#NaBloPoMo 22 -Birthday Surprises

NaBloPoMo

How the weather can change so rapidly is a mystery to me.  It was pouring at bedtime last night and I thought it would go on for a week!  But this morning dawned bright and sunny with not a cloud to be see.  It was, however, still a tad chilly but it warmed up to short and t-shirt temperature by midday.

We did not dash out at dawn but were on safari before 7 am.

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Speckled mousebird catching the early morning rays

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This common waxbill teased me by flitting from tree to tree while I tried to snap his portrait.  After much begging he finally obliged.  Can you see that – oh all right then – expression on his face?

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This red-necked spurfowl is far friendlier and quite likes the attention of the  paparazzi

We had a pleasant drive and then returned to have breakfast at Cattle Baron at 10 before setting off again.

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Because it’s my birthday I was treated to breakfast in a restaurant!

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Warthogs have this cute habit of kneeling down to get closer to their food.

The elephants were having fun today.  At Hapoor we watched herd after herd come down to drink and play in the mud.  The babies always amuse me.

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Later in the day at another waterhole, we found a small family group having a muddy bath.  The two youngsters were rolling on top of each other and I could almost hear them singing – mud – glorious mud.  If eared that the smaller ellie wouldn’t be able to make it out of the mire but his elders used their trunks to help him out.   It was fascinating to watch.

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This is fun – really, truly it is!

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Do I have to get out?

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Okay, I’m coming

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Don’t forget my brother!

I took a video of the adults helping the baby out and will post it when I’ve worked out how.

We were looking at some creature when I suddenly became aware of a hoep hoep sound behind me.  I knew that sound and turned to look and sure enough there was an African Hoopoe right beside the road.  He was strutting about proudly showing off his catch – a lovely juicy worm

He kept strutting about and calling and I wondered if he was going to give it to his mate but she was nowhere to be seen.

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Look what I’ve got – Aren’t I clever!

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And don’t you love my gorgeous crest – I’m such a handsome boy!

Well no other hoopoe made an appearance and for several minutes he continued showing off his catch.  Then all of a sudden a Common Fiscal appeared from nowhere and snatched it from his beak.  Not so smart anymore Mr Hoopoe – that will teach you to be such a show-off!

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Another fine bird make my day – malachite sunbird

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And a glossy starling too

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Buffalo are the lions favourite food and these we saw near Zuurkop lookout.  We heard roaring but no sign of the predators looking for lunch.

Our drive produced many of our favourite creatures including zebra, red hartebeest, kudu,jackal and meerkat.   It was four o’clock and we were making our way back to camp on the hapoor loop when up ahead we saw four cars stopped on the road.  “What can you see?” asked Earl.  “Lion” I said, “in the shade on the side of the road.” “No way,” he said.  But soon we were able to get closer and there he was – a single male lion – definitely there to wish me Happy Birthday.   He was like a great big pussy cat washing his face and paws!

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We invited our German neighbours, Ruth and Klaus to join us for a braai this evening. What a lovely way to end our stay in Addo Elephant Park.

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And as I write this post I can hear the lions roaring not too far away!

 

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One thought on “#NaBloPoMo 22 -Birthday Surprises

  1. Oh dear all good things have to come to an end. The birds are beautiful and that little elephant would have stolen my heart as well. Lovely animals you saw wish we had the same experience. Travel home safe.

    Liked by 1 person

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