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Madikwe - Awesome time @ Buffalo Ridge with the family


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Caracal

Well that for sure was a game drive to remember! Wonderful sightings.

Curious as to what Mr Brown No 3 is chewing/toying with?

No apologies needed for cheetah overload.

Well done to your daughter for the lovely zebra with foal.

Think old man leo looks regal.

Enjoying this greatly.

 

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Family Safari in Madikwe A small taste of what's to come - on our first Madikwe game drive.  

A couple of weeks after FIL (Father in law) and I came back from a self driving Safari in Kruger the entire family all went to Madikwe.   The entire family included my wife and 3 kids plus F

I must admit it was good to get into a nice Safari routine with the Family and be driven around by a guide. How did the kids go on Safari - They were fantastic. They completed all 6 game drives (

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Big_Dog

Three brown hyaena! And two in one day! Great eye level shots of the third one especially!

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LarsS

WOW! That was really an awesome gamedrive! One of those days you won't forget. Special sightings and great diversity.

All your photos are really nice! The light&dust set a perfect setting, a great photoshoot with cheetahs and a very nice angle of the Old Man, makes him even more majestic. I also particularly like the first zebra picture, drinking from his own mirror image. And that shaft tailed whydah is a really pretty bird!

I can't recall having seen a hartebeest in Madikwe. Did you spotted that one only or did you see more of them?

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Hads

Thanks @Caracal for following along  - from memory the Brown Hyena was chewing on some smallish bones. My daughter does enjoy taking photo's as well.

@Big_Dog thanks for your nice comments - we got lucky with the Brown Hyena thats for sure.

 

@LarsS - that was the only red hartebeest that we saw. We did go looking for Oryx on some of the open plains but could not fine them. Elliot mentioned there is a good population of Oryx in the park.

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Kitsafari

Awesome  sightings of Mr Brown!! I love hyenas too.

 

And no such thing as an overload of cheetahs. 

 

May I ask how many guests does buffalo springs put in one vehicle please? And can you remind me please how many cars at one sighting?

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Peter Connan

Incredible Brownies!

 

Your mystery bird is a Pied Babbler.

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Hads

@Kitsafari thanks for following along. Buffalo ridge we had 9 people in our vehicle (7 was from our family). At sightings there seemed to be a maximum 2 cars.

@Peter Connan thanks mate for the bird ID.

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LarsS
On 5/28/2019 at 10:55 PM, Hads said:

@Kitsafari thanks for following along. Buffalo ridge we had 9 people in our vehicle (7 was from our family). At sightings there seemed to be a maximum 2 cars.

@Peter Connan thanks mate for the bird ID.

 

We also had 9 people in our car, they also used only 2 cars. The first day there was a big family and after a bit of puzzling we had 2 drives with 10 people in the car. I didn't mind a lot and was keen on the opportunity to jump in front, next to the guide. My dad was also keen on that position and sat there the next drive. For close up sightings it can be nice to sit lower and feel a bit closer to the animals. May be the last drives were with less than 9, but not sure anymore, if it was so, it was because of less guests at the lodge.

We also had just 2 cars at the same time at a sighting. Good policy, I believe.

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Hads

Game Drive 4

 

Our numbers were down on this mornings drive as my youngest wanted a sleep in along with mummy.

In general it was a pretty quiet game drive but we still had some cool sightings.

 

 

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Red Crested Korhaan or the Rugby ball.....

 

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Burchell's Coucal

 

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Our next sighting was one of my most memorable at Madikwe.

I have not often seen Black Rhino when on Safari, when we came across this guy we noticed he/she only had 1 ear.

Elliot quietly drive closer and stopped the engine.

The Rhino became quite inquisitive which is strange for Black Rhino - this guy reminded me of a character that could be in a kids movie.

 

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The Rhino then walked behind a small Sicklebush tree closer to the car and started sneaking a look at us - he seemed very curious and slowly came closer to us within about 10 metres or so.

 

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Hi guys.......

 

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The very noticeable hooked lip of the Black Rhino.

 

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We had not long left the 1 eared Black rhino when we came across another - this one was quite shy and did not hang around too long.

 

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We stopped for morning tea.

The kids loved the ground squirrel.

 

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Cool markings on the back.

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Continuing on we came across a Kori Bustard

 

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LBR with a family of Myna birds ( not sure what species of Myna though??)

 

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A flying banana with breakfast.

 

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Hads

Game Drive 5

For some reason we did not take many photo's on this game drive.

We spent the first hour intensively looking for a leopard which had reportedly been seen - no one could find the spotted cat though.

It was still a very nice drive - it had been quite overcast today and the sunset was stunning.

 

By the time I started taking any photo's it was quite dark and my photo's are quite bad.

 

 

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You gotta love African sunsets

 

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We did not have many Elephant sightings in Madikwe - on our last evening drive we came across 2.

Poor Photo's sorry :( .

 

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Old dagga boy getting a drink.

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Not far from the Buffalo was 5 female lions about to head off hunting for the night....

 

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We got back quite late and my youngest was absolutely shattered - it has been some big days on SAFARI for him.

 

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LarsS

You've found a black rhino, good sighting!

 

And great job on the photos of lions by night, awesome photos!

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Hads

Game Drive 6 - Last game drive at Madikwe for this trip.

All of us were up early to make our final game drive. The kids are always keen for an early morning Milo and Rusk.

 

The first half of the drive there was a sprinkling of general game.

Impala do not always get the time they deserve but are a stunning antelope.

 

 

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LBR in full pose position.

 

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These 2 Impala Rams were having a good old tussle.

 

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Black Shouldered Kite was also obliging for a photo.

 

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Next up we were very luck to come across 3 Rhino's which included a young calf. When I see rhino on Safari I savior the moment as we don't know the fate of these beautiful creature's.

We enjoyed watching them for awhile before retiring to have a bush elephant milk and a rusk.

 

Mum and bub.

 

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The Old man.

 

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Mum has had her horn trimmed down.

 

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I'm getting hungry mum.....

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Milk is good stuff.

 

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You have to enjoy the smaller things in life as well.

 

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Hads

Elliot got a call - LEOPARD sighting......... We are off guys.

The sighting was quite  a distance away but closer to our lodge- so off we went hoping the leopard would hang around so we could get a look.

The great thing about Madikwe is you can go off-road - and Elliot surely did, he had no choice if we wanted a glimpse of the beautiful old lady.

 

It started with a tail........ Following her was tricky through the thick scrub.

 

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Bang, crash and plenty of bumps - we kept close by the impressive cat.

As you can see by the photo's she was quite thin - Elliot says she is about 12-13 years old and is usually very relaxed around vehicles.

 

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I wish these guys would leave me in peace she must of been thinking.

 

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She went and sat behind a dense bush peering out through the leaves.

 

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I love this photo with the leafy border.

 

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After awhile she hoped up and off she went again - we left her to the other vehicle.

What a way to finish off our wonderful Safari in Madikwe :) - we were all very excited.

I was so happy for the kids to see this beautiful leopard up close and personal.

 

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Hads

We went back to Buffalo ridge and had a hearty breakfast and said our goodbye's to all the wonderful staff.

A big thanks to Elliot as well who was a wonderful guide.

 

Our Dutch travel buddies also loved their time in Madikwe.

 

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Goodbye's with Elliot.

 

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The big question would we come back to Madikwe and Buffalo ridge - simple answer we most definitely would, we had a fantastic time.

 

Thanks to all who followed along - I hope you enjoyed the report

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Kitsafari

looks like a great successful trip for the kids and the adults. what a lovely send off by the leopard; i hope she found something to eat too. 

 

thank you for sharing such an enjoyable TR. 

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Hads

Your Welcome @Kitsafari, I am glad you enjoyed the report.

 

Question to anyone who has been to Mashatu and Madikwe - which one would you prefer and why?

I was looking into Mashatu in a couple of years time but the price is very expensive, especially if I take the whole family.

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Caracal
On 6/4/2019 at 2:36 PM, Hads said:

The kids loved the ground squirrel.

 

I love them too - does that make me a very old kid?

 

Thanks for this excellent report wich has certainly got me thinking about Madikwe - enjoyed it all.

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Hads

Thanks for following along @Caracal - we loved Madikwe.

Kids can never be too old :) 

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Towlersonsafari

lovely report @Hads do you think it Madikwe makes a good add on to Kruger?

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LarsS

Thanks for sharing your safari with us @Hads! I've enjoyed it a lot!

 

Some very good sightings on your last drive as well. You talked about the fate of the rhino and taking some extra time to appreciate seeing these animals. It looks like the rhino mother is also a bit emotional with her wet eye.

 

I think you've been really lucky to have spotted the leopard. I believe they are a bit hit&miss in Madikwe. During our 4 nights there wasn't a trace of a leopard. Elliott told us they move in and out of the park, so sometimes there's none and sometimes there are a few.

 

Cool picture of the dung beetle as well.

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Hads

Hi @LarsS - Elliot mentioned the same to us about the leopards moving in and out of the park, we got very lucky on the final morning.

@Towlersonsafari after self driving in Kruger it was a pleasant change to be on the back of a Safari vehicle being escorted around.

Madikwe offers something different as to the scenery and a few different species.

I feel Madikwe is a great add on - minimum stay would be 3 nights though.

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gatoratlarge

Wow---really a great place to see a little bit of everything...cheetah, lion and leopard, brown hyena(!) ---both species of rhino!  I think a number of rhinos lose their ears to hyenas when they are young....the mother fending off some of them and others rush in and tug on their ears..I saw my first rhinos at The Ark in Aberdares NP years ago and this one rhino that visited the waterhole had a long horn and two missing ears for that reason---at least that's what they told me :D

 

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Hads

Thanks @gatoratlarge that makes sense with the Hyena. Yeah we got to see a good mix of wildlife.

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Peter Connan

Lovely sightings and a great report @Hads

 

The mystery mynas are Wattled Starlings

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michael-ibk

You are really lucky to enjoy a safari with your whole family, such a special - and I´m sure bonding - experience for all of you. How I would have loved to do that as a kid, I´d even ask my parents about going to Africa but I suppose that was a far more unusual thing to do back then than now.

 

The lodge looks very comfortable, and the pool very inviting. Absolutely awesome Brown Hyena sightings, very special indeed. That Old Man Lion is a very cool-looking dude. And that One-Eared Rhino looks very endearing somehow. A really fun Dung Beetle photo - and may I add you have several really great shots. And what a great Leopard finale - now that´s the way to end a safari.

 

What was the sighting your kids enjoyed the most?

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