LIVE UPDATE from our #BigCatPhotoSafari to Sabi Sand, South Africa.
By Specialist Photographic Guides Villiers Steyn & Lance van de Vyver.
At 1pm yesterday, one of our guests came to call us at the lodge. He had been sitting on his deck when a herd of buffalo came past his room. Next moment lions attacked and tried to take one out. The buffalo chased the lions off. How exciting! So on drive in the afternoon, we headed out with a plan to see the lions. We headed around the corner to where they were seen and, instead, bumped into Hosana at the small pan in front of Galago camp. He was lying close to the water.
Hosana got up and began eating grass. He ate a lot of grass before settling down for a bit. Something must have upset his stomach and he ate grass possibly to help make him vomit up a fur ball or settle his stomach. We went and waited at the water for him to come for a drink. 1.5 hours later and Hosana walked past the water and straight into a deep gully in front of camp where he had a bush buck kill. So unlucky that our patience did not pay off! We then headed to where the lions had been found and saw them as they woke up and aloe groomed each other. They then headed for a drink, not to the Galago pan, but to the Vuyatela pan. We swung around and waited for them at the waterhole. They lined up in two groups and drank. We managed to get some super shots of them. Unfortunately, the wind was howling so we did not get their perfect reflections, but the images everyone got were fantastic in any event.
We then stuck with the lions a short while as the walked right past our vehicles (an amazing experience). Our game drive took place all within a 200 meter radius of camp – unbelievable!.
This morning we woke up to chilly, moody weather and headed out. We immediately searched for the lions we had seen last night, but tracked them out of our traversing area south. We then headed east to look for the wild dogs from yesterday. On route, we bumped into sparring waterbuck and a stunning herd of elephants which we spent some time with as they came very close to us. The overcast conditions were perfect for photographing the texture in the elephants’ skin.
We stopped at Cruise Camp waterhole were we photographed some very active fish eagles. We drove onwards, and on the Kruger boundary we found a very fat and large female hyena feasting on a fresh impala carcass. She was covered in blood and provided some great photo opportunities as she dragged the carcass around. She was very nervously looking into the Kruger. Eventually she raced back into Kruger, with carcass in mouth. Nearby we found cheetah tracks and assume she stole a cheetah kill.
We then had a coffee stop at big dam before it began to rain and we decided to head back to the lodge for a Lightroom session and some hot coffee and breakfast. A warm fire awaited us as we arrived. This afternoon we will head out and see what we can find in these gloomy conditions.
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