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Thread started 23 Jul 2015 (Thursday) 15:10
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South Africa: 3 weeks and 3 days = 5 lodges and 5 reserves

 
buddy4344
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Aug 03, 2015 07:27 |  #121

The Simbavati game viewing is usually some of the best. On our next afternoon, we had good sightings as seen in the previous few images, but not what I'm accustomed to there until near total darkness, when we stumbled upon some wild dog. IN actuality, we were trying to get a better angle to photograph a tawny eagle when we literally stumbled upon these. Note: light was extremely low when I shot these images.


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buddy4344
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Aug 03, 2015 07:37 |  #122

As the dogs took off, we tried our best to follow. Wild dogs move, and I mean MOVE, so tracking them through the bush is near impossible. My guide did his best to stay parallel to the dogs and I shot away trying to get one or two keepers from the bunch. It wasn't easy shooting in the low light.

Once the dogs got away from us, we headed back toward the lodge when, in very deep darkness, we came across this rhino mom and baby. I think it was one of the biggest horns I've ever seen on a rhino. I just wish I could have shot this in better light.

So not that it's dark, the shooting is over. Or is it? Of course not. I have leopards in the darkness still to share for this day. :)


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Brian500au
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Aug 03, 2015 08:35 |  #123

These are some of the best shots of Africa I have seen. It is rare I will read nine pages of a thread but I could do another nine pages here no problems.

I not only appreciate the wonderful variety in the thread but the artistic skill you have shown with the camera is outstanding.

I really did not need much convincing to travel back to Africa but now I am totally sold.


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buddy4344
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Aug 03, 2015 19:58 |  #124

We were almost back at the lodge when we spotted this large male leopard that is only 4 years old. I actually photographed this leopard as a cub also. He emerged from the darkness and then became a perfect 'model' as he looked up to the side and also straight at us. An amazing sighting to end the evening.


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Aug 03, 2015 20:00 |  #125

Maybe some of the best night shots I have ever taken of a leopard , ending with a portrait shot from near point blank range.


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Aug 03, 2015 20:11 |  #126

I've added some video on YouTube of the lion kill of a Cape Buffalo calf shown ealier in this thread. The video can be found at https://www.youtube.co​m …kGo11YGs&featur​e=youtu.be (external link)


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Levina ­ de ­ Ruijter
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Aug 04, 2015 01:16 |  #127

Amazing...


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Aug 04, 2015 02:09 |  #128

I agree - Amazing, and beautiful.


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nazmo
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Aug 04, 2015 06:54 |  #129

Awesome thread, amazing work.
Im from Cape Town, South Africa. In typical local fashion, I never really went inland (which is a 2 hour flight max) to the popular game reserves.

3 years ago I went on two, unfortunately I was not into photography, so a complete missed opportunity.
After reading this, I really need to drag my butt out of the city and do some game drives with some decent kit.

Well Done!


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Aug 04, 2015 15:11 |  #130

Brian500au wrote in post #17654603 (external link)
These are some of the best shots of Africa I have seen. It is rare I will read nine pages of a thread but I could do another nine pages here no problems.

I not only appreciate the wonderful variety in the thread but the artistic skill you have shown with the camera is outstanding.

I really did not need much convincing to travel back to Africa but now I am totally sold.

These thoughts echo my feelings exactly !!! What an interesting, informative and educational thread. Visually OUTSTANDING. Luckily I travel to South Africa every second year to visit my aging mother. Always spend at least a week in the Kruger area. This thread has convinced me to broaden my horizons and visit other areas (KZN etc)


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buddy4344
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Aug 04, 2015 15:31 |  #131

As the days of this safari progressed, all of the participants realized we have been very fortunate to see so many unique sightings. With only 2 days remaining at Timbavati, many of us were wondering if more could possible happen. On this morning, we left camp and quickly found lion tracks leading to the water. We hurried to an overlook of the pond known as Argyle Dam and immediately spotted several lionesses and several cubs drinking water. The guide recognized these cats as being from the Timbavati Pride, which is a pride I have never seen. We took shots from the high ground and then circled around to get closer to the pride. One of the lionesses was very pregnant and all of the adults kept looking over their shoulder. In the photo below, you will note that of the two drinking lions, the nearest one is pregnant and has a huge belly. In the distance, we could hear the call of another lion.

On closer inspection, there were hints of blood near the faces of the cats so out guide concluded that these lions had been pushed off of a recent kill to our north by a large male lion. the lionesses feared for the cubs and were getting them away from that kill. Many of you may know, that a male lion that is not the father of cubs will kill those cubs. This causes the mother lioness to go into estrous and allowing the dominant male to mate with the lionesses. Bottom line: male lions only want THEIR BLOOD LINE to continue.


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Aug 04, 2015 15:32 |  #132

More of the lions:


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Aug 04, 2015 15:39 |  #133

The lions kept on the move and following in the thick brush was difficult so we decided to move onward and try to reconnect with the pride a few hours later. Soon we came upon a bull elephant that was digging for tubers to eat and also dusting himself. The dust has a two-fold benefit, keeping parasites away and also acting as a sun block. I like shooting 'dusting' into the sun or at an angle just off of the sun as this accentuates dust. This method also works for seed pods, fog, rain, etc.


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Aug 04, 2015 16:15 |  #134

Fantastic shots...That 100-400 II looks to be an excellent lens that is very sharp..


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buddy4344
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Aug 04, 2015 16:49 |  #135

don1163 wrote in post #17656518 (external link)
Fantastic shots...That 100-400 II looks to be an excellent lens that is very sharp..

I saw a few shots from a friends camera with this lens. It seemed to take his photography to a new level of sharpness. Based on that, I bought the lens just days before the trip. It is definitely a keeper. Very impressive lens. I also was amazed how close it will focus.


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South Africa: 3 weeks and 3 days = 5 lodges and 5 reserves
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