It does not happen often that we see Spotted Hyena at daylight. So my guests were very happy to see this Hyena just after sunrise on the Thanda savanna.
PS: I will not be posting anything until early next week. I am spending this weekend at Amakhosi Safari Lodge on the Mkuze River near Pongola 🙂
As a photographer I am usually not too keen on early evening “night” drives. Usually there is little to be seen, but the occasional eyes of a Bush baby.
But on this particular evening we saw a Spotted Eagle Owl on the way home to the lodge (this picture was taken with the help of Bheki’s spotlight).
This young Elephant bull was testing the strength of my Land Rover and of Bheki’s tracker seat. After a slight shake to the car he decided that this was a “strong thing” and he moved off quietly and continued feeding.
… and this is one of the reasons why our trackers do not stay in their seat when we are viewing Elephants 🙂
When his little sister (she is only a few weeks old) was crossing the road she was giving us a good “Elephant head shake of displeasure” before quickly joining her mother on the other side of the road.
The Elephant moms just watched the displays tolerantly without any signs of agitation.
The Thanda guests enjoyed the “Shaken by Elephant” experiences.
Today we had an excellent Leopard sighting on Thanda. This beautiful large male was first hiding in thick bush but then decided to rest in the open. He had a few wounds which suggests that he has been in a fight recently.
On the same game drive we saw Elephants and Lions. A very productive afternoon 🙂
From this angle the difference between a mature (40-45 year old) Elephant bull and a young bull in his teens becomes clear. Two of Thanda’s magnificent Elephants presented themselves during one of today’s game drive.
This young male Lion was completely “stuffed”. He had feasted on a Wildebeest and had a hard time moving. But he kept an eye on us while we were watching him in his agony.
And this young Lioness was stalking and “mock attacking” our vehicle. This was very exciting for the guest on my game viewer and I got a good picture 🙂
The Thanda North Pride was not willing to move far of their Wildebeest kill when three White Rhinos moved through the area. The Rhinos investigated the kill while the Lions were watching closely. At one stage the Rhinos got too close for comfort and the Lions retreated (but not far :-)). One Lioness even “stalked” and “drove” the Rhinos to get them away from the kill. As soon as the large herbivores were gone the carnivores continued their meal.
I needed the wide-angle lens for most of the images, as it all happened very close to our game drive vehicle.
On the same game drive we saw a Black Rhino with their calf, newborn Helmeted Guinea fowl chicks and a Spotted Eagle Owl. What a day!