Saturday, December 30, 2017

Game drives fromTented Adventures, Pretoriouskop. Kruger National Park, Mpumalanga



I do enjoy the early misty morning game drives.
The road ahead vanished into a gentle drizzle,
 that was not enough to spoil the drive.

Enock, a tracker turned guide, took most of the game drives that I went on.
Guests might also have the opportunity to drive with either Michael or Jason,
depending who is on duty in camp. 

This young Hyena had decided that the best way to deal with the inclement weather 
was to curl up and sleep though it.

A young bull elephant decided that we were worth sniffing the air for.
However, he quickly realized that we were not worth the effort and went back to foraging.

As they get older, hyena lose their "cuteness" but gain an inquisitive streak
that can cause problems in their interactions with humans.

You might not find this mollusc on a game drive check list.
A live Giant Land Snail is an unusual sighting. 

This is the Red-crested Korhaan,
Also known as the "Suicide Bird" because of the mating display of the male.
It will fly high into the sky and then plunge back to earth,
only stopping just before crashing into the ground.

Despite the large number of rhino that are poached on a regular basis,
there are still family groups like this that can be seen.

In 1931 Noel Coward wrote these famous words:
"mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun".
This hippo had forgotten that.
It must have realized that he is neither a mad dog nor an Englishman
 and decided to head back into the water.
Hippo normally only come out to graze after dusk

A Flap-necked Chameleon makes its way across the road.
A very unusual sighting as these are normally found in trees and vegetation.
Perhaps I should have asked our ranger the eternal question...
"Why did the Chameleon cross the road"?

If you are lucky enough to be in the park during Impala lambing season.
then you will find the veld alive with hundreds of new born babies.

This female leopard was keeping her cub safe from prying lenses.
She was a long way from the road and well protected by the rocks
 that surrounded the outcrop she was lying on 

This Kudu bull was using a termite mound as a vantage point.

This glare is not threatening when you are in a vehicle.
But bump into this fellow when you are on foot and
 it becomes a situation fraught with potential danger.

This female baboon was taking good care of her recently born
by keeping clear of the troop alpha male.

Birding in Kruger is very rewarding.
There are several raptor species.
This Steppe Buzzard being one of them.

Doing a happy dance!
This elephant had the largest set of tusks I have ever seen in the wild.
This display was non-threatening and
 as soon as he was over trying to look intimidating, he walked past us
 and continue to focus on food.


This is the flower of the Sicklebush ( Dichrostachys cinera)
The rangers have a different Latin name for it.
Landrovis papwielis...literally a Land Rover with a flat tyre!
Although it is both an invader and pioneer species,
it does have many good properties...aside from causing punctures.
As the latter is will bind soil in areas that might have been laid waste
 by erosion or over grazing.
As the former, it is almost impossible to get rid of once it has taken root.
That being said, the wood is hardy and therefore good for slow burning firewood.
It also has many medicinal properties.


An African sunrise or sunset is a wonderful way to either start or end your day.

In order to get  home from Tented Adventures, I used this shuttle company.
Hector Ndlovu was the driver and he greeted me with such a huge smile
that I thought that we knew each other.
This is my fourth trip with this company and every driver
 has been a pleasure to interact with
More importantly, as all the passenger were on board early, 
we were able to leave ahead of schedule.
I can highly recommend this service.
To find out more about the routes they offer,
visit their website: 



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