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One Word Photo Challenge – Hippopotamus

This week’s One Word Photo Challenge from Jennifer is Hippopotamus

079 Hippos at sunset dam

A Wallow of Hippo – Kruger National Park – Sunset Dam

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Loving the beach! Kruger National Park

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We need to talk! Kruger National Park – Sunset Dam

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Mother Love – Kruger National Park – Lake Panic

 

 

 

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Kruger National Park Day 18

16 July Lower Sabie
We decided on a later start today and started off at Sunset dam at quarter to 8. It is definitely best to be there in the morning. We had an amazing time watching white crowned lapwings, a ruff, three banded plover and different storks and kingfishers.

The hippos were also in amorous mood and we watched a love scene playing out.

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White-crowned Lapwing

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Ruff

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Yellow-billed Stork

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Wooly-necked Stork

Three Banded Plover

Three Banded Plover

Pied kingfishers

Pied kingfishers

What a lovely smile you have

Show me your tonsils and I’ll show you mine

Just a little kiss please

Just a little kiss please

What toothpaste do you use

What toothpaste do you use

Cosying up

Cosying up

Such a loving couple

Afterglow?

Travel by Hippo - beats the bus

Travel by Hippo – beats the bus

On the S28 we got another pearl spotted owlet. Great to see so many in the park. A Senegal lapwing was another bird that gave us pleasure to find.

Pearl Spotted Owlet

Pearl Spotted Owlet

Senegal Lapwing

Senegal Lapwing

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A tawny Eagle is disturbed by a warthog

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The hog ignores the bird

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Find a patch to scratch his nose and have a snack

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Tawny joins his mate in the dry grass and shares his meal with her.

Our morning produced all the usual suspects before we stopped at Crocodile Bridge for breakfast. This is a small Gate Camp and does not have a restaurant. However they have a coffee hut and tables and chairs outdoors. From the shop we got ready made sandwiches which were really good and we also indulged in chocolate chip muffins.  We spotted some good birds there too.

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White-bellied sunbird

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House Sparrow

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Blue Waxbill

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Black Headed Oriole

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Black Collared Barbet

A special experience today was on the S25 as it crossed to the S26 on a low level bridge. There was just a bit of water but lots going on. We watched monkeys drinking,a heron catch a fish and a monitor lizard catch a frog.

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The Heron ready to fish (Note monitor lizard in background.)

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What can he see?

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Going for the prey

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Got it!

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Down the gullet it goes

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Water Monitor starts exploring

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What can he find in the pond

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Getting closer

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Admires his reflection

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Tests the waters with a hind leg

Tongue darts in and out
Speaks with a forked tongue?

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A frog meets his fete

 

Monkey slake their thirst

Monkey slake their thirst

 

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Kruger National Park Day 16 and 17

Satara 14 July
I Had a very bad night last night because of my very sore back. I did some stretching exercises and then we hit the S100. Every bump in the road was an agony and my body language must have shown it all because Peter told Earl to stop and said he thought we should turn back so I could have a rest from sitting. Everyone agreed and I was grateful but said they should go out without me. I have seen everything in Kruger before and wanted them to go out and get me a photo of a leopard. They said they would but the didn’t! Instead we took a walk around the camp and saw some interesting birds. Then we went to the Mug ‘n Bean for breakfast. We spent the rest of the day in camp. Earl gave me a massage and I had a long sleep. I took some painkillers and this helped too.

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Bateleur spotted before we returned

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Grey-headed Sparrow in camp

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Heath did chef duty

Satara to Lower Sabie 15 July
I was much better this morning. I did my exercises and took some more dicloflam. We left at 6:30 and made our way to Lower Sabie where we would be staying in the Safari Tents right next to the Sabie River.
The first part of our trip produced lovely birds and game.

 

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Spider webs in the early morning mist

Lesser Striped Swallow

Lesser Striped Swallow

Good Morning

Good Morning

Lovely Day

Lovely Day

Here's looking at you kid

Here’s looking at you kid

A Tree with a View

A Tree with a View

Peek a Boo I see you

Peek a Boo I see you

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Breakfast French Style

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Bateleurs posing obligingly

Bateleurs posing obligingly

We stopped at Tshokwane for breakfast then did the Orpen Dam loop which was very fruitful.

Breakfast at Tshokwane

Breakfast at Tshokwane

Yellowbilled hornbill right next to me at Toshokwane

Yellow-billed hornbill right next to me at Toshokwane

A mousebird hiding in the foliage at Toshokwane

A mousebird hiding in the foliage at Toshokwane

There were lots of buffalo on the Orpen loop.

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Salon Treatments are so relaxing

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Just chewing on a blade of straw

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Spider Webs in the early morning

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Is that a grin or a grimace?

Crossing a ford we found these two kingfishers.

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Pied

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Malachite

We found this gang at a waterhole

We found this gang at a waterhole

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Yet another coucal

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Fish Eagle on nest

Male sandgrouse with chick

Male sandgrouse with chick

There was not much on the tar road to Sabie but we stopped at Sunset Dam and had a wonderful hour watching the activity there. A fish eagle caught a fish. A tawny tried to take it away from him. He survived that attack only to have it taken by an adult fish eagle. Giraffe came down as well as impala and wildebeest. There were scores of crocodiles and hippo on the bank and the water birds gave us some lovely entertainment.

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Our safari tents are not the same. Earl and I took the bigger one with a fantastic kitchen as we are the caterers. The front deck is also bigger and has a table for four but only 2 chairs. Luckily we brought camp chairs with us. Inside is very roomy and the bathroom is quite modern.
Heather and Peter have a smaller tent but the view is great. We think they might be gradually upgrading all the tents. Theirs is looking a bit the worse for wear. Hopefully in the next couple of years all the tents will be upgraded. I can highly recommend staying in the safari tents although during the day they are quite hot and at night they are cold. But extra blankets are provided. At suppertime it was pleasant on the deck. During the night the sound of the bush was deafening with hippo grunting, hyena laughing and jackals howling. Baboons barking added to the cacophony.

Here are some of the birds who came to visit.

Weaver

Spectacled Weaver

Canary

Yellow Canary

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LBJ – Could be a rattling cisticola

Glossy Starling

Glossy Starling

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LBJ