Imagine! Four nights at Thanda Safari – Day 2

Getting up at 5:30 is a bit hard if one is not used to it. But if the weather is good, the luck on one’s side, going on an early game drive is very rewarding.

Day 2 of our safari experience could be called the Elephant Day! We had two excellent sightings with two different herds. But many other species were seen as well!

Feel free to ask any questions (as comments) or contact me at

Leaving the comfortable Tent at 5:30 is hard …
… but being rewarded with a White Rhino sighting after tracking them for a short while made it worth while.
A crash of Rhino in the morning light …
Encountering a female Cheetah hunting on the way to an Elephant sighting …
Smart phone distance!
A quick Kudu portrait photo shoot …
The first Elephant sighting of the day …
Giraffe and Oxpecker – a symbiotic relationship …
… same as for the Buffalo and Oxpecker.
There are no better Elephant sightings as when they are seen at a water hole.
A Scrub Hare sighting during the day is rather rare …
… and we ended the day as we followed two Lionesses on our way back to the Thanda Tented Camp
Picture of the day: Watching two small Elephants playing.

Major sightings:

⁃ Elephants

⁃ White Rhinos

⁃ Lionesses

⁃ Kudu

⁃ Cheetah female

⁃ Burchell’s Zebra

⁃ Red-billed Oxpecker

⁃ Scrub Hare

⁃ … and many more general game species and birds

This one of a series of posts to document all drives and excursions during a four day stay at Thanda Safari. I hosted two guests from Germany on a Private Photo Safari with me as the guide, Bheki as the tracker and the Green Mamba 1 as the Luxury Safari Vehicle.

See also the day 1 blog:

Imagine! Four nights Custom Luxury Safari at Thanda Safari – Day 1

This is the start of a series of posts to document all drives and excursions during a four day stay at Thanda Safari. I hosted two guests from Germany on a Private Photo Safari with me as the guide, Bheki as the tracker and the Green Mamba 1 as the Luxury Safari Vehicle. The next five posts are a visual record of the great sightings and interesting experiences the guests had during their stay.

Feel free to ask any questions (as comments) or contact me at

Enjoy the images!

Day 1 – Arrival and Frist Game Drive

The Green Mamba 1 – ready for work …
A young Kudu bull – the first sighting …
Lions on a Wildebeest kill – very exciting for a first safari …
Patience – A White-backed Vulture is waiting for the left overs …
As the sun sets an Elephant bull appears – magical …
Impressive – One of the two largest bulls on Thanda Safari …
Red Wine and G&T – The perfect drink stop just after sunset …
The Zulu Mamas were entertaining the guests at the Tented Camp – what a surprise …
Picture of the day – A Lioness just after she had her supper …

Major sightings:

⁃ Kudu

⁃ Lion (on a kill)

⁃ Elephant

⁃ Vultures

⁃ … and many more general game species and birds


Hard to belief but my GoPro survived a Lion attack!

Yesterday at Thanda Safari we released two male Lions onto the reserve.

As always I was ready to take picture of the whole procedure.

I had also mounted my GoPro with velcro on top of a plastic box to set it up opposite the boma gate where the Lions would step out into freedom.

This is the most amazing GoPro video and audio footage of one of the two Lions taking my GoPro into his mouth, chewing on it and then demolishing the attached plastic box.

The GoPro survived the ordeal, the plastic box was not so lucky.

And I got the most amazing footage from INSIDE A LIONS MOUTH!

I have added my video frame screen shots at the end of video clip as these amazing images ‘fly by’ rather fast in the video itself.

Please share the story if you find it as incredible as I do. Thanks

#lion #lionmouth #liongopro #gopro #goprolion #amazinggoprostories

📷 #christiansperkaphotography @christiansperkaphotography

#thandasafari @thandasafari


It has been a while since I reported on my blog and social media channels about the INKANYISO crèche in rural Zululand to which many of my friends around the word have contributed so generously (donation funds).

I visited the crèche today.

The teacher and the kids were not at the crèche as they are currently on school holidays.

As always, a few kids from the neighborhood swarmed in as soon as I flew my drone. They love the little flying machine. I have to take off and land at least five times before they are satisfied with the performance.

The fence is now finished and is looking very good. Thanks to Thanda Safari for all the fence materials. From my donation funds I was able to pay for the gates and for the required labour.

I also delivered and installed a new wall mounted white board, small white boards and pens for the children, some educational posters and new brooms to keep the place tidy (all of this was also paid using some of the donation funds).

We are currently getting quotes for roof gutters to capture rain water for the crèche. I will also get two chains and locks for the gates and I will order some colorful Inkanyiso Crèche signs. I have still some donation fund money left to help with these expenses.

And I have still a few more projects in mind to help the crèche 🙂

This is a list of some of the items:

– A Jungle Gym

– Daily meal (breakfast) allowances for the kids

– Small sound system (battery operated with solar charger) to play music

– Teacher’s table and shelves for the staff room

– Teaching materials (on-going)

– Rails to hang up paper/maps

– Floor files

I will visit again as soon as the school term has started and deliver some presents which I got from one of my recent guests at Thanda (for kids and the teacher).

Thanks to so many of you who contributed to the project and thank to Thanda Management and Sbu Mlambo (Thanda Community Liaison Officer) for all the support.

I will keep you updated about the progress!


Many of my friends around the world have already helped with donations of useful materials and with money donations to buy various things. Thanks a lot.

If any of you – wherever you live in the world – would also like to help with a donation then please contact me at or via WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger. I have bank accounts in Europe, USA and South Africa and I also have a PayPal account. So transferring any funds would be simple and would not cost a lot. Even the smallest contribution will be very much appreciated.

Be assured that 100% of whatever is donated will be used to pay for crèche projects.

Imagine …

Imagine …

… you left your office for a short drive in nature

Imagine …

… you spend a warm summer evening on an open savanna

Imagine …

… a lite drizzle of rain and strong winds cool you down

and imagine …

… you watch a beautiful male Lion drinking, observing his surroundings and sleeping

Well, if you can imagine that then you shared one of my evenings this week 😊

Have a good weekend!

#Thandasafari @thandasafari #christiansperkaphotography @christiansperkaphotography

Bad Monkey – Good Monkey!

A bad monkey rampages houses, takes goods from tables, threatens women and children to give up their meals and is not afraid of humans.

A good monkey forages in the wild, avoids human habitation, is quite afraid of people and can only be observed from a distance.

And who turns a good monkey into a bad monkey: Humans … by leaving food in the open, by feeding the cute creatures and teaching them the wrong behavior.

Only a monkey that has the natural fear of humans will remain to be a safe monkey. Once a monkey has lost that fear he is no longer safe.

Please keep them safe!

PS: A troop of Vervet Monkeys is stopping most afternoons at the Thanda House gardens to feed of and around the trees. They get nowhere near the house. If they see me and if they think I saw them then they immediately disappear into the crowns of the trees. If I am around and one gets to close to the house I give a quick shout and all of them take flight. At Thanda House we keep all food in fridges or in sealed containers and keep all doors and windows closed if we are not around. Safe for us and safe for the monkeys.

This picture was taken with a 500mm lens. The little guy has not detected me yet. As soon as he heard the click of the camera and saw me he bolted.

#Christiansperkaphotography @christiansperkaphotography

#Thandasafari @thandasafari

The year in twelve pictures!

It seems that the years go faster the older I get. But my mother tells me that is the ‘modern’ world around me going faster and faster. Be that as it may, this busy year went by very quickly.

Here are 12 pictures. One for each month as a reminder of an interesting and eventful time.

I wish all of you a Happy New Year 2019!

In January I took this picture of a Secretary bird during a visit to Ithala Game Reserve. One of my favourite national parks in KwaZulu Natal.

On 19 February we had over 100 mm of rain and the Thanda House waterhole was full to the rim. In my over six years at Thanda I had never seen so much water!

I call March the month of the Lions. All North pride females presented their litters to the world and all the sudden we had 10 new Lion cubs!

One of my favourite subjects to photograph are White Rhinos on the Thanda Safari savanna. I really like this shot taken in April. The savanna was still quite green at the time.

It is always very existing when a herd of Elephants appears around a corner and one has to practice driving backwards to get out of their way. On this day in May the herd was in a hurry to get to a waterhole. And so was I!

Chewing the cud. This Giraffe was supplementing its body with calcium and phosphorous from an old bone by chewing on it. This picture was taken in June, one of the winter month when this behaviour can often be observed.

I love the iSimangaliso Wetland Park and Lake St.Lucia. A boat cruise on a day in July presented many opportunities to take pictures of sparring Hippos.

Thanks again to many of you around the world who help me supporting Inkanyiso Creche in one of our local communities. In August I delivered a first batch of goodies (tables, games, pictures, …). More will follow in the new year!

A visit to Tembe Elephant Park is always worthwhile. In September I had the opportunity to visit again and I got some great Elephant and Buffalo images.

October: A bit of hanky-panky in spring. The most natural thing in the world. Making new Zebras! Note the Buffalo in the background watching with interest.

Baby animals are always cute, but little Hyena puppies win this year’s price for cuteness. Since November we had many sightings of them around their den.

Summer rains have started properly and the savanna is turning green again. Our new Cheetah males love the open areas which they share with many species. In this December image Zebras, Impalas and Rhinos are posing in the background for this Cheetah portrait.

And in case you would like to view more of my 2018 pictures just have a look at my images on Instagram –

I will now take a few days off relaxing at Pakamisa Private Game Reserve.

I will be back in 2019 with more pictures from Thanda Safari and many other places in the South African Wild. |

Eight weeks …

This is a selection of pictures documenting my work for the last eight weeks. I has been busy and interesting. I hope you will enjoy this picture collection 🙂

Bheki and I taking a selfie with Elephants …
Afternoon drinks at the waterhole …
Thanda House dam with morning mist …
Vulture take-off …
Thanda Safari’s newest Cheetah lady in front of my home (Thanda House) …
A very pleasant surprise – one of my picture on the title page of the Leading Hotels of the World 2019 Hotel Directory …
A rare sighting – this Lioness killed a Wildebeest right in front of my vehicle …
I love Hyenas – I think they are beautiful …
A second new Cheetah arrived at Thanda Safari and got a full physical exam …
Not really! The small Lion cubs had to give up their ‘hunt’ – the White Rhinos were a bit big for them – The Lion mothers watched the scene bemused from a distant …
The largest antelope on Thanda Safari – Kudus …
What a sighting – this female Leopard posted for a close-up …
Showing our guests a scorpion – Bheki finds them – I ‘host’ them for the show and tell 🙂 …
Having a nap on the dinner while the family is having dinner …
Strong colors – Violet-backed Starling bathing ….
Giraffes after Sunset …
Just too cute – a tiny baby Hyena …
Inspection – A female Village Weaver (left) inspecting the nest of a potential mate …
A bit of drone work – birds eye pictures of Thanda Safari properties from the air …
Funny chicks – Small Ostriches at Pakamisa Private Game Reserve …
Almost a dance – a Zebra fight …
My favorite picture of the last few weeks – A Black -Rhino hosting an Oxpecker …

#christiansperkaphotography @christiansperkaphotography

Last Chance – Win a copy of the new Thanda Cats Book!

A few weeks ago I have finally started working on the revision of my Thanda Cats book, which is planned to be published soon.

After reviewing almost 5,000 Lion, Leopard and Cheetah images I have come up with a selection of 170 pictures which are candidates to be included in the new book. But only between 20 and 40 images will be added to the existing 90 book pages to create the new edition.

This means I could use some selection help. I would appreciate if as many of you as possible could look over the gallery with the new images and pick your favorites (not more than 20). And it would be good if you could include all three species in your choices – Lions, Leopards and Cheetahs.

Gallery Link:

I am also looking for some great new quotes related to animals, nature, conservation or the world in general. As with the first edition each book page will include a good quote. So please forward me any quote(s) you might like.

Send your image selection and/or quotes via email to From all the ‘help emails’ I receive I will draw one ‘winner’ who will get a complimentary copy of the new book once it is published.

Thanks a lot for your help and good luck!

PS: This is a link to the PDF of the original edition in case you would like to have look: |