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Selinda once again


Bush dog
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Last month, I was once again in Selinda, as everyone will have already understood, my favorite place in Africa, this time for eight nights. A few days later, there was still only one heavy downpour of one hour.

 

I first spent five nights at Main Camp and then three at Zarafa, in order to make game drives along the Savute Channel and the lagoon, and more generally in this part of the concession which was fairly easily accessible in the past departing from Main Camp and not being so nowadays and especially in this year of heavy rains, perhaps one of the most important since the year 2000. It was a good decision in terms of species seen, mainly giraffes in abundance, as in the past, and zebras, in fewer however, as generally all other species that the rains had dispersed.

 

On the way to Zarafa, I visited Explorer’s. As last year, some tents had been flooded after heavy showers, these were raised by about fifteen centimeters in order to avoid this problem in the future.

 

Water was everywhere, on the roads, on the plains and the pans were overflowing. Some large ones, as Twin Pans, would probably not dry out at the end of the dry season and the water coming from the mountains of Angola was just about to arrive. What impact will this have on the quality and frequency of sightings in the high season?

 

For starters

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Great start, Mike!!!

 

By twin pans, did you mean Twin Pools? by the Sundowner Strangler fig? (which had sort of fallen down too as of last year?)

Edited by madaboutcheetah
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@@madaboutcheetah

 

Thanks Hari,

 

No I really mean Twin pans, in the same area as Andre's pan. Here is a picture

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@@Game Warden

 

Thanks Matt!

 

A lot of pans are covered with that kind of weed. I do not know what it is exactly. There will be more pictures with hippos, ducks and geese.

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Mike, I think from memory there's a description of that green stuff at the airstrip? I think about 10-15 years they had to clear it to help the passage of the flood waters to the spillway and ultimately to Zib lagoon?

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@@marg

 

Mots was recently transfered, together with some other staff members of Main Camp, like Maggie and Bessie, to the brand new Duba Plains Camp. For that reason, I was this year guided by Matt. Reuben is still at Zarafa.

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Looking forward to reading and seeing more. Selinda is on my list for potential next safari!

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At Main Camp, like last year, at the same time, I was given the benefit of a private vehicle and Matt was my guide.

 

I quickly saw the two males who rule over the Selinda pride as well as the Wapuka pride. It was the only time during those eight days. The Selinda pride, which I did not see during this stay, was in the Explorers area. The four sub adult males had been recently thrown out by the two dominant males.

 

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As for the Wapuka pride (ten individuals), I saw it, when I was at Main Camp, during almost all the game drives. This was facilitated by the presence among them of a cub, only a few weeks old.

 

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Due to the non-abundance of their usual preys, they had to fall back on warthogs. To my knowledge, they killed four. In fact, there were probably more, mainly young ones. For the individual that had caught its prey, there was no question of sharing with others.

 

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A first series of birds.

 

Coppery-tailed coucal

 

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Black heron

 

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Red-winged pratincole

 

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Tawny eagle

 

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Wattled crane

 

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Carmine bee-eater

 

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Knob-billed duck female and ducklings

 

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And in the same pool

 

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First game drive, first but also last roan.

 

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More of the Wapuka pride.

 

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And a woodland kingfisher.

 

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I am a bit late to this thread, but I would like to say - super stuff as usual @@Bush dog.

 

May I ask - what do you use for stabilizing your camera+lens on game drives? Bean bag? Monopod? Some obscure gizmo from Really Right Stuff?

 

I ask because of some of the incredible detail in terms of "seeing every hair" on some of your lion portraits - such as the second photo in post #1.

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Thanks a lot, @@offshorebirder

 

Here, first of all, the shooting information of the picture you mentioned : ISO 800, f/10, 1/1000 s.

 

I have, for quite some time, abandoned the use of the monopod and the tripod, in my opinion, too restrictive and cumbersome. On game drives, I usually sit in front, near the guide. To stabilize camera and lens, depending on what is available on the vehicle, I can use either a beanbag or several blankets but most often I take pictures either hand held or by leaning my left arm on the door of the vehicle or on the dashboard. I sometimes even take the rearview mirror as a support.

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More pictures

 

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Taken from the balcony of my tent during a downpour.

 

Ilala palm trees

 

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Coppery- tailed coucal

 

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Third sighting of the Wapuka pride. The tiny cub is with them this time.

 

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Mike, Love those rain shots and that Coucal looks drenched in the downpour!

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@@madaboutcheetah

 

Thanks, Hari.

 

I love to make pictures in a rainy environment. Those coucals, in fact they were two, were indeed soaked to the skin.

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Continuation of the third sighting of the Wapuka pride.

 

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Always a pleasure to read (or rather look at) your reports. Silinda is looking good.

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@@pault

 

Thanks a lot! I'm definitely not a writer and so many things have already been said about Selinda. So, if it's not necessary and pictures speak for themselves, I prefer to restrict myself to the latter.

Selinda is indeed a wonderful place that never disappointed me.

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@@Bush dog

 

Your photos are, as always, simply wonderful. The close-up in Post # 12 of the lion claw (scratching its head?) made me smile. Looking forward to more.

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@@Alexander33

 

Thanks a lot for your kind words!

 

If I remember quite well, the claw belongs to one of the cubs and the head to its mother or one of its aunts.

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Super stuff, Mike - as is to be expected. Lots of stunning lion shots, and I agree with Hari - the rainy setting provides a most interesting background.

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