|Pic of the Day.|
( Herald & Grant.)
Elephant ( Kambaku) / Peru – Elephant Crossing.
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Peru – Illegal Crossing.
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Peru – Wilkens Way South.
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Argyle – Vyeboom Dam Loop.
Buffalo ( Dagha Boy) / Vielmieter – Mangawaan Rd.
Buffalo ( Dagha Boy) / Mbali – Mvubu Crossing.
( Herald & Grant.)
Elephant ( Kambaku's) / Peru – Mphiva Plains.
Elephant ( Kambaku) / Peru – Appleleaf Rd.
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Peru – Woza Woza Cutline.
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Argyle – Argyle Rd.
Having had a good couple days and an unbelievable afternoon we were due a quit drive, well I guess it's all relative. There were two Leopards found, both young males, one on Motswari and the other being Ntombi's youngster who was still to be found with the remains of their Impala kill from two days ago. Having seen Kuhanya last night, Herald and I passed on visiting them and went in search of Elephant and Buffalo, with the hope of also maybe finding a Rhino, but that would be an added bonus!
Our morning got off to a very quiet start and after following up on Argyle Males tracks unsuccessfully we decided to head South and follow up on Buffalo tracks that had been found. Where the South had been very busy the last few days, we struggled to find even an Impala on our trip. We did find the tracks for a herd of Buffalo but they had moved off further South early in the evening and all we found was an old Dagha Boy that was following behind obviously trying to catch up with the herd when they took their mid morning rest. Not having much luck we turned back to the North hoping to find Elephant along the Tsharalumi.
Herald had checked the North and West for Rhino or Buffalo and had as much success as we had, he did however find a number of Elephant Herds in the direction we were heading. Having spent time with one of the herds in a riverbed we seemed to run into Elephant around every corner after that. We not complaining though, as our Elephants are extremely relaxed and it's a great experience to sit in amongst them and become part of the herd as they feed about the vehicle, some approaching inquisitively within touching distance. Jacky and I could spend our entire drive with a herd, and with not much else around this morning we spent considerable time driving from herd to herd observing their antics.
Our afternoon was to be spent looking for any sign of Lion, as both Heralds and my guests were running out of time, having only two drives left. Having found no sign in the morning, we had to take a chance and head to areas that we seldom travel, but desperate times call for desperate measures.
Travelling around we found far more general game than we had in the morning and had a very nice sighting of a Herd of Zebra that appear to have settled in the clearing around Argyle Dam.
Having seen some game we set off to the remoter corners but before getting there we received a message from Johannes that he had a herd of Elephant around a hundred strong converging below Mbali Dam in the Tsharalumi Riverbed. Being in a very picturesque area and the sheer numbers, ok, also that they both Jacky and my favourite animals, we could not pass up the opportunity to see this spectacular. Turning around from no man's land we headed in their direction and as we approached we started coming across a number of individual herds moving to the East away from the river. Arriving on a ridge parallel to the river we noticed that the gargantuan herd had splintered and kinship herds were heading in all directions, obviously finished with their get together. We chose a fairly large herd hoping to find a baby Elephant, which we had not seen yet. We got lucky this time as our herd contained a number of youngster of which two were mere months old. Things only got better as the herd was extremely relaxed and allowed us to approach extremely close and paid us little attention as they went about feeding.
We concentrated on the babies as they tried to gain control of their trunks and imitate the adults in their feeding, becoming frustrated when it would not do what they wanted, they then would swing them around and whip them first against the bushes and then their bodies. They then would give up using their trunks and try put things directly in their mouths. After expending considerable energy they gave up and would follow the adults, and at every pause to feed they would lie down and take a nap instead. We had an awesome time following them and marvelling at the interaction of the herd, so much so, we spent until sunset with them. When finally a rutting male Impala's snorting spooked the herd and they turned one eighty degrees and disappeared off into the distance.
Not forgetting our mission we took a chance driving back on the tar road, hoping to find the Lions we have heard calling the past couple of nights to the North of Motswari. Unfortunately it looked like our luck had run out and we had ourselves a very quiet drive home. Guess tomorrow morning is D-Day.