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Thanks, Michael - Yes, on my list is Namibia mainly Skeleton coast, dunes and desert Rhino/Elephant.

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Next stop Umzolozolo lodge in the Nambiti reserve

A leisurely drive past the Battlefields took us to Umzolozolo lodge in the Nambiti reserve.

This is a Malaria free reserve in Kwazulu Natal and was meant to give my wife a gentle introduction to being on safari before we would go to Kwando.

Umzolozolo is one of the Zulu words for Hoopoe and we did see a lot of them although they were more shy than I have seen them most other places.

The Nambiti reserve has a healthy population of game with good variety. All the big 5 are present + Hyena, Wild dog, Cheetah and lots of different Antelope species.

The Umzolozolo lodge is very nice with great views. We frequently had Nyala`s just outside the bathroom.

I remember that someone in another thread wanted to take pictures of Nyala`s. Was that you @@Tom Kellie ?

I can not remember anything about the food or wine so it was probably quite average for a safari lodge.

On the negative side the do not allow offroading. Normally this would not be a huge problem but in this reserve the roads are quite far apart. In two days we only saw 2 of the big 5. Elephant with 3 sightings and White Rhino with two brief sigthings after dark.

We were close to seeing Lions but missed them due to not being able to go offroad.

It gave my wife an idea of what it would be like on safari but for me it was a bit boring.



Secretary bird on nest






Kudu walking on air


Morning coffee. We could hear the Lions nearby but due to the policy of no offroading we never saw them.



Umzolozolo Lodge. There are now several lodges in the reserve.





The sundowner is probably the one that I remember the most. The guide had chosen a spot on ahill were we witnessed the sun setting and the full moon rising.








Lots of Eland



Next stop St. Lucia









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Really nice browsing kudu, and a fantastic sunset.

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From Nambiti we drove to St Lucia

There were a couple of reasons for visiting St Lucia. Visiting the wetlands, Whale watching, birding and maybe a dip in the Indian Ocean. We stayed at a local B&B in town.

Vervet Monkeys were abundant.



Many large Crocodiles were seen on a trip to the Mangroves. Unfortunately no Mangrove Kingfishers.









The Whalewatching was unfortunately cancelled. A storm a few days prior had caused a heavy surf so the the whale watching boat could not be launched from the beach.


We had hired a local Zulu for a birdwatching walk at the edge of town.

He managed to find several interesting species including Purple crested Turaco and Southern Banded Snake Eagle.

One of the target species was Narina Trogon. At the start of the trip I asked the guide and he told me that he had only seen it once that year (we were visiting in September). However towards the end of the walk his apprentice suddenly siad "what kind of bird is that?" A female Narina Trogon but it did not stay around long enough for pictures.





Trumpeter Hornbill








We truly enjoyed St Lucia but should have spent much more time including visits to Isimangaliso Wetland Park that has been so well described in a different report by @@Game Warden. http://safaritalk.net/topic/14604-isimangaliso-wetland-park/


From St Lucia we drove to Joburg to visit friends and then to Kwando in Botswana. The Kwando portion will be covered in a separate report.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi @@mvecht, it's actually a Grass lizard (Chamaesaura sp.). From the location, I think it's a Transvaal Grass Lizard (C. aenea) :)

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thank you for clarifying.

I did not know that there was such an animal as a legless Lizzard.

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@@mvecht There's a few different species of legless lizard in Australia too.

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Tom Kellie

I remember that someone in another thread wanted to take pictures of Nyala`s. Was that you @@Tom Kellie ?


~ @@mvecht


Yes! It was me.

In early October I'll be visiting Sabi Sands, South Africa.

It remains a hope that a nyala might cross my path when a camera and telephoto lens are in hand.

Tom K.

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@@mvecht - so many lovely shots of the variety Namibia has to offer, but your cormorants in the wave is a feat for both you and the birds. Such an unusual perspective.

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  • 2 weeks later...



Just catching up with this. I'm enjoying following your evolution into an Africa lover/addict. And I really like your accounts of interesting places in southern Africa that have captured my imagination for some time -- for example, the Drakensberg and the Caprivi Strip (always recommended for carmine bee-eaters, and it looks like that proved true in your case).

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