Monday, 9 May 2011

08th May – Raining, but sadly not cats and dogs!

Photo of the Day
Magical Sunset over Vyeboom Dam
Saturday Afternoon Drive
7 x elephant bulls – Motswari, Camp
1 x elephant bull – Motswari, Airstrip Rd
1 x buffalo bull – Argyle, Argyle Dam

Sunday Morning Drive
1 x leopard (Nthombi female) – Kings, Tamboti Drive
3 x elephant bulls - Motswari, Argyle Dam Link

Sunday Afternoon Drive
1 x breeding herd of elephants – Argyle, Wilkens Way North
1 x elephant bull – Argyle, Peru Entrance

Daily Synopsis
So I’m back on drive and back to my blog after recovering from my little tick bite!  We only had four guests in camp, but it as some great repeat guests that we were delighted to welcome back as much as they were delighted to be back!
The first afternoon they spent much of the afternoon just relaxing and enjoying the group of elephant bulls that were drinking and feeding in front of the lunch veranda. 
We headed out late for drive and bumbled down towards Argyle Dam where we found impala, a lone buffalo bull, three hippos and a wonderful sunset, so we decided to have a sundowner and enjoy the moment. 

Young impala rams sparring
After drinks we went to check an area around De Luca Camp where two lionesses had apparently been seen in the morning, but sadly we came up empty handed and despite driving most of the area, we found no sign of them, or much else to be honest!  Petros did impress the guests by finding a spotted bush snake and a flap-necked chameleon on the way back to the lodge.
During the night, the wind picked up and the distant roar of thunder eventually turned into a pitter-patter of rain that fell for some time.  In the morning we awoke to a fresh feeling bush and one that ended up receiving 32mm of rain! 
The clouds were still about, and the cool weather was ideal for wild dogs, and I told this to Petros...not ten minutes later we were informed that the pack of seven wild dogs had been found in the south!  We persisted in the north scouting for any leopards, but didn’t find much besides impala, elephant bulls and a giraffe.

Elephant bull
We eventually moved south, and helped Giyani with some rhino tracks by dropping Petros off on foot while I went a bit further south to go have some coffee and see the wild dogs.  We saw many more impalas and a nice herd of twenty-odd wildebeest.
After coffee, Petros told me that he had found the rhino not far from where we had dropped him off, but that it had run off to the north-east, so it wasn’t Mtenga-tenga as we had hoped.
Giyani then told me to hurry up as the wild dogs had got mobile and were heading west, so I did, but sadly I was just too far away, and they crossed the Zebanine Riverbed and Giyani couldn’t follow them across!  I was very disappointed in having missed out, but there was some consolation just on the other side of the riverbed.
Nthombi leopardess had been found, and King’s extended their invitation to go see her, so after a short while we pulled in to see her disappear into a thicket as she attempted to stalk two fighting impalas, but sadly they spotted her and blew her cover.  We followed her for a while through some tricky bush, but we managed to keep up, all the while hoping that she would come across the wild dogs that had last been seen heading into the same area.  Sadly though our time ran out and we were still far from home, so we had to leave her and make the long trip back north.

Nthombi leopardess

En route we did see some nice zebra and giraffe, kudu, impala, leopard tortoise, hippo and a scrumptious breakfast waiting back at camp for us.

Zebra and Giraffe
The afternoon saw us not venturing too far, and we checked the north for leopards, but once again, to no avail.  The drive was again rather quiet, but we just enjoyed being out there and saw plenty of impala, a nice herd of elephants, and a spectacular sunset over Vyeboom Dam before enjoying a drink along the Nhlaralumi with the distant calls of hyenas keeping us company.

Sunset and Elephant herd at Vyeboom Dam
Sadly on the way home we didn’t get too lucky with the nocturnal creatures, and only ticked off an elephant bull, some fire flies and a bush baby.
Let us hope that the cats come out of hiding tomorrow!


  1. With magnificent sunsets like this all can surely not be lost. Love the zebra pics. Ntombi is gorgeous.

  2. Thanks for the update Chad. Lovely light in the impala shots. Love Ntombi, great shots of her, and some stunning sunsets...

    Hope you get some cats as well!!!

  3. Absolutely beautiful pictures, I recently went to a game reserve and it was amazing.