Friday, March 22, 2019

Nothing is ever Black and White...Wildlife on drives at Kwafubesi Tented Safari Camp & Safari Plains.

Is there ever a situation where it is only Black & White?
Do the shades of grey in between define these two "colours"?
With that in mind and harking back to a gentler time
when film images were often in B&W,
and the smell of chemicals filled my darkroom,
I dedicate this posting...

A couple of Rhino facts...
Both Black & White Rhinos are actually grey.
The most identifiable differences are in their bulk
 and the shape of their mouths.
However, both species do enjoy a good mud wallow.

Not quite Black & White...
The giraffe has a 45cm tongue and the same number
 of neck vertebra (7) as a human.
Its heart has a non return valve so that when it bends down
to drink, blood does not rush to the head.
And the reverse is true as it can come to the upright position in seconds.
Although it has been thought that this animal is mute,
it does have a range of sounds, like a snort and a bellow.
However, some of those are beyond the range of human hearing. 

Black & White in Black and White.
The stripes on the Zebra have several uses:
1]They are utilized to imprint youngsters on their mothers
2] Help with heat dissipation.
3] The camouflage they provide can confuse predators,
especially when they are in large herds. 
The leg length of a baby Zebra is the same as that of the adults.
This is done in order to protect the newborns from becoming prey.
When looking at a "dazzle" (collective noun for zebra herd)
the potential predator will see only one size of animal.

Not much white...but a beautiful black mane.
One of the dominant males in this private game reserve.
It does not matter that the eyes are not in colour,
they seem to stare through my lens and straight
into the soul of the reader.
The roar of a mature lion can be heard up to 8km away

The Nile Crocodile.
Its colouration provides ample cover as it 
glides about in the dams on this property.
They are the winners when it comes to bite pressure.
Producing a downward force of around 5000psi!
By comparison a lion bites with a force of  650psi.
And for those who are inquisitive,
a human has bite force of 171psi.

Large and grey...the African Elephant.
Often referred to as a grey ghost due to their ability
to vanish/appear in almost total silence.
This is due in part to the fact that their feet have fat pads 
and that structurally they are walking on tip toe.

The only part of an Impala ram that is black are his horns.
This one is getting some early morning sunlight.
As a major prey species, I am always glad when I spot one of these
during a morning game drive.
It means that he has made it through the night.
This could, in part, be ascribed to the fact they can run at up to 80kmph.

BIG and Black!
The mighty African Buffalo.
One of the most dangerous animals to encounter while on a bush walk.
Buffalo can be unpredictable and will often charge for no reason.
They have been know to kill lions that have attacked them.
Weighing in at up to 900kg and moving at a speed of 57 kmph.
they are not to be taken lightly.

Even if it is the wild life that this posting was about,
I never forget the sunset at the end of a game drive.
It is moments like this that makes me grateful to be living in Africa.

Once you report to the main reception at Mabula,
a field guide will come to collect you to transfer you to the camp.
It is situated about 15-20 minutes away,
and as the road goes through the game reserve
who might be in for some surprise game viewing.
And by the way, Google maps still has not rectified their directions.
If you are going to follow them , then use "Bela Bela" as you destination.
Once there you can enter "Mabula" to get you to the correct car park.

This lodge is situated before you get to the turnoff to the main Mabula Game reserve.
Keep an eye open for this wall on the left hand side of the road.
And by the way, Google maps still has not rectified their directions.
If you are going to follow Google maps, then use Bela Bela as you destination.
Once there you can enter Safari Plains to get you to the gate.

A big thank you to each of these brands
 for coming on board.

This Samsonite suitcase has been my 
constant travel companion for the past several years.
It might look worn,
but that represents the kilometers/miles
we have shared together.
From Kilimanjaro to the beaches of India.
To coach trips across Europe and Vietnam
and to a variety of game lodges and road trip destinations
 in South and Southern Africa.
Check out their Facebook page:

This torch has been turning heads!
The Olight SRS2UT Intimidator.
Marketed locally by:

My camera brand of choice for more than 4 decades!

When it is time to print out my special images,
this is the company that I rely on to do that.

Bush gear to make me blend in...
in comfort and style.

I have worn the orange Veldskoen in the jungles of India
and on the beaches of Croatia.
Not to mention, many game reserves in Africa.
They are probably the most comfortable pair of shoes
that I have ever owned.
Now to try out the rest of the colours in the range.

When I get home. I rely on this ISP
to provide me with high speed fibre connectivity 
to enable me to get my postings published in record time.

This Powerbank is my constant companion
 while I am travelling.
It can do up to 4 full re-charges of my phone before
needing to be charged.
Supplied by...

When offered an option...
ALWAYS be Batman.
My constant travelling companion.
To find out more about the collectible Funko range of figurines,

I could not do without this awesome laptop bag from Solo.
Padded for protection and with enough pockets to keep
almost everything INCLUDING the kitchen sink in,
this is definitely an stylish addition to any business presentation.
Be it in the boardroom or the bush.
This bag can also be worn as a backpack. 
There are straps in a hidden compartment that can be deployed
when you need both hands for other purposes.
To find out more about the stylish Solo range,

This locally made product was indispensable when using a long lens.
The ball and socket might look simple...and it is, 
which is why it should be in the gear bag of every serious photographer.
This locally made, deceptively simple device is ideal 
for tracking birds in flight or animals in motion.
The base can be used on a beanbag or a tripod,
with the ball being fitted to the camera.
The simplicity of the device allows to to move from supported
to hand held in a fluid motion.
There is also a version that can be used on a car window.
To see more about the product, 
visit their Facebook page:
Or order directly from:

To see who else were winners in 2018, visit:

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and may not be used without permission

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