Jump to content

The Hunt for the Wild Dogs


Recommended Posts

xcrunch

Just back from our fabulous trip. There is nothing like a trip to Africa to bring life back into perspective. Brings goosebumps every time I think about what we did. In the next several days I will post our trip report and in particular our trackings of the wild dogs in the Kwando Camps.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 51
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • xcrunch

    24

  • madaboutcheetah

    9

  • Marks

    4

  • wilddog

    3

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Got to Lebala in time to refresh ourselves before going on a drive. Bates was our Guide and Mr. Moore was our tracker. He told us that he and Hobbs (who is at Lagoon) had searched out on foot and fo

Day 2 Began with us arriving at Little Kwara by 12.30 p.m. Just enough time to have brunch and get settled before going on our first drive. The cook/chef at Little Kwara is absolutely the best tha

The afternoon drive was not as successful as the previous two. We tried to refind the leopard but was unable to do so. I so much would have liked some better pictures than the ones I had gotten. Af

Posted Images

wilddog

Look forward to it @@xcrunch . Sounds as though the trip was a huge success. :)

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

The trip was everything that anyone could ever want or wish for wilddog. I really feel blessed.

Link to post
Share on other sites
madaboutcheetah

Kwando camps ...... Now you talking!!! Can hardly wait!

Link to post
Share on other sites
mvecht

Looking forward to the pictures.

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

Part of the joy of going on Safari is about the unexpected happening. Whether it be from the animals or the interactions of other guests. We had both on this trip. Firstly from our son and daughter in law who deciding to join us in Botswana for 10 days, to the laughter we had with the staff and guests telling us all their stories. In beginning our trip we had decided all to meet up in Maun, as we both were flying in from different parts of Africa, them from Uganda (they were doing trekking with the gorillas) and us from Namibia. And the one thing we did not want to do was to rush this safari in any way. In fact, I tried desperately to slow everything down so I could relish every moment more. (Almost like the movie “About Time” where they were able to relive moments in time) Unfortunately, it didn’t work that well but at least I tried. But coming in a day earlier would allow us to relax and catch up on all the events and drives that both of us have had up until this time. We had decided to stay at the Thamalakane River Lodge, in one of their stone and thatch chalets looking on to the river. A pleasant and tranquil place with all the hippos and cranes, and the beginning of many Botswana sunsets. Nothing can be better than to eat outside under the stars.

 

 

 

post-20599-0-26900100-1436091855_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-65896700-1436092236_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

Day 2

Began with us arriving at Little Kwara by 12.30 p.m. Just enough time to have brunch and get settled before going on our first drive. The cook/chef at Little Kwara is absolutely the best that we have had at any of the camps on this trip. After sampling almost everything available, we knew that we would have to fend off all temptations, which was not easy at all. Our Guide was Dix and the tracker was T-Bone for the four days we were at the camp. Charles was on leave, with Duff taking over his duties as camp manager. Less than ten minutes into the drive we came across several herds of elephants, and we were surprised at how aggressive they were. Dix kept telling us that he needed an exit strategy, and we never really knew why he was telling us this. Well it wasn’t long before we were charged by a bull. Not a mock charge, but chasing us as we flew down the road. Asking why the elephants were showing such behavior, we were told that the elephants have a long memory of when they still hunted on the concession until 2012. But it was not until we were back at camp that we find out of the incidents in the prior two weeks. Supposedly, a Shinde guide had taken a lone guest on a drive into the eastern portion of the Kwara concession and had encountered a herd of elephants. They had also charged the vehicle with the guide getting caught with no escape route. One bull had put through his tusks into the car door (which by this time the tourist had put herself under the seat), and had pinned the vehicle against a tree. He was moving the car up and down while the guide desperately was trying to put the car forward or reverse whenever he had a chance. Luckily, the tusks came off and the guide somehow found a way out. The guest obviously was ok, but the guide was subsequently released of his duties. So of course we asked had this happened to any of the guides in Kwara. At this same time look down at the car doors to notice that they had been damaged and dented. The reply was that they also were charged and hit a week earlier. So we now understood the skittishness of the guides around the elephants.

post-20599-0-24886600-1436095236_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-67444600-1436095275_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-59043200-1436095300_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-18326100-1436095328_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-79531400-1436095346_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-28039700-1436095410_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
wilddog

Lovely image of Cheetah Mum and Cubs.

 

Interesting news on the elephant incidents and somewhat alarming for those who were caught by the bull. :o

Link to post
Share on other sites
penolva

Part of the joy of going on Safari is about the unexpected happening. Whether it be from the animals or the interactions of other guests. We had both on this trip. Firstly from our son and daughter in law who deciding to join us in Botswana for 10 days, to the laughter we had with the staff and guests telling us all their stories. In beginning our trip we had decided all to meet up in Maun, as we both were flying in from different parts of Africa, them from Uganda (they were doing trekking with the gorillas) and us from Namibia. And the one thing we did not want to do was to rush this safari in any way. In fact, I tried desperately to slow everything down so I could relish every moment more. (Almost like the movie “About Time” where they were able to relive moments in time) Unfortunately, it didn’t work that well but at least I tried. But coming in a day earlier would allow us to relax and catch up on all the events and drives that both of us have had up until this time. We had decided to stay at the Thamalakane River Lodge, in one of their stone and thatch chalets looking on to the river. A pleasant and tranquil place with all the hippos and cranes, and the beginning of many Botswana sunsets. Nothing can be better than to eat outside under the stars.

 

 

 

@@xcrunch This is great to fill in my time until we are back at Thamalakane on August 26th after a camping trip to Namibia. Are you posting a TR of the Namibia section of your holiday? Love the cheetah photographs hope I get to see some as small as that! Pen

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

My first reaction Pen was not to do one, as so many have posted such great trip reviews just recently. And if you are going back to Thamalakane make sure you have one of their steak dinners! One of the better ones I have had, and as flavourful and tender as the lobo in Argentina.

Link to post
Share on other sites
madaboutcheetah

Cheetah cubs .... Oh my!!!!

 

Very disturbing incident at Shinde ...... Quite odd that a Shinde vehicle would drive into the Kwara concession. Historically, the guides at the two camps Shinde/Kwara going back in time have never got along - the opposite of what happens at the Lebala boundary with Selinda where the guides have always for the most part Co-operated!

 

The timeline as mentioned by your guide is a little off ..... The hunting operator (Bird Safaris) vacated the concession end of season 2008. Until very recently, breeding herds of Elephants did not even venture into the concession(perhaps restricted to the mopane woodland) - I'm glad they are finally confident enough to make a comeback. Very relaxed Elephant bulls were the norm

 

It is however disturbing to learn of aggressive Elephant bulls (perhaps in musth?) ........ I was under the impression that the agression came from breeding herds and the females.

Edited by madaboutcheetah
Link to post
Share on other sites
michael-ibk

Great start, but unsettling about the Eles. All animals I saw in Kwara last year were very peaceful.

Link to post
Share on other sites
madaboutcheetah

My friends were charged by Elephant last year at Kwara - they mentioned that Hobbs was brilliant and got them out of a sticky situation ASAP

Link to post
Share on other sites
wilddog

We were seriously charged by a matriarch last year at Little Kwara but we had inadvertently split her herd along a narrow, bush-surrounded track. The people on the back row were somewhat 'freaked out' as she chased us away. She was very close.

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

Cheetah cubs .... Oh my!!!!

 

Very disturbing incident at Shinde ...... Quite odd that a Shinde vehicle would drive into the Kwara concession. Historically, the guides at the two camps Shinde/Kwara going back in time have never got along - the opposite of what happens at the Lebala boundary with Selinda where the guides have always for the most part Co-operated!

 

The timeline as mentioned by your guide is a little off ..... The hunting operator (Bird Safaris) vacated the concession end of season 2008. Until very recently, breeding herds of Elephants did not even venture into the concession(perhaps restricted to the mopane woodland) - I'm glad they are finally confident enough to make a comeback. Very relaxed Elephant bulls were the norm

 

It is however disturbing to learn of aggressive Elephant bulls (perhaps in musth?) ........ I was under the impression that the agression came from breeding herds and the females.

Of the eight or so herds we saw during our stay at Kwara, we only saw one set of Bulls in Musth. This definitely could be why they were so overly aggressive, but they all were not happy with us making any close encounters with them almost impossible.

Link to post
Share on other sites
madaboutcheetah

Question on the cheetah family - do you know if they were at Tsum Tsum? or any particular landmark that was mentioned to you? Thanks

Link to post
Share on other sites
mvecht

Cheetah cubs .... Oh my!!!!

 

Very disturbing incident at Shinde ...... Quite odd that a Shinde vehicle would drive into the Kwara concession. Historically, the guides at the two camps Shinde/Kwara going back in time have never got along - the opposite of what happens at the Lebala boundary with Selinda where the guides have always for the most part Co-operated!

 

The timeline as mentioned by your guide is a little off ..... The hunting operator (Bird Safaris) vacated the concession end of season 2008. Until very recently, breeding herds of Elephants did not even venture into the concession(perhaps restricted to the mopane woodland) - I'm glad they are finally confident enough to make a comeback. Very relaxed Elephant bulls were the norm

 

It is however disturbing to learn of aggressive Elephant bulls (perhaps in musth?) ........ I was under the impression that the agression came from breeding herds and the females.

Hari

I have only seen very relaxed bulls at Kwara but I do remember Steve bringing a gun as we one day ventured into the Mopane woodlands and he mentioned that he brought the rifle because of Elephants.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Kitsafari

Love the cheetah cubs and mum! Will be following your TR with great interest as These are places we are interested to go - one day soon I hope.

 

Such excitement at LK! But it does sound like the elephant charges have gone on even before the shinde incident, so perhaps they are still edgy on the hunting factor?

Link to post
Share on other sites
graceland

What adorable cubs with their mum....sorry to hear of the ele incidents. I do remember a charge to our vehicle in 2012. Usually when we reverse and get the hell out, they stop but this one just kept coming and it was getting dark.

 

I did not know enough to be truly frightened, but the look on our guides face was serious. We were really just passing by on the way back to camp, but they were not pleased we were there. This was the first day of our stay at LK and first day in Botswana. What a beginning. :wacko:

 

Did not get to see any cute cubs either. Looking forward to more!

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

Question on the cheetah family - do you know if they were at Tsum Tsum? or any particular landmark that was mentioned to you? Thanks

They were just north of the airstrip, in an area past what I called the second bridge. Hope that helps!!

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

I don’t know what it is, but there is something about being in Africa that enhances your senses. We travel in our daily lives, ignoring most of the wondrous things around us and rushing to this function or that. Maybe it is because I am taking the time, but my sense of smell is awakened while we are in Africa. One of the most enjoyable things is the smell of Wild Sage in the air. It gives off this intoxicating aroma that relaxes you. Truly enjoyable!

Already only an hour into our first drive and how lucky can you be. Elephants, Hippos, Zebras and of course the Cheetah cubs. There were four not more than a month old. Absolutely adorable! The mother was hiding them in the tall grass. (But far to open for my liking). Could have stayed here for hours.

post-20599-0-90455900-1436116428_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-62272700-1436116543_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-22504200-1436116572_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-83428600-1436116594_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
SafariChick

My friends were charged by Elephant last year at Kwara - they mentioned that Hobbs was brilliant and got them out of a sticky situation ASAP

 

I had a similar situation at Little Kwara with just me and Hobbs in the vehicle - a group of eles were threatening to charge and we had a bit of a stand off but eventually Hobbs got us out of it. He said he knew that particular matriarch and she was rather "cheeky." It was a bit scary but I did trust he would get us out of it and he did!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Marks

Gorgeous cheetahs.

The elephant story is very alarming; I hope they're able to relax.

Looking forward to seeing more.

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

Day 3

We had seen so much in our first drive, so we wondered what more could we possibly see. We were about to find out later that night. But in the meantime, we come across a female leopard who has laid down along a wetland. We maneuver the vehicle around to get some better shots but unfortunately get stuck, less than five feet from the leopard. Had to wait until she left, and then had to call in the tractor from the camp to get us out. On the way back to camp we came across two female lions relaxing and sleeping in the shade.

 

post-20599-0-24949000-1436181324_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-50926700-1436181351_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-09512500-1436181395_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-57561900-1436181425_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
xcrunch

The afternoon drive was not as successful as the previous two. We tried to refind the leopard but was unable to do so. I so much would have liked some better pictures than the ones I had gotten. After searching a long time we all decided to go and try to find the cheetah cubs again. They had moved further North – East, but we did find them. It was obvious that they had not eaten and the mother desperately wanted to find a kill. We watched until the sunset and then started back to camp. This is when a call came in from another guide who had gone East almost to the border of the Shinde concession. A “Drama” was unfolding we were told, would we like to see it. Of Course! Dix said to all of us to get into the front two rows of the vehicle as he was going to drive very fast. We all hung on for dear life! and within 20 minutes came across the two male lions they call the “Residents”. They were marking their territory by rolling into the grass, and brushing against the bushes. In the background you heard the roar of lions and we were told that there was a group of four young males coming into the area that were going to make their claim. Deep down we were all hoping to see a fight between them, but it was almost completely black by this time. The “Residents” began to respond to the roaring of the intruders by roaring themselves, each time getting louder and longer in succession. We lost them when they went into some thick brush. But then low and behold we come across the four intruders. They continue to roar less than five feet from the car. All of us had shivers going up and down our spine. They began to cancel all the markings that the “Residents” had made, going from one bush to the other, and rerolling in the same spots that they had been. At this point all of us were in awe of what we were witnessing. Then a third roar chimed in from a totally different direction. We were told this was the Marsh Bros. ika “ the Hippos Killers” whose large territory goes from the Shinde Concession to the Kwara one. They were responding to tell both of these groups who the real boss was. And in a flash the “Drama” was over when the “Residents” decided to vacate the territory, and move further East. No battle – it was already 9.30 so we decided at this point to go back to camp. But the roaring continued for the rest of the night, and what an evening we experienced.

post-20599-0-75465400-1436183642_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-14909300-1436183671_thumb.jpg

post-20599-0-04227100-1436183694_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Safaritalk uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By using Safaritalk you agree to our use of cookies. If you wish to refuse the setting of cookies you can change settings on your browser to clear and block cookies. However, by doing so, Safaritalk may not work properly and you may not be able to access all areas. If you are happy to accept cookies and haven't adjusted browser settings to refuse cookies, Safaritalk will issue cookies when you log on to our site. Please also take a moment to read the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy: Terms of Use l Privacy Policy