Still learning the roads 🙂 – Today I drove on the reserve from 9am to 5pm and I am quite tired now.
In the late afternoon I got surrounded by a herd of Buffalo. Have a look at the pictures to see how close they get. There attitude would change completely if one should get out of the car. They would go immediately into defense/attack mode.
Also I found a vista point from where one has a beautful view of Thanda and the hills beyond. I have included a picture looking at Thanda’s southern area.
Tomorrow I have to go to town (Richards Bay) to get some more things I need and to take care of some customs business (to get all my belongings into the country).
Enjoy the pictures!
Today I have celebrated my fiftieth birthday with a morning drive in the reserve (I am still learning the roads :-).
On the drive I ran into this Elephant bull at a small waterhole. He just had finished a “muddy”-bath and was resting from his labors. Looking at his size he could be my age, another gentleman in his best years!
On the same drive I took the picture of an African Hoopoe (picture below).
In the early afternoon I had an excellent massage at Thanda’s beautiful spa and then a relaxing break at one of the guest rooms (called villas, a much better name for those luxurious rooms), where I will also spend my birthday night. I am sitting in the lounge now writing this blog message. Dinner is soon to be served, and I am looking forward to it. The picture below shows the small pool and the the “day-bed in the trees” of my villa.
A quiet birthday in the African Bush with many good wishes from all over the world, a great way to turn fifty!
Thanks for all the birthday calls and messages!
Today’s blog message is about three different sightings.
First I got a very good image of a White-baked Vulture in flight.
Below are two pictures of the Thanda North Pride (Mum, her two daughters and her son) and the young male in a tree.
And last but not least a herd of Blue Wildebeest in the evening sun.
Enjoy today’s pictures!
Today started with a bit of bad luck. Just driving at Base Camp I heard a hissing sound and realized that my back left tire was loosing air (fast!). So I had to do my first tire change – no problem :-).
A short while after I left the camp I realized that my right back tire was also slowly loosing air. No more spare tire, so I had to live the situation and I have to get the tires fixed tomorrow at the reserve’s workshop.
With my tire situation as it was I could not drive around a lot, and risking getting stuck somewhere on the reserve, so I spent most of my remaining game drive time next to the largest waterhole.
And here I got lucky. First a Buffalo mum and her calf came to drink (Picture below). It is very unusual to see a cow separated from the herd. The little one was quite young.
And shortly after they left a large Elephant bull made his appearance (Picture above). He chased all the drinking Giraffes away from the waterhole and had a good drink himself before he walked quietly away across the savanna.
So, after initial troubles, not a bad morning!
At the end of a busy day at a “Mini Olympics Event” in one of the Zulu communities (I will post a few pictures of this event later) and an afternoon-“road-learning”-drive I got this shot of a male Cheetah in hunting mode in the evening sun.
Enjoy the picture!
When I was driving on the reserve today I saw my first lion since I started working at Thanda. The young lioness was sleeping on top of an old cattle loading station. I thought she was dreaming of cattle 🙂
I also got a beautiful shot of a Brown-hooded Kingfisher. (see below)
Enjoy the pictures!
Quite a few of you have asked me if all the pictures I am publishing on my blog are available for purchase. The answer is yes. I have created a new gallery on my website: Thanda 2012 – Direct link: http://www.sperka.biz/thanda
It may sometimes take a few day (after the blog has been published), before the images will appear on the gallery.
If you live in the USA or in Europe you can order prints and other products directly online. They will be produced locally and sent directly to you (So you do not have to pay shipping cost from South Africa :-))
Next to the new Thanda 2012 gallery there are thousands of other animal images available on my site – http://www.sperka.biz
Feel free to contact me if you cannot find your favorite image or a specific species and I will make it available to you.
PS: Today I was again in Richards Bay and I did not take any animal pictures, so I have uploaded a picture I took last year in July on Thanda (Two young male Lions). Enjoy the image!
Today to got my Land Rover Defender assigned to me, my real “open air office”. Thanda 3 is not a new Landi, but he has a lot of character 🙂
I took him for the first drive this afternoon (to start learning the roads) and I ran into a large group of Giraffe. Looking at the picture above it is no wonder that a group of Giraffe is called a Journey of Giraffe.
The two pictures below are of one of Giraffe in the evening sun and Thanda3 in front of Thanda House.
Enjoy the pictures!
When I returned this afternoon from Richards Bay, a city about 1.5 hours away from Thanda, a troop of Vervet Monkeys greeted me at Thanda House. One of them kept alarm-calling. He obviously did not trust me 🙂
A short while later a herd of Buffalo moved from East to West along the fence. When I got a bit closer to get some pictures they all focused on me for while and then lost interest and kept grasing and moving.
Tommorrow I will get my game viewing vehicle and I will start driving on the reserve learning the roads (and probably getting lost a few times in the process :-).
I took this picture of a Brown-hooded Kingfisher while I was sitting at the desk in my new “South African Bush Office”.
The room is quite spacious for all the computer and photography gear I brought with me and all my the stuff that will arrive by sea freight sometime in July.
Below are also pictures of the outside of Thanda House and of my office.