Monday, 28 February 2011

27th February – Starry, Starry Night....and other Random Things!

Photo of the Day
Argyle Male - what a beauty!
Daily Synopsis
Why Hello!!! I haven’t done this for a while, but decided to post a blog update of my last week’s worth of ‘activities’ that I thought you all might enjoy!
Starting off with the most current news, and that being a little staff bumble yesterday evening with Dave and Thea.  We went out hoping to find Kuhanya leopardess, but she had moved on from her morning’s resting place, west of Argyle Dam, but it didn’t bother us much, as a bit further west, Grant was sitting watching Argyle Male, so I went and joined him.
Sadly though, he was not in any mood to do anything, and lay very contently in the grass a few metres from Grant’s vehicle, not even raising his head when I pulled in to join Grant – it is amazing how relaxed he has become!!!  Both Jacky (Grant’s tracker) and I commented on the fact that Argyle male now behaves like our dear old (and legendary) friend, Mangadjane!  I stuck around for a while and eventually the brute of a leopard that is Argyle male rose to his feet, walked past the car and stared intently into the bush.  It was clearly too much for him and he went back to sleep!!!

Grant's guests and Argyle male leopard
Being the perfect evening, I decided to head to the airstrip to try my hand at photographing the Milky Way...I didn’t really succeed, but here is what I got – a little more practice needed I think!!!  Still, to try and capture the real beauty of the stars at Motswari is almost impossible, but I hope these photos give you some idea of what a magical sight it is!

An amazing starry night at Motswari: stars to the west, an impala herd with the Milky Way above them, a dead tree framing the myriad of stars, and our trusty Land Rover parked beneath a canopy of stars
Rewinding a bit to last week, I took a few days off to be with my family on Ingwelala, the adjoining reserve to Motswari, and also treated them to a night at the lodge!
High Tea at Motswari

Game Drive Time - Raffaela and one of the Mahlathini male lions

Coffee break at Entrance Dam

Coffee time at Entrance Dam - Note Chad drinking Mom's Tea (mom the one making the tea!)

Petros, Carmen and Ekki at Buchner Koppies for a sundowner

Could have explained the slight headache the next day!

DAve in action at in the Boma for the evening meal
We struggled a bit for game there, and on our two drives at Motswari, but still had a great deal of fun, especially as the main purpose f our first drive into the depths of the reserve were for something far more important than a rhino!  I would like to congratulate my brother and his girlfriend on their engagement in a truly wonderful setting!  All the best guys!
...the answer was 'YES!' in case you were wondering - well done brother!

Petros reaching new heights

a magical setting for a special moment

The champange never went to waste!

Me and my family enjoying a special afternoon!
Besides that, here are a few of the photos I got during the week...
Impala ram in the last light of the afternoon

one of the Xinatsi Clan hyenas

a secretary bird - the first time i have seen in the reserve!

Thousands of queleas gathering at a dam on Buchner

red-billed queleas

the rush to the water!

drinking time

Another 'terrible' end to the day - This is Africa!

Shy Jacaranda Pride male lion roaring on Motswari Northern Access

Impala ram's with a breeding herd of elephants in the background

Breeding herd of elephants drinking at a small pool in the Nhlaralumi

Another breeding herd of elephants making their way to a dam with a storm approaching in the background

Despite the brewing storm, we only got a few millimetres of rainfall
Lastly, going back almost a month, I received a few photos from some guests that we hosted at the end of January, that joined us for our Motswari Zebra Hungry Lion Football Club practice session, and I thought I should share them with you!  Thanks to Steve and Peter  for the photos!
Motswari Zebra Hungry Lion FC (click on the photo for a larger view) - Back row from left to right: Stephen, Johannes, Thandi, Jackie's wife, Grace, Dave, Tiyani, Peter, Patrick, Tim, Elliot, Marka, Chad
Front Row: Pedro, Sinah, Eugenia
(i just want to know why i am the only one who dressed up like a zebra????)

Motswari Zebra Hungry Lion FC (click on the photo for a larger view) - Back row from left to right:
Thandi, Jackie's wife, Stephen, Grace, Dave, Tiyani, Peter, Patrick, Tim, Elliot, Marka, Grant
Front Row: Johannes, Sinah, Pedro and Eugenia

The supprters! Thania, Tembi, Grace, Petunia, Jackie's wife

Elliot "Ronaldo" Mgiba and Dave

The game slowing downa  wee bit!

Chad, Eugenia, Thandi and Peter

Peter and Elliot
Well I am heading back to Johannesburg for a week’s break – I look forward to hearing about what I miss while in the Big Smoke!
Take care until next time!


  1. What a way to start my day reading your blog Chad.

    Absolutely fantastic and some really magical photos. Too many to mention just how wonderful.

    The sky at night is so beautiful, no artificial light just makes the stars that much better. I must try some night photography next time I am south of the equator.

    Loving all the photos and the news, thanks so much.

    Enjoy J'burg.

  2. A big thanks Chad for the update what a brilliant way to start the week. Love the Stars shots, its fantastic how clear they look, and it does give a sense of how beautiful the night sky must look there. The photo of Shy Jacaranda Pride male roaring makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up, I can just imagine the sound echoing through the night.
    Congratulations to your Brother, and his Girl friend on thier engagement from all the Guys from the Wild About Animals Forum. Please give them our best whishes.
    Have a great week off in Joburgh. Look forward to hearing from you when you return

  3. Really amazing skies!!!! Thank you soo much

  4. Congratulations for your win on fb, a great photo and I see from your blog, just one of many great pics!
    Well done!