Thursday, 23 October 2014

A Trip to South Africa - Part 2 Amakhala Day 1

So he we are at Amakhala after a superb meal last night, we were woken at 6am, just time for a quick freshen up, get dressed, cup of tea and in the Land Rover for 6:30, bit like being on the Apprentice!

Unfortunately the weather wasn't great this morning very overcast and some heavy rain about. You would think not ideal for seeing wildlife, but you never know.........

We set off from the lodges and out across the plain. There were lots of Antelope, Zebra and Wildebeest about to start off our day:
 Zebra, Impala & Wildebeest:
These were followed by our first bird out in the wilds, don't get too excited.....
African Stonechat:
Not to dissimilar from the UK version, but a nice start to the birds, none the less. We then came across our first Black-backed Jackal, more of these later.
After this we managed to get closer to a 'herd' of Zebra:

Followed by our first Kudu, who seemed very interested in us:
And now our next bird who posed nicely for us,
Southern Boubou:
Our next antelope looking quite magnificent,
Male Impala:
Then a young Yellow-fronted Canary:
But nothing could prepare us for what came next, in the pouring rain we watched this Cheetah with a fresh kill (Wildebeest), amazing.....

You can see the Cheetah looking around as this Jackal turned up and started calling for his mates!

So after all the excitement we left the Cheetah to it's lunch and headed away to find this chappie nearby,
Cape Rock-thrush:
See time for a coffee break and a snack to keep us going, before heading further afield. The rain had now stopped but it was still quite dull, making photography difficult, but you can't have everything!

We came across our first Elephant at this point although he was a bit camera shy:

We had seen a few Cape Glossy Starlings during the morning but this is the first I managed to get a closer shot of:
followed by this Cape Weaver:
We now saw our first Vervet Monkeys:

We then came across a rarity that got our Ranger and Guide Jason quite excited,
Burchell's Coucal:
Locally known as the rain bird, as we were told that you only usually see it when it rains! So we were lucky with the weather (I think!!)
After this we headed back to the lodges for breakfast, we were just amazed by what we had seen in the first 3 hours! So breakfast done we had down time until 2 when lunch was served, then off again at 3:30 for our second game drive.

As this post is already quite long, I will leave it here and pick up again later.

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