A mesmerising week in pictures

By Luke Street

I have just returned from an incredible trip to East Africa, but it is wonderful to be back in the Great Kruger Park. There is something so special about the Timbavati. Although I have not been on many game drives since I got back, it is unbelievable to see how abundant the animals and birdlife are.

Red-billed Queleas, one of my favourite things to photograph, have been around in massive numbers. I find it mesmerising to just sit and watch as these flock of hundreds, if not thousands, of tiny birds flutter around. They are particularly special when they come to drink. The flock will fly around the watering hole time and time again, waiting for one or two brave birds to plunge into the water and drink.

This entertaining action is then normally followed by the rest of the enormous flock all coming down and trying to land at once. It never lasts very long though. As soon as one of the birds decides to quickly fly away,  they all follow. I wish I could describe the sound of hundreds of birds all landing and taking off at the same time. It is truly surreal and something worth going on safari for just to experience once.

Another special sighting for the Tanda Tula guests this week was that of the White Headed Vulture. This species is not seen very often, with an estimation of only two birds habituating every 50-60 km squared. What was even more exciting was having its cousin, the White Backed Vulture, at such close proximity for a comparison.

The younger lion of the Mbiri collation was also lurking around, although we never caught sight of his male counterpart or the two Roth females that we believed were in close proximity. It has been really awesome to watch this youngster growing in strength and confidence and watch his mane slowly develop.


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