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Tom Kellie

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Sighting in Progress



~ Photographed on 21 July, 2015 at 1:13 pm in Meru National Park, Kenya, with a Sony RX1 R camera.



ISO 100, f/8, 1/160 sec., 35mm focal length, handheld Automatic exposure.



*****************************************************************************************************



We'd had lunch at the Hippo Pool, and were continuing on our way, passing an unprecedented number of separate Lesser Kudu groups.



While pausing to admire a Reticulated Giraffe, ZHU Jinjie — 祝锦杰 — used my camera to show an older professor ‘at work’...or so he'd like to claim!



I like this image as it provides a fairly accurate sense of what it's like to be standing in the Toyota safari van, enjoying wildlife observation.



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Game Warden

Let's see your latest sightings: images for inclusing in the Latest sightings gallery of the new Safaritalk magazine.

 

Please upload you low res images here and then I'll contact you via PM to arrange the large res images.

 

Many thanks, Matt.

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Tom Kellie

~ Have there been no recent sightings?



This is a great thread, as it shows what's most recent, rather than waiting for a trip report to be written.



Does anyone have recent sightings from around their bailiwick?



If all goes well, I hope to bring back an image or two from this week's Sabi Sands safari for posting here.



I hope that when I return from South Africa others might have posted one of their recent sightings here.



Tom K.


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Tom Kellie

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Here They Come!



Photographed on 1 October, 2015 at 6:50 pm in Leopard Hills Private Game Reserve, Sabi Sands, South Africa with a Sony RX1 R camera.



ISO 3,200, 1/80 sec., f/4, 35mm focal length, manual focus, handheld Automatic exposure.



****************************************************************************************************



~ The frequency of African Wild Dog sightings throughout the safari at Leopard Hills in Sabi Sands exceeded anything expected. They popped up everywhere, both adults and pups.



This image was taken near sundown, when another group of wild dogs appeared, running past the vehicle, intent on their mission.



My appreciation of wild dogs went up and up with each sighting, even when their characteristic odor was potent, due to their proximity.


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fictionauthor

Wonderful to have a shot fresh from your current trip! I like the way the lower light level softens this image.

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Tom Kellie

Wonderful to have a shot fresh from your current trip! I like the way the lower light level softens this image.

 

~ @@fictionauthor

 

Thank you for such a kind comment.

Your warm appreciation, as well as the comment of @@Kitsafari, inspires me to post yet another Leopard Hills wild dog image.

What may be noted about the several African Wild Dog images I've posted tonight is that they occurred on separate days, reflecting the ease of sighting them.

Tom K.

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Wild Dogs at a Hippo Pool

Photographed on 3 October, 2015 at 6:12 pm in Leopard Hills Private Game Reserve, Sabi Sands, South Africa with a Sony RX1 R camera.

ISO 100, 1/80 sec., f/6.3, 35mm focal length, manual focus, handheld Automatic exposure.

****************************************************************************************************

~ We were headed out on the afternoon game drive for what would be the single most spectacular sighting and action of this week's Leopard Hills safari, although we had no idea what awaited us.

Turning a corner, the wild dog pups! They surprised us as they were in an entirely different area than where we'd observed them on previous days. As ever, the pups played together and lazed about.

They seemed like old friends, as we had seen them so many times. In the photograph one of the hippos is visible. Every time it made a loud bellow the pups stopped and looked towards it. Fun!

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Peter Connan

Wow @@Tom Kellie, wild dog on your first day! Wonderful.

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fictionauthor

@@Tom Kellie thank you for this wonderful panorama with so many Wild Dogs (and the hippo). I imagine it was especially delightful because it was a surprise as you turned the corner. I hope tomorrow is another fantastic day of sightings!

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Tom Kellie

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Nightfall Drongo



Photographed at 5:49 pm on 1 October, 2015 in Leopard Hills, Sabi Sands, South Africa, using an EOS 1D X camera and an EF 200mm f/2.8L II telephoto lens.


ISO 640, 1/1250 sec., f/2.8, 200mm focal length, handheld Manual exposure.


*****************************************************************************************************


Throughout every safari drongos have been a reliable indicator of a lively local ecosystem. Whenever I've spotted drongos, invariably there are larger mammal species nearby.


During my first-ever South African game drive, my heart leaped to see this drongo, instinctively sensing that it was a harbinger of fine larger game sightings, which turned out to be the case.

Edited by Tom Kellie

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Tom Kellie

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Flap-necked Chameleon



Photographed at 8:25 am on 25 January, 2016 at Leopard Hills Private Game Reserve, Sabi Sands, South Africa, using an EOS 1D X camera and an EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II super-telephoto lens.


ISO 320, 1/1600 sec., f/2.8, 400mm focal length, handheld Manual exposure.


*****************************************************************************************************


A surprising feature of my 9-day/8-night stay in Leopard Hills was the prevalence of flap-necked chameleon sightings, both in bushes beside the tracks and in the dust crossing tracks where they might easily be injured.


This chameleon was striding through the dust, it's light green coloration like a freshly fallen leaf. While photographing it, the eye moved about in the socket, looking over the surroundings with what must be an extraordinary sort of visual experience.

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Tom Kellie

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Black-crowned Night Heron and the Moon



Photographed at 6:56 pm on 26 January, 2016 at Leopard Hills Private Game Reserve, Sabi Sands, South Africa, using an EOS 1D X camera and an EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II super-telephoto lens.


ISO 2,000, 1/320 sec., f/2.8, 400mm focal length, handheld Manual exposure.


*****************************************************************************************************


Nycticorax nycticorax is a species found in both China and South Africa. An assiduous hunter of all small denizens of shallow water, black-crowned night herons may be observed at water's edge or perched above to obtain a sweeping vantage.


When this night heron flew from a small dam to the top of a tall bush, it perched in the line of sight to the full Moon, as shown in this image, taken beside the Sand River.

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Peter Connan

Lovely Tom!

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Tom Kellie

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Two Leopards



Photographed on 2 February, 2016 at 6:37 pm in Olare Motorogi Conservancy, Kenya with an EOS 1D X camera and an EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II super-telephoto lens.



ISO 25,600, 1/800 sec., f/2.8, handheld Manual exposure.



**************************************************************************



We parked for a ‘sundowner’ in the midst of a narrow protrusion forming an oxbow in the Ntiaktiak River. In a large fig tree growing up from the ground was a leopard resting near an impala kill.



On the ground below was it's mother, Nootare, and a sibling. The camera settings were adjusted for the dusk and tree shade conditions, to show Nootare and one of her two cubs.



It was an especially pleasing sighting as hippos were in the river, hyenas nearby and numerous birds calling with the coming of evening's darkness.


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Peter Connan

When one thinks of the rarest African animals, one invariable thinks of Pangolin, Honey Badger and Aardwolf, which, while undeniably are very seldom seen, are probably not actually all that rare.

 

I have been lucky with Honey badger numerous times, and I have even seen Pangolin (a whole family, in broad daylight and at touching distance), but there is another such animal of which I can find no mention on Safaritalk at all.

 

Until last weekend, this animal had eluded me, but on the 30th of January I took @@xelas and his wife Zvezda to Rietvlei, and there, at last, I saw this:

 

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post-24763-0-66579300-1455079742_thumb.jpg

 

And while Bushpigs are not necessarily rare, their nocturnal habits, and the fact that they cause huge damage to crops (which in turn makes them heavily persecuted), means that they are very seldom seen.

 

So now it's just Aardwolf and @@Tom Kellie's elusive Zorilla!

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madaboutcheetah

@@Peter Connan - I missed one by a few minutes in 2007 - still haven't seen one!

 

High on my list - Aardvark and Bush Pig

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TonyQ

@@Peter Connan

What a lovely sighting - and such cute babies.

(It is interesting to compare them to South American Tapir - a similar shaped animal - and the babies have very similar markings - good camouflage in the bush)

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TonyQ

@@Peter Connan

What a lovely sighting - and such cute babies.

(It is interesting to compare them to South American Tapir - a similar shaped animal - and the babies have very similar markings - good camouflage in the bush)

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michael-ibk

Great to see Bushpigs - and even greater to see them with piglets. Super pics, and glad to hear, you, @xelas and @Zvezda had a good time.

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Tom Kellie

When one thinks of the rarest African animals, one invariable thinks of Pangolin, Honey Badger and Aardwolf, which, while undeniably are very seldom seen, are probably not actually all that rare.

 

I have been lucky with Honey badger numerous times, and I have even seen Pangolin (a whole family, in broad daylight and at touching distance), but there is another such animal of which I can find no mention on Safaritalk at all.

 

Until last weekend, this animal had eluded me, but on the 30th of January I took @@xelas and his wife Zvezda to Rietvlei, and there, at last, I saw this:

 

And while Bushpigs are not necessarily rare, their nocturnal habits, and the fact that they cause huge damage to crops (which in turn makes them heavily persecuted), means that they are very seldom seen.

 

So now it's just Aardwolf and @@Tom Kellie's elusive Zorilla!

 

~ @@Peter Connan

 

Your photographs are TERRIFIC !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So sharp and well composed.

The images are deeply impressive to me.

Thank you so much for sharing these on Safaritalk.

What a treat for @@xelas and his wife!

BTW: As it happens, I spent about three minutes with an Aardwolf during a night game drive four days ago...

With Appreciation,

Tom K.

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SafariChick

@@Peter Connan so cool - great photos and the babies are adorable! @@Sangeeta and I were lucky to see one adult bush pig at Musekese but it was dusk and a 30-second sighting - no photos!

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PT123

This wise guy jackal was enjoying himself harassing a mating pair of lions...he would zip in and see how close he could get to the happy couple when they were resting between pairings. As soon as the male lion would flop down and the jackal would run over and taunt them. All the male lion needed to do was slightly lift his head off the ground and the jackal would sprint off...until the next round! Fun and games in the Masai Mara.

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Edited by PT123

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Tom Kellie

~ @@PT123

 

Looking at your very cool photograph takes me back to Masai Mara!

Excellent photography which brings to life the surprising animal interactions so often seen there.

Thanks!

Tom K.

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xelas

@@Peter Connan

 

I would never imagine a hairy pig would spark such an interest on Safaritalk! If one is noticed in my household, I am sent directly to bathroom to shave :D !

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Peter Connan

No hairy pigs shaving in MY bathroom @@xelas!

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