live".
However, if the Safari guides have a BBM network going, it does certainly become live, and then you have 29 green trucks all rushing to the scene of the crime :roll: :roll:

For me - the park is all about the experience and the anticipation - "what's around the corner" :wink:
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Re: Quick, effective, convenient access to sightings in Krug

Unread post by SAF »

Interesting topic L :)

I agree with you cheetah.i am on these chats and on the app and I find it really thrilling to read the sightings
On a daily basis, maybe hourly :)
I know of at least 20 people that use to laugh at me going to the park, but after joining the groups and the apps, they have become Kruger fanatics!

I have been in the park and you happen to be in the same area and take a drive past there to see
If there is any activity, sometimes you are rewarded

Typical example :
My bro was in the park last week and was coming from crocodile bridge
They weren't sure skuks or h10
They saw an update 5 cheetahs on h10
No harm, thy tried and they were rewarded
Not only rewarded, the saw these 5 cheetahs in full sprint trying to hunt warthogs

If it wasn't for the groups and apps they would never have seen this once in a lifetime sighting!
This sighting was on all the groups, apps, Facebook and being school holidays, 4 km from lower Sabie, there
Were only 4 cars there for about an hour

I was in the park this week, saw updates of leopard with kill on s30 and cheetah on s29
Took a slow drive down h10 , s29 male cheetah walking on the road and i was the only car there
Left there went to see any luck with the leopard
Got there impala in tree
Waited over an hour and she came towards the tree and climbed up
Got the best photos of my life!
I really owe it to the guys from the groups and apps
Did not see 1 vehicle that was out of place or driving recklessly, mayb I was fortunate :D

I think people can abuse these reports, but majority of the people it is about meeting new friends on the chat
And the best part of it we are all Kruger fanatics!

I have also taken note of the different prides, wild dog packs , cheetahs and leopards
It helps when planning your routes, you know the different territories.

Let's us try and see the positive

To the guys on the groups and apps, you guys are doing a great job!its not easy what you guys are doing!
Sacrificing your guys personal time to satisfy us Kruger fanatics!

I would like to thank Ronesh, Nadav , Japie and all other people directly or indirectly involved

I have made some great friends on these groups and apps :dance:
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