Mashatu Photo Safari Part 3

03rd July 2016
That Afternoon we set off on drive again and we decided we would try and find the Leopard from the morning drive, along the way we photographed a small Bachelor group of Kudu some of them had real impressive looking horns.

We arrived at the spot where the Leopard had last been seen and we started our search, it took us about 30 minutes but eventually we found her, she had moved into a thick patch of trees along a dry riverbed that made access by vehicle quite hard but we managed to get in and the Leopard at this point changed her position and she briefly walked through a patch of sunlight in between the trees before laying down in a even more in-accessible place so we decided to move on and see what else we could find.

We heard on the radio that the Cheetah Family had been found not too far away from where we were so we headed off to have a look, when we arrived the Cheetah were attempting to stalk a herd of Impala, the sub adults were too eager and the impala spotted them giving the alarm and raced away, the Cheetah then gathered together again and lay down in the clearing in a tight bunch as dusk approached, at this point we went and had our sundowner drinks and headed back to camp.

The following morning we headed back to where the Lioness was with the Elephant calf she was feeding on, when we arrived we found that the Lioness had been joined by a second Lioness as well as the Pride male.

The Lionesses were off to one side and the Male was keeping the Elephant carcass to himself, when the Lionesses approached him he charged at them and they scattered leaving the Male Lion to feed on the carcass.

After leaving the Lions we headed off to the riverbed to photograph a colony of White Fronted Bee-eaters that were nesting in the riverbank, the birds were busy with their morning preening and there was a lot of activity at the colony, birds flying in and out and even a bit of squabbling between some individuals, after about 20 minutes the birds all flew off to start their search for breakfast.

The other group of Photographers had found the Cheetah family again and we set off to see what they were up to, when we arrived the Cheetah were laying in a open area, it seemed as if they had managed to have a small meal and they were quite lethargic, a small herd of Zebra had spotted the cats and they were snorting their disapproval at them from a safe distance away, eventually as the sun got hotter the Cheetah moved into a shady patch and we decided it was time to head off to get our own breakfast.

That Afternoon we headed out again and photographed some Impala and a couple of Ostrich that were in the clearing. We then proceeded down to the river where we found a small herd of Elephant drinking at one of the remaining pools of water, one family of Elephants had a small calf with them and the calf found a crocodile sunning itself of the edge of the water and as with all Elephant calfs he decided to try and poke the Elephant with his foot, as soon as the Elephant came too close the Crocodile shot off towards the Water sending the Calf scrambling away in the other direction, it was quite comical to watch.

After leaving the Elephant we were driving along the riverbank of one of the rivers when we found a huge flock of Red billed Queleas coming in to roost for the night, what a impressive sight to see thousands of tiny birds forming theses huge flocks, we photographed the birds in the fading light with some interesting results !

After leaving the Queleas we headed back to camp a bit earlier than normal, we had a early departure the following morning as our guests had to travel far to get back home, it had been a great stay at Mashatu and we had all managed to get some wonderful memories and Images of Mashatu.


Photo comment By Sarah Hudson: I love your work. These are very good.
Photo comment By Annatjie Botha: Pragtige fotos Andrew! Dankie dat jy dit met ons deel.

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