Growing fast!

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I remember Thanda’s North Pride Lion cubs when they were not even four month old; small little cats with tiny teeth, small claws and a very playful nature.

Well, the only thing that is left is the playful nature 🙂

With almost one year of age they have quite formidable teeth and claws and they can play already very rough. They are still youngster, fully depended on mum and the pride to provide food, but they will start learning the hunting trade soon.

This one was keeping an eye on the Thanda guests on my vehicle while the rest of the pride was sleeping after a night’s hunt.

Fourteen Bulls and a Webcam!

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This is a collage of the fourteen different Elephant Bulls I observed at the “Masahlela” waterhole at Tembe Elephant Park. Last Friday all of them came to drink at the waterhole between 10:00am and 2:00pm.

If you want to have a look yourself you can tune into their 24hr webcam at the waterhole – just remember that South Africa is 6 hours before New York Time (EST) and 2 hours before London Time (GMT):


Also, check out my Friday’s blog post for more images:

Flight or Fight?

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Whenever I look into a Buffalo bull’s eyes I see a pendulum swinging in its head:

Flight Fight Flight Flight Flight Fight Flight Fight Flight Fight Flight Fight Flight Fight ….

And if you are on foot it better stop on “Flight”. Buffalo’s are one of the few mammals that will attack without warning.  So it is important to respect these formidable creatures and keep the appropriated distance 🙂

I really like this Buffalo picture I took on Thursday at the Tembe Elephant Park.

Fill up, get cool and move on!

Imagine you are an Elephant Bull living at Tembe Elephant Park.

It is midday and you are due for a service 🙂  You move to the largest of the
waterholes …

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… and fill up with fresh water while some human tourist watch you 

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… you meet a few of your pals, some of them friendly and some of them are ready for a fight…

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… you finish your drink and do a little light sparring…

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… you move on to the “cool down” mud bath. Some big shots are in front of you so you have to wait your turn…

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… what a great feeling to cool down in the heat of the day …

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… you chase a Wildebeest around a bit – just for fun …

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… and have a little dust shower…

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… and now it is time you move back into the bush to continue your on-going
meal (about 350kg per day).

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Today I have observed this scenario 14 times at Tembe Elephant Park. All 14 bulls adhered to the same procedure – creatures of habit!

Have a good weekend!

Great Tuskers

In 2008 I was for the first time at Tembe National Elephant Park (This picture was taken then).

Tembe is know for some of the greatest tuskers in Africa (=Elephants with very long tusks). I will be spending the next two days at this reserve and I hope I get to see some of these “teeth giants” 🙂

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Symbols of Africa!

For me these are two true symbols for the African bush: Giraffe and Fever Tree!  The Thanda guests on my vehicle enjoyed this beautiful scene in the morning sun.

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The Fever Tree (Acacia xanthophloea) is a species of Acacia native to eastern and southern Africa. The trees grow to a height of 15–25 m. The characteristic bark is smooth, powdery and greenish-yellow in color  It is one of the few trees where photosynthesis takes place in the bark. Fever trees are fast-growing and short-lived.