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    • Tom Kellie
      ~ Pigeons in the Paris CDG Roissy Aéroport are bilingual?   Who knew?  
    • Toxic
      Thank you @AndrewB, @michael-ibk, @duenelle, @Tom Kellie,  @Zubbie15, @Bush dog, @janzinand everyone else for following along 😊   Nzumba Day 2 - Continued   After the leisurely pace of the morning drive, the afternoon was different. I have tried to upload unlisted YT videos, where the camera fails in low light situations the videos and some narrative will have to do... lets see if this works!   We first found the pride from the previous evening a little further down from where we saw them. They were lounging near a small body of water in the reeds, with the youngsters enjoying a rubber hose.  In the second video, towards the end where the lioness finishes drinking, you will see her bum injury in much rawer detail than the photo posted yesterday.    The sun was setting, but we stayed with them. It's always fun watching lions do more than just lay, and these ones seemed to be on the move. A notable absence from this group were the two dominant males. For now.       Once the final lion had wandered off, we continued to follow them. Something had spooked them as the young males kept looking back. I'd like to say they were very intimidated by my presence but that would be a lie. We decided that we should check out the direction they kept looking back at, so having made mental notes of their last known location, off we went.  Not 5 minutes up the road, the two dominant males were hot on the pride's tail.   Ryan, being the skillful guide that he is, turned us around in sand and across some treacherous terrain, and found the pride again. They were relaxing, but not for long.    My recommendation is to watch the next videos with sound on.  I actually didn't expect family drama to unfold nor for crap to hit the proverbial fan so quickly, I was just innocently filming the sun go down over the horizon. 😇     All the lions dispersed and we were off.    We lost them for a short while in the bush but we were soon reunited.   There was a huge commotion, the dominant males were not happy with the younger ones, we followed them overlooking the dry riverbed.      It was shortly after the clip above, after we had re-positioned ourselves for what would be the final time, that our vehicle died. It was a quick death, but light was running out, and we had an entire pride of active and fighting lions in our presence. What a blessing!    I know the following videos aren't great in terms of visuals, but, hopefully the sounds and what little you can see make up for it!       With the car dead, we radio'd for help. I don't know anything about cars but apparently just a small nudge to get it to roll would have started the battery again.    We enjoyed the sounds of the bush, the lions choosing to do their best performances for Klaserie's Got Talent, and I snapped these photos of the moon (if the spotlight wasn't on there was nothing one could really see) and a final picture of one of the dominant males, now with a brand new battle scar.            It took 30 minutes for another guy to come help us, but the problem was with lions in every direction, getting out to attach the cars to drag us was going to be a problem, and nudging us over the river bank ridge, where even more lions lay waiting, was possibly even more problematic.   In the end they pulled up beside us and we had to do what any brave sailor does - abandon ship. We gathered our belongings and jumped into their vehicle as stealthily as we could (I am not very stealthy) and left the car there. The couple who were in that other vehicle were on their honeymoon, and the wife did not seem like she was having a great time. Under her breath were "I'm hungry", "Did we have to help them?" and "When are we going back to the lodge?".  Never mind...    Eventually we were met by another person with a different car that would take us back to our lodge, and the newlyweds were off to theirs. Good luck to them. I snapped this final image of a giraffe's silhouette against the night sky. We made it back to the lodge with a new car but all in one piece. What a great drive!      
    • Towlersonsafari
      an evening walk round our local reserve produced some nice light and an even nicer Barn Owl  
    • kittykat23uk
      As dusk drew in, the vista changed completely. Moisture evaporating from the marsh-covered the landscape in waves of fog and mist. At this time of year, the sun is not below the horizon for long and dawn broke behind the bank of fog, creating a very atmospheric sunrise. A wolf appeared in the treeline, heading towards the carcass. He lost interest quickly and trotted towards our hide where he foraged for any tidbits of salmon that were left. The remaining mist sucked the colour and contrast out of these images but the dewy grass makes for an interesting image in my opinion.    P6121140 by Jo Dale, on Flickr   P6121171 by Jo Dale, on Flickr   IMG_20240612_220343 by Jo Dale, on Flickr   IMG_20240612_221330 by Jo Dale, on Flickr   IMG_20240612_221508 by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Moody skies at Kuikka by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Moody skies at Kuikka by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Moody skies at Kuikka by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Misty Sunrise by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Misty Sunrise by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   A young White-tailed Eagle swooped down to pick up some distant scrap of food and a bear made its way along the back of the marsh, just by the treeline shortly before we were due to leave the hide.  Apparently it, or another bear was spotted by some guests in an adjoining hide making its way behind us. We couldn’t fathom how we’d missed that ourselves!    IMG_20240613_033337 by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Barn Swallow by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Kuikka by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Kuikka by Jo Dale, on Flickr   P6131308 by Jo Dale, on Flickr
    • janzin
      We headed toward where Joseph had heard that the Enkoyonai pride was gathered by the Ntiakitiak River.  This was quite a bit distant from camp, smack in the center of the conservancy. We arrived to find lots of lions and cubs along the top bank of the river, most in high grass (as usual.) But soon, one by one, they started descending down to the river bed.  As we were on top of a rather high "cliff," we had a great vantage point and it turned out to be one of the best and most fun photo sessions I've had with lions!   A female comes down to drink.     Poses...     Steps gingerly across. Don't want to get those dainty paws wet!   I think this one might be a young male.     A cub makes it to the other side...     Where there's the remains of a young giraffe kill to play with!     We kept hoping one of the lions would leap across instead of walking on the rocks.   Another lioness comes down. Will she leap???     YES!!       Another one comes along, but takes the easy route.     This one is not too happy with the water I don't think.     She leaps!  It was really too bad they were leaping in the wrong direction..     But it was so much fun to try and catch them in flight!     Now came the big male.  He's way to heavy to leap, I think.   So he gingerly walks across.       And stands for a final majestic pose. This lion, I later learned, is Olonyokie. I believe he's still around.     What a great morning with the lions!  
    • kittykat23uk
      I spotted a red fox around 1145, it was quite distant and didn’t approach, but at least it paused long enough for a record shot.    Red Fox by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Fox by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Scarface then put in an appearance, but it was very dark at this point in the night. Still, he remained in the area for about 20 minutes, ripping into the pig carcass and then approaching the hides looking for other tasty morsels.   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Wolverine by Jo Dale, on Flickr
    • kittykat23uk
      Night 4 was a lot busier at the base camp, so since Ian wasn’t joining me that night, in order to have some company I joined a couple of ladies in a bigger hide at Paradise. Our first sighting was of the wolves, who came and went for around 2 hours. We had a fabulous experience with the female wolf who, after eating some of the salmon, began howling right in front of our hide. She was soon joined by her two packmates at the edge of the forest where they soon melted into the trees, but then they all joined in wolfsong from the cover of the forest. It was eerie and beautiful and sent shivers down my spine!    Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Eurasian Wolf by Jo Dale, on Flickr    
    • Treepol
      Day 4   Sadly, our full day on Rebun is impacted by the weather that remains stubbornly grey and showery. Rebun Island is part of the Rishiri-Rebun Sarobetsu National Park and is famous for 300 species of flowers, many of which are endemic. Koichi drives us around the north of the island with a brief stop at a Slaty-backed Gull nesting site where chicks are already out and about. The Slaty-backed Gull was the most commonly seen gull of the trip.                  The next stop is for the critically endangered Rebun Orchid.         We stop at the northernmost point to check out the huge Spotted Seals and admire their attractive fur – a bit like the dalmations of the sea. We had good views of the seals swimming and playing in the sea as well as resting on a haul out.         Opposite on a hilltop, a soggy Amur Stonechat braves the weather. A summer breeding visitor, this bird may have been questioning the decision to fly north this June. We have lunch at the ferry station cafe and leave on the 2pm ferry, 3 hours earlier than planned due to deteriorating weather. Some of the group are delighted to discover they can buy tins of hot coffee from a cold drink vending machine at the ferry terminal. Rather than join the group outside on the deck, I decided to stay inside in the toasty lounge on the return trip to Wakkanai, stretching out on the floor with the support of a comfortable back rest – just like a local.   Back at Wakkanai the sky is overcast but luckily it’s not raining, so we return to an area around airport to search for the Eastern Yellow Wagtail. Other birds seen were Reed Bunting, Masked Bunting and Latham’s Snipe. This Snipe migrates north from Australia to breed. During the trip we had numerous sightings of these birds perched on reflectors, barns, electricity poles and fences as well as groups flying overhead at Sarobetsu Wetland. The bird is named for Dr John Latham (1740-1837) a British physician, naturalist and author. He was friendly with the collectors and naturalists of the time and examined most of the species of Australian birds that reached England such as the emu, Wedge-tailed Eagle and Australian Magpie.     Sea urchin fishery Fishing for sea urchins is a Rebun Island tradition that is still practiced by a few families. Koichi was able to provide a full description of fishing for sea urchins as he had participated in a tourist activity some years ago. The short season of just 4-5 weeks is running now. The fishermen are permitted to fish for one hour at 6 am. The boats are handled by a single operator who lies in the boat wearing a scuba mask for visibility and he steers the boat from a side rudder using his feet. He carries a 3 metre pole with a hook at one end that he uses to prise the urchins from the rocks. A good fisherman can harvest a small box, maybe 5 kg in a day and a good-sized urchin sells for $20US. Koichi says the guys who are really good at catching urchins are pretty old and have honed their skills over many years. He also says there is no way to steer a boat using just the feet!                      
    • Bush dog
      @madaboutcheetah Hi Hari, I did not have great discussions about wild dogs with the guides but it seems that they were more present some years ago while at the same time it was rarer to see leopards.  So, I would not say that it is comparable to South Luangwa or Sabi Sands where they have been present for decades.  As for cheetahs, there were sightings in April this year.  
    • Bush dog
      @Peter Connan Thanks a lot for your comments !  
    • Toxic
      @Zubbie15 A fantastic report and photos! I hope you have your topi sunsets up on a wall or in a gallery somewhere!   
    • kittykat23uk
      Some more wildlife around the camp, a few playful red squirrels, house martins and siskins:   Siskins by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   House Martins by Jo Dale, on Flickr   House Martins by Jo Dale, on Flickr   House Martins by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr   Red Squirrel by Jo Dale, on Flickr
    • Toxic
      Nzumba Day 2    The morning drive was uneventful with not much to report on. We came across some kudu, a small bachelor herd of buffalo, a lone hyena and a threesome of lions (two chaps and one girl, not related to the previous pride).          A photo to show how much water was left in the river      Nzumba overlooks a small watering hole, so in between drives I enjoyed watching giraffe, zebra, impala and some wildebeest come for a pint. It was also frequented by the jackals, hyena, elephants, and one morning a lone rhino - more on that in a later part.      I am someone that enjoys a mid-afternoon nap on safari (early wake-up calls are not my thing!) and on this day I was woken from my slumber from a tapping at the window.   It was a side window, which I thought was weird; if anyone was trying to get my attention, surely it would have been the windows to the front of my room?   I pulled back the window and what was actually tapping the window was a hornbill and his mate.  He was quite startled seeing me, but he did come back. I watched these two for approximately 30 minutes, having a great time. I'm not sure what they were trying to achieve but I enjoyed it none the less.       The evening drive was much more eventful. We had found the pride of lions from the night before. I believe it was a full moon, and our vehicle died.
    • HeatherY
      I’m very much enjoying your report. Your photos are fabulous! We also had Julius as our driver at Lion Camp, so It looks like he went from us to you. Overall he was good to us, but I can relate to your  comment about rushing on occasion.  I also understand some of your comments on the camp in general. While we enjoyed our time there, it did have a different feel compared to other camps we stayed at - not nearly as relaxed - and having seen how the camp manager interacted with the rest of the staff, I feel that may have contributed.     Thanks also for clearing up which cheetah we saw!  I kept thinking it was Namanyuk but it didn’t sound right and my notes were a bit of a scribble, but I see now it was likely Nishapae with her four cubs. We never saw her again so it might have been one of the last sightings before she left Naboisho (we saw her from one of our drives when we were staying in Ol Kinyei).  Mara North is on our list for consideration for our next trip, so I’m going to revisit that part of your trip report when we get closer to the planning stages. I think your camp-style is similar to ours.  I look forward to seeing what the rest of your trip brings!    
    • kittykat23uk
      Yeah definitely, it was fantastic to see a wolverine again! This is why I love Kuikka, you have a chance for the big 3.. We did debate doing two different sites this year to try and increase the chances of wolverine but Ian decided he didn't want to do too much driving, so after some discussion we settled on Kuikka again. 😁
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