Monday, December 19, 2016

Safari Live with Wild Earth TV...Sabi Sand

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Unlike the majority of game lodges that I visit,
this was to be a totally new experience for me.
I was woken at 04h00 so that I could join the Safari Live crew
on their early morning game drive 
that was leaving at 04h30...
The moon was still bright in the sky as we left camp

A "selfie".of sorts...
I was tucked in between the ranger and the cameraman.
The vehicles are not designed to include visitors, 
but being involved in the TV industry, I understood that I had to keep
 my head down and stay out of shot.

There is nothing quite like an African sunrise...

Let the broadcast begin.
Brent Leo-Smith starts the morning off,
by welcoming a world-wide audience to a live drive.
Via their dedicated channel, the world gets to see what were seeing in real time.
Such is the power of modern technology,
that viewers can ask questions, 
and get them answered immediately.
This interaction also works in reverse.
  Brent forgot the meaning of the name of one of the Leopards, 
and the answer was instantaneously forthcoming from the on-line community!

Up to this point, the most interesting "photo opportunity"
had been the cloud formations.
But all that was to change in a heartbeat.

A pair of Cheetah brothers had been spotted close by

Unlike the leopards in the reserve,who have been given names,
these boys are nameless...
Why? Because there are only two of them

Suffice to say that only the one brother was prepared
to "pose"...the other one decided that being behind a bush, 
out of sight, was the better option.

Adult Zebra are not usually on a Cheetah menu,
so these were safe and as there were no youngsters in the herd,
both 'boys' walked past.
There was a lot of dust and noise, 
but not much predator/prey interaction

The tree of life?
Not too certain about that fact, 
but this specimen did catch my attention

Not a species that I see too often...and my only "spot" on the drive.
This Side-striped Jackal was seeking respite from the heat
in the shade of a bush.

There is nothing as heart stopping as the first sighting
 of a Leopard during a game drive.
Even if it is camouflaged by branches

But patience and persistence paid off,
and eventually Inkanyeni (meaning Light) 
decided that it was "safe" to come out

This is her son, Vutomi ( meaning Life)
He was part of a pair of siblings,
but as his sister has not been seen for a while,
there is speculation that she might have died.

Give a boy a stick...
and he will be entertained for hours.
In this case it was a large piece of bark,
and it only held his attention for a short while.

Both Inkanyeni  and Vutomi had recently eaten
(we saw the remainder of an Impala in a tree close by)
so heavy panting (to cool down) and relaxation was on the cards

In the meantime, mom had relocated
 to some shade not too far away

And then to a branch in a tree...

And finally to the shade behind a log.
Broadcast over, it was time for us to head back to camp

While we were out looking for game,
the team back in the Final Control studio
 were making certain
the images and audio were being broadcast
 to their world wide audience

Drive and breakfast over...
it was time to head back to my room for a nap.
But first I had to publish this posting.
Job done, nap time beckons 

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