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TAKE TWO: WE FOUND THE MIGRATION IN MORU!


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Another highlight is visiting the Retina Hippo Pool as there was much fighting and jostling going on between the members of this country club.

 

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Our Second Northern Tanzania Self-Drive Safari   21 Days in June, 2018     One of the things on my bucket list was to experience East Africa in the green season and photograph

The first afternoon we spot lions by a river and a leopard is in a sausage tree moving his carcass to another branch.  The next day we visit the Turner area that was teaming with gazelles, zebra,

Lake Manyara NP, 2 nights   Lake Manyara is certainly green, green, green and there are flowers everywhere. The vegetation along the tracks is very thick and even giraffes appear shorter and

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Back in Seronera, we visit the river area and find three lionesses high up in a sausage tree.  So this kind of behavior is not isolated to Lake Manyara.

 

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We are out of clean clothes so we visit Tumbili public campsite to wash clothes and take cold showers. We end up spending the night at Tumbili public. We are of course not the only campers at the public campsite and I miss the quiet of a special campsite, especially when some cooks start rattling pots and pans in the cage making breakfast for their guests.

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Tom Kellie
On 1/14/2019 at 11:23 AM, KaliCA said:

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~ @KaliCA

 

What a sensational image!

 

The color tone gradient is magnificent.

 

Thank you so much for posting this in your self driving thread.

 

Tom K.

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@Tom Kelliethanks, Tom, for the  compliment. Africa light is something special, as you well know. 

Thanks for reading along!

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The next day, we decide to drive out to Masai Kopjes, a stack of rocks clearly visible out in the savannah, south east of the airport. We spot Hyena chasing around a few wildebeest, but nothing comes of it. Then there is our first highlight of the day with a leopard climbing around the rocks, keeping us entertained for a while. 

 
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For a late breakfast we decide to picnic by a lone sausage tree. Bad idea. When leaving the car to get stuff for our breakfast, we are immediately attacked by huge biting black ants. With lightning speed they climb up on our clothes and find skin before they bite. Within seconds they were up in my hair. We had to dance and strip down to our underwear and help each other find the pinching ants all over our bodies. Funny now, but a big lowlight at the time. 

When scanning around, I notice a huge traffic jam south of the airport. Is it an accident or a cat sighting? We decide to check it out and I’m sorry we did. This is a really bad Seronera cat jam. There are about 10 lions who have made two wildebeest kills, one on either side of the main road. So guests leaving are stuck between guests who are game driving. It is a massive mess of metal. Some game drivers lose patience and drive off-road, circumventing feeding lions in the savannah. So bad. After a few pics, I ask DH to get out of there, but it takes a long time to be free of the jam. Lowlight for sure.

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Later, we watch a mother Ellie with her very young calf and my spirits lift a little. At the visitor center, we buy a few minutes of WiFi and can tell our kids that all is well. It’s also very pleasant to watch the sunbirds feed on nectar from tall orange flowers. All in all a varied day with ups and downs, but we get to sleep on Sero 4 again tonight. We should just build a little shack there and call it ours! When DH is brushing his teeth he says, “there are two eyes looking at me.” No worries, it’s another curious Hyena, probably looking for scraps. 

The mister is roaring while patrolling, the Hyena are whooping and all is well on Sero 4. 

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Treepol

@KaliCA love the sunset photo at Tumbili and the others in the post above giraffe, sunbird and tree lions.

 

That is a bad cat jam...

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Thanks for the compliment and for reading along. 

Yes, sadly, in Seronera most cat sightings  go together with jams, because most guides share a good sighting by radio. But then again, we had great sightings with none or just a few cars around. Location, location, location. 

 

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Tom Kellie

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~ @KaliCA

 

That's the elephant photo I've long sought.

 

Outstanding composition!

 

Thank you for posting it.

 

Tom K.

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@Tom Kellie Oh you are too kind! Glad you are enjoying my DH’s photography work. More elephants to come in Tarangire...

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penolva

Great photographs from your DH!. Those bites are so bad we remember them our first time in Tarangire. I was so glad I had my bug bat and managed to kill most of them in the car. Pen

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The next day we do our river loop and find a lone lioness, giraffe, baboons, and not much else. Where is everyone? On  a whim, we drive south and decide to go back to Moru for the day. We see some topis with babies, Hyena, and our first bushbuck. We are having breakfast at Lake Magadi and enjoy the company of flamingos as well as the company of a couple from SC and their guide on their first safari.06506E97-0B6B-4787-BFA3-480BDC4584E7.jpeg.4b5eb658d9b181af3d80408768c5d084.jpeg

 

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While game driving the southern loops, we encounter giraffe, a herd of zebra and wildebeest among the Kopjes and a big herd of buffalo.

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While doing the loop around the mountain we once again are witnessing a crossing, this time there are many zebra galloping across the river mixed in with the wildebeest. It’s our 5th crossing and we are so glad we came down here again. I’m fully enjoying the whole process of the animals approaching from all directions to form a line and I’m wondering, how do they know and who gives the signal? And later, as they mill around next to the river, which animals is it that finally makes a few decisive steps in the directions of the water, and who is making that first leap.  Leaders, males, females? And how is it that they all follow.....basically the whole thing is a mystery to me. I’m sure scientists have studied this behavior and there are answers to those questions. 

The only thing I hate to see is when small calves get separated from their mothers and then cry pitifully as the masses stream by them  73D3C66B-07D6-4DF1-BC84-72D0E88041D2.jpeg.0c5daf404cb38c170629fc8370ed3ad8.jpeg

 

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Tom Kellie

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~ @KaliCA

 

I love your lovebird image!

 

Lovebirds have been favorites of mine since I was a teenager.

 

Thank you for posting that.

 

Tom K.

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@Tom Kellie  

 

Glad you enjoy that pic. They are so difficult to photograph as the are always so busy and quick to change positions. Those held still for a second. Still amazing to see them in the wild outside a pet store!

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Later, during our lunch stop at the Moru Hippo Pool, we discover that the back tire is low on air. Then we spend some time back at the garage in Seronera having the valve of said tire replaced. Not a problem at all and at $10 certainly a cheap fix. The attendant at the gas station knows me by now as we have filled up numerous times at his pumps.0585CE20-F68B-4B7A-ACC9-E7C5482E8C58.jpeg.fa3629e2df7a23467b0d8018b56d1b42.jpeg

 

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For a nice ending to this beautiful day, we encounter more lions in the acacia trees along the river and they are beautifully silhouetted against the setting sun.

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Later, we are set up once again on Sero 4 and as I’m washing dishes I hear a rustling in the grass. Ah, it’s just the nightly Hyena checking out her human neighbors. So glad that even though we have nightly Hyena visits in the dark, none of them are  aggressive. 

Another day with a few memorable highlights is coming to an end on the savannah under the acacia tree in Seronera.E422D515-D0CF-4748-8B08-7D0588CCF558.jpeg.e8317ac5ca58909a99783d4481629830.jpeg

 

 

 

 

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Incredible amount of excellent sightings, and equally excellent photos! The buffalos in post #64 should be printed ... but then, you must already be out of free space on your walls?!

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@KaliCAyour report is bringing back so many great memories. One that makes me chuckle is the attendant who decided to "borrow" one of our tire stem caps while getting fuel in Seronera. Doing a self-drive, your experiences are so many levels deeper than a regular safari, 100% complete engagement! I really wish an operator similar to Bushlore would open in Tanzania. The design of vehicles in Southern Africa make the demands of setting up & taking down camp, cooking so much easier. You were also much more willing to be active after dark than us, by the time all light was gone, we were in our roof top tent reading.

 

 

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Finally had a few moments to sit down and read through your TR. Such a pleasure - great detail and, as always, wonderful photos. Your TR is making me look forward to our upcoming self-drive in Tanzania and Kenya. I am learning a thing or two...For example, it is good to know that Endabash has water. We are always looking for a place to get water when leaving Lake M and heading to Moru. Yikes - that is quite the mud on the way to Lakeshore. We have wondered why there are always such deep ruts when we arrive at the same campsite later in the dry season. I am almost certain that those lions in the tree in Lake M are in the same tree that we saw them in on our 2015 trip. I will have to send you a photo.  Yikes - those lions on the rim road are scary. So many unarmed/unaccompanied people walk along that road.  What a lovely view from Simba! Pity that you were relieved of so much of your produce. That TokTok picnic spot is very pretty, but always so crazy crowded at lunch. We have learned to go to the lovely lookout above the swamp instead - Engitati Hill. Shame you couldn't go the back route to Moru - we will hope to have better luck. Fingers crossed that the computers are working.  Being surrounded on Moru 4 by thousands of wildebeests must have been spectacular - I love the sound of the herds at night. That lion walking towards your vehicle must have given you quite the fright - odd that it was so aggressive. You do seem to have good luck at Sero 4 - what we heard the most at night were the night drive vehicles returning to those nearby camps. Your photos of the lions in the tree at Seronera are lovely - so clear and crisp! Love the hyenas snoozing on the road near the Maasi kopjes. What luck to find the leopard! That lion traffic jam is why we do not like the Seronera area - we far prefer Moru, even if it is at the expense of some cat sightings. Looking forward to more!! Will try to do a better job of keeping up. :-) Thanks for a great read! 

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@xelas how do you know we are running out of wall space? You are exactly right. We just finished a project for the foyer with some favorite pics on canvas. Have a look. 

 

 

 

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