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Trip to Selous and Ruaha , Adansonia paranoia !


africawild

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africawild

On our first night we were very tired and we thought we were going to sleep like kids but there was an elephant and some hyenas who disagreed .

 

First it was the pachyderm that began to eat and break branches right next to our tent .The noise in the silence of the night was shocking, we thought that the whole tree was going to fall on top of our bed.

When things calmed down and we were about to sleep , several hyenas began to howl , running , screaming and laughing around the tent , for a moment it seemed they were inside .

Later , right before sunset and before even the turtle doves were awake( and you know how early the awake ) , the sparrow weavers that were nesting in a tree nearby began an amazing and very laud concert that was going to be our alarm call every morning.

 

As soon the sun rose and wondering if I would have dreamed everything y went out but I could see that it was not a dream, there were hyena tracks everywhere.

The funny thing is that the following seven nights we slept six or seven hours without hearing anything , must have been the excitement of the first night.

 

 

A quick coffee and we were on the road before six-thirty . The day was sunny with some clouds, something that was going to be common throughout the trip as well as the severe heat .

 

We found these dagga boys first thing every morning . We knew them because of the white spot one had in the face .

 

 

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Not quite dagga boys !!

 

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Then by the lake impalas , baboons and birdwatching .

 

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We spent some quality time with a spoonbill , she was fishing a bit to close to a croc !!

 

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Some flying fish !

 

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Finally catch one ! By the way , don´t you think that foot has a Jurassic look !!!

 

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Some landscape and plain game

 

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Next some lions and impala baby boom.

 

Paco

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The boat safari lasted one hour less than usual because the big storm and the spider event. It was still raining when we started and light was very low .     Birding was very nice from the first mi

Thank you all !!   We landed in Selous and our guide was waiting for us . In just five minutes we were in camp with 2 other couples.   Our camp in Selous was Siwandu . My first choice was Lake Ma

We spent the rest of the morning with a herd of buffalos and then go back to camp .   In the afternoon , after some birding from our tent we decided we wanted to go to the Kilimatonge hills

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Safaridude

@@africawild

 

What does Siwandu consider an appropriate start time in the morning? I have heard that their sister camp in Ruaha (Jongomero) does the same thing... a late start...

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twaffle

The spoonbill and croc is extraordinary, love it. Yes to the Jurassic foot.

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Phew! Glad you got your early starts - I was worrried for you. Unfortunately I may have to wait a couple of weeks to read the rest of this, but I am really enjoying it so far. I love the giraffes and miniature waterbucks!

 

 

You arranged your gear so tidily and logically. Only a happy photographer would go to all that trouble. :)

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Soukous

Lovely spoonbill photos Paco. Spot on with the exposure. The others are fine too, but really taken with the spoonies.

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africawild

@@africawild

 

What does Siwandu consider an appropriate start time in the morning? I have heard that their sister camp in Ruaha (Jongomero) does the same thing... a late start...

8 a.m. ? Can you believe it !!! I am glad our Ruaha part was not with their sister camp.

Edited by africawild
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africawild

The spoonbill and croc is extraordinary, love it. Yes to the Jurassic foot.

Here is a crop of that foot !!!

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africawild

Phew! Glad you got your early starts - I was worrried for you. Unfortunately I may have to wait a couple of weeks to read the rest of this, but I am really enjoying it so far. I love the giraffes and miniature waterbucks!

 

 

You arranged your gear so tidily and logically. Only a happy photographer would go to all that trouble. :)

Yes , happy photographer but also compulsive , you should see the amount of gear i left behind !!!

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Game Warden

8 a.m. ? Can you believe it !!!

Can you request earlier than that only if you have a private vehicle?

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africawild

 

8 a.m. ? Can you believe it !!!

Can you request earlier than that only if you have a private vehicle?

 

It is possible also if everybody in the vehicle agree to do it , that was our case .

 

Paco

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africawild

In the afternoon our guide said there were some lions with cubs north of lake Manze so we decided to go in that direction and to try our luck.

 

On our way we stop with a small herd of elephants , not shy for Selous standard , they got very close to the vehicle !

 

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And impala nursery !!

 

 

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Some more shots before finding the lions

 

 

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And then we found the lions , well we found one vehicle that was with the lions. 2 females and 5 cubs . The cubs were sleeping under a very thick bush , not a good view at all , but minutes later one of the lioness got up and all 5 cubs soon went to greet her .

This was going to be our most crowded moment in Selous with 3 vehicles .

 

 

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It was easy to tell the females were hungry and needed to hunt . They went to get a drink and started to left the cubs behind . It was nice to see how all 5 cubs stayed still while the 2 females started to approach some impalas that were in the distance . Too bad we had to start to go back , in Selous you have to be in camp just after sunset .

 

 

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In our way back we came across this male kudu in warm light .

 

 

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And then sunset time , well we were driving fast and i was looking back towards the Beho Beho hills , the sky was on fire so i asked the guide to stop to admire the view and enjoy the moment.

 

 

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I am glad i did , a good way to end another nice day in Selous.

 

Paco

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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twaffle

The kudu really glows, beautiful.

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madaboutcheetah

 

@@africawild

 

What does Siwandu consider an appropriate start time in the morning? I have heard that their sister camp in Ruaha (Jongomero) does the same thing... a late start...

8 a.m. ? Can you believe it !!! I am glad our Ruaha part was not with their sister camp.

 

 

8am? Any particular reason for this?

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africawild

 

 

@@africawild

 

What does Siwandu consider an appropriate start time in the morning? I have heard that their sister camp in Ruaha (Jongomero) does the same thing... a late start...

8 a.m. ? Can you believe it !!! I am glad our Ruaha part was not with their sister camp.

 

 

8am? Any particular reason for this?

 

Hari , they say that "due to the topography of the land and the animals dependance on drinking water the main game movements in Selous occur a little later in the day as most animals make their way down to the lakes to drink only after the sun has come up " :wacko:

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africawild

Our last day in Selous was going to be quiet . We left again early , not the usual Siwandu way .

 

Minutes after leaving camp we came across the same dagga boys again .

 

 

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Try to catch this Ground Hornbills flying

 

 

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And then a small heard of buffalos , the only one we saw in Selous , they were very shy .

 

 

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We found some sleeping lions , 2 females to be exact . Not very interesting !!!

 

 

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We saw several herds of Blue Wildebeest . We notice here in Selous they where much lighter in color with darker bears . They are the Nyassaland sub specie . I also think they looked a bit bigger , stronger and not so ugly as their northern brothers !!

 

 

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Greater Kudus are common , we saw many of them in every drive

 

 

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The only Carmine BeeEater , White Throat BeeEater and Malachite kingfisher we were going to see in the trip

 

 

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Some more general shots , i really enjoy the landscape in Selous !!!

 

 

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On the way back we saw again the 2 lionesses , still not doing much !!

 

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See you in the afternoon with a boat safari at Nzerakea lake

 

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Paco

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madaboutcheetah

 

 

 

@@africawild

 

What does Siwandu consider an appropriate start time in the morning? I have heard that their sister camp in Ruaha (Jongomero) does the same thing... a late start...

8 a.m. ? Can you believe it !!! I am glad our Ruaha part was not with their sister camp.

 

 

8am? Any particular reason for this?

 

Hari , they say that "due to the topography of the land and the animals dependance on drinking water the main game movements in Selous occur a little later in the day as most animals make their way down to the lakes to drink only after the sun has come up " :wacko:

 

 

Thanks, Paco - Thank God you got out early in the morning to catch that good light...... Your pics are beautiful as always. Looks awesome and I hope to one day get there.

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I like the Impala nursery very much. Nice to get them relatively in the clear like that. And you got a lion nursery too! I am so surprised you saw no more bee-eaters or Malachite Kingfishers! Are you sure you were in Africa?

 

It's nice to hear that Selous is so uncrowded.... a maximum of three vehicles is pretty good.

 

 

 

Edit: Oh, I read carelessly first time...... Little Bee--eaters and Pied Kingfishers instead? :-)

Edited by pault
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@@africawild

I love the feling of place that you create with the wildlife in the landscape

I really like the impala nursery, and the light in the eyes of the lions is beautiful

And well done with the hornbill flying

Great stuff

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africawild

I like the Impala nursery very much. Nice to get them relatively in the clear like that. And you got a lion nursery too! I am so surprised you saw no more bee-eaters or Malachite Kingfishers! Are you sure you were in Africa?

 

It's nice to hear that Selous is so uncrowded.... a maximum of three vehicles is pretty good.

 

 

 

Edit: Oh, I read carelessly first time...... Little Bee--eaters and Pied Kingfishers instead? :-)

Yes Pault, plenty of Little Bee-eaters the rest of the trip and other kingfishers also , specially pied and striped .

 

About number of vehicles at sights , who knows what would have happen with a leopard o wild dog sightseeing , guides use the radio !!!

 

Paco

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africawild

Thank you all again !!

 

The plan for our last afternoon in Selous was a boat safari . In the morning some big clouds were building in the distance and some wind started to blow after lunch .

 

We were heading to the boat station for the boat safari when it started to rain , then pouring , so we took shelter by the bar .The storm was still going on and we ( other 2 couples , the guide and us ) were relaxed chatting while sitting at the bar´s sofas when the lady from Belgium screamed " snake " and one second later she corrected " spider " .

 

We all saw something falling from the roof just beside the guide . It was a big baboon spider that landed about 10 cm from his leg what made him take an Olympian leap !!!

 

Here is the culprit of the shock !!!

 

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We should have put something beside to see the dimension of the spider , i will say it was about the size of a Blackberry !!!!

 

 

Paco

 

 

 

 

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graceland

Terrific report on Selous of which we missed on our Sept. adventure. Now I am sorry we did not add in on. Speaking of departure times for game drives-"

though we walked.....

 

We left our camp everymorning about 7am; Moli our guide (formerly with Jongomero) would often say about 9:30am, "Now this is the magic hour when they come out"...so apparently it is norm in Ruaha/Sealous to see game later than we are accustomed to - say in Botswana. Though it was hot in September we did see many wild animals all times of the day. One day I looked at my watch at 9:30 and sure enough that is when we came up the lion in wait for the impala, and just about everyday the elies, giraffes, birds etc.

 

Terrible lighting for pics but great time was had! Not sure professional photogs would be as happy. But we loved being out all day long no matter the light.

Edited by graceland
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africawild

Terrific report on Selous of which we missed on our Sept. adventure. Now I am sorry we did not add in on. Speaking of departure times for game drives-"

though we walked.....

 

We left our camp everymorning about 7am; Moli our guide (formerly with Jongomero) would often say about 9:30am, "Now this is the magic hour when they come out"...so apparently it is norm in Ruaha/Sealous to see game later than we are accustomed to - say in Botswana. Though it was hot in September we did see many wild animals all times of the day. One day I looked at my watch at 9:30 and sure enough that is when we came up the lion in wait for the impala, and just about everyday the elies, giraffes, birds etc.

 

Terrible lighting for pics but great time was had! Not sure professional photogs would be as happy. But we loved being out all day long no matter the light.

Graceland , I also enjoyed your Ruaha walking adventure very much , it looks like quite an experience with a great guide .

 

I think early morning light not also is good for photography , i just enjoy everything i see much more with that warm light . Also i think the chance to find predator activity is going to be greater , normally ( not always ) they are under cover during the heat hours .

 

Still you have the chance to see that " magic hour " after a nice bush breakfast ;)

 

Paco

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africawild

The boat safari lasted one hour less than usual because the big storm and the spider event. It was still raining when we started and light was very low .

 

 

Birding was very nice from the first minute .

 

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But we also had the chance to see some buffalos and elephants

 

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And of course hippos

 

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The highlight of the boat safari for us was finding a skimmer flock , something we had not seen before .

 

 

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A soaked and confident eagle

 

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And a soaked but shy bush pig

 

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Monster

 

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And some more birding

 

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The boat safari ended with our last sundown in Selous

 

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And beautiful twilight by the bird colony

 

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Paco

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Exceptional pictures, Paco. Thanks for sharing these.

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twaffle

I loved all the photos from the boat but especially the last sunset. And the close up crocodile. And the birds. Well all of them.

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