SAVE charity event at Corinthian — 18 November 2017
In preparation for my participation Amit and Shalini Datta helped choose images for framing as well as the “stories”. I’ve added to their choices to colour it in somewhat and to give a little more perspective. First is an image of myself with the chosen framed photographs for auction on the evening.
The first Kruger National Park image is that of a waterbuck guiding it’s young one. This is the photograph I first thought of when thinking about which photo I have that I can associate with SAVE
1) Feature image: White-fronted bee-eater on branch (1st). White-fronted bee-eaters in Shingwedzi and Pafuri area with prolific birdlife. With careful attention it is sometimes possible to find a location where the birds are active and return to a certain spot. I was lucky on this occasion and managed to photograph the birds darting away and in the air to catch their favourite prey. Then sitting on a branch to enjoy their meal. (6 images)
2) Featured images (2 and 4): The view from the hide at Punda Maria Rest Camp is pretty spectacular at times with a great variety of wildlife visiting it. Campers on the fence have great views just relaxing by their caravans and tents. The elephant and it’s calf showed some affection towards each other. The images of the elephants and buffalo were taken between 6 and 7 am and there were quite a few folks in the hide and more so as the buffalo approached. The elephants must have known about the approaching buffalo (100+) because they actually made way for the buffalo before I was aware of them approaching. The larger elephants ushered and protected the smaller one as the buffalo encroached storming towards the water (5 images)
3) Featured image: Burchell’s Zebra. A small herd of Burchell’s Zebra and a lone bull African Buffalo were enjoying themselves at the Nshawudams or group of waterholes just south of Mopanie Rest Camp and near to Mooiplaas, a favourite location of mine, that makes for great viewing of especially large herds of Zebra.(2 images)
4) Featured image: Lioness with recent wound to shoulder (image 2). The lioness photographs were taken at Sable Dam (another favourite sighting location of mine) more than a year apart — the first two with the fresh shoulder wounds in May 2016 and unfortunately it is not known where and how the wound to the shoulder of the lioness had happened, but it seemed that it was a few days old. The further three images show likely the same lionesses — the shoulder wound on the one is visible as healed — and they have two litters of different aged cubs. The sharp teeth of the small cubs must have been irritating the one lioness as she was grimacing every time the cub tried to suckle. I particularly like the photo where they are watering as all seem to focus on the same area (5 images).
5) The owlet photographs were taken on an early morning walk with some rangers. The Pearl-spotted Owlet can be seen in the upper branches of the tree with birds around it making a huge racket by chirping and squawking and what not. This behaviour seems to be a methods of warning and trying to get the owlet to go away. The close-up of the owlet is interesting as the camera picked up the ruffling of the feathers whilst the eyes remained absolutely still and in focus staring at me (2 images).
6) Featured image: Leopard with Impala kill B&W (image 3). The photographs of the leopard with the impala which it had just caught were taken from the Olifants River bridge just after 5 pm. There was a group of visitors enjoying the setting sun across the river when suddenly a rush of activity caught my eye. I saw what it was and grabbed my kit and ran to a closer position. The first image was a minute or two after the leopard had actually caught the impala. It proceeded to drag the impala about 100 meters to a tree where it then rested and probably later that night pulled it up into the tree (the leopard as well as the carcass of impala are visible in the tree). The last two photographs were taken the following day (5 images).
7) The Timbavati road has been pretty fruitful for me over the years with this just about ‘accidental’ viewing of the lion and lioness in the grassland and the next leopard kill. I had a great distance to travel that day and had it not been that the lion with its beautiful mane lifted it’s head whilst I was quite focussed on the gravel road I’d have missed them. It’s really impressive how close the colour of the lion matched the surrounding grassland. The lion just lifted its head and dropped it down again (think this happened twice) — and that was it!! The King of the Jungle showing total dominance by having a nap in the middle of the open grassland (2 images).
8) The leopard with the impala carcass, both of which can be seen in between the branches and leaves of the tree were also on the Timbavati road although on an different location and one of the reasons I ended up purchasing an 800mm lens as the 400mm was just not doing the trick. On this occasion, also from seemingly nowhere, a brown-spotted hyena arrived and made a few circles around the tree and disappeared. The leopard positioned itself in a typical catlike relaxed way with legs hanging down either side of the branch. After a couple of hours I moved on (2 images).
9) The next few images where in the vicinity of Satara Rest Camp where savanas are prevalent. This particular image, which I’ve given a sepia tone reminds me of the olden days as in some aspects things never change (1 image)
10) The Black-winged Kite I’d for some reason never seen before but I spent quite a bit of time and many photos with the 800mm, but it was extremely difficult to get a really good image. It just kept it’s distance. Not a photograph I think I’d like to enlarge, but nevertheless attractive. I saw it hovering on many locations but not diving to catch anything (2 images)
11) Featured image: Sunset Nsemani Dam (1st). is very popular for it’s sunsets and as it is about a 10-15 minute drive from Satara Rest Camp many vehicles stay to quite late to witness the setting sun and then dash (50km/h on the tar roads) to the camp to be in by the time the gates close (fines are levies if late — sometime a lengthy “please explain” results). Of particular interest was the photograph with the sun’s reflection on the water and I included the other two so that folks could get a better understanding of the dam. The wide angle shot gives a nice perspective with a large herd of elephants watering. On the day with the sunset with the purple colouration there were a few hippo in the dam as well (3 images).
12) I included these images as I had recently had the opportunity of obtaining good photographs of them so therefore no specific features image. Kingfishers are one of my favourite birds and it is quite interesting that not all are predominantly fish eaters. They do feed on a variety of invertebrae and other insects as well as small reptiles. The Malachite Kingfishers (2 images) were photographed as were some of the Pied Kingfishers at Lake Panic close to Skukuza Rest Camp — this required a lot of patience!! The Pied Kingfishers were full of antics and I was not sure whether one tried to feed from the other. The Pied Kingfisher commencing it’s dive was photographed from a low bridge near Balule Satellite Camp near Olifants Rest Camp. The Brown-hooded Kingfisher photograph I took at Ratelpan — unfortunately it kept to the shade so I had limited opportunity to get a really good photograph (6 images).
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