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Bush dog

My guide, KG, was waiting for me at Khwai airstrip.  45 minutes later, I arrived at Tuludi Camp.  Tuludi is part of the Natural Selection.  It’s a new camp, opened in July 2019 (more details on their website :  https://naturalselection.travel/camps/tuludi/). The pictures below shows my room and the splendid mosaic of the bar. 

 

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When I arrived, among the welcoming committee was a person whom I had met several times during my recent stays at Selinda, the waiter Junior.  The two other guides present in the camp, whom I did not personally know, are alumni of Kwando, Matt and Palipi.  I think @madaboutcheetah and @Wild Dogger should know them and maybe others too. 

 

All the camp units (7 rooms, the bar, the dining room, the kitchen, ...) are linked together by walkways and boardwalks.  The staff is very friendly and competent and the food, excellent.  During my stay, the camp was almost or completely full for a good reason.   At the end of December, Sable Alley, one of the 3 other camps on the reserve, was seriously damaged by a small localized tornado without causing any injuries, fortunately.  It was therefore closed to make repairs.  There were plans to reopen the camp in late February.  All reservations for the months of January and February were transferred to the other 3 camps, including Tuludi, on the reserve.  Here is a photo of Sable Alley, two weeks before reopening.

 

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Well why a dry green season?  Believe it or not, during the 10 days I was there, not a single drop of rain fell.  During the first four days, I saw in the distance a few heavy showers and lightnings but did not hear thunder.  The next 6 days, it was an alternation of clouds and sun with a refreshing breeze and a rise in temperature.  The light was gorgeous.  The only drawback for photography is the height of the grass but it can also sometimes be beneficial.  Apart from the large herds of buffaloes and elephants, I did not notice any big differences with the high season.  Concerning the wildlife, I saw 30 different species of mammals and more than 150 of birds.

 

Arrival day

 

A couple of Verreaux’s eagle-owls

 

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Giraffe

 

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African hoopoe

 

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Cape glossy starling

 

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Red-billed spurfowl

 

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This leopardess was spotted at dusk.  It is known as Nicky.  It is very comfortable with vehicles.

 

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  • Bush dog

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My guide, KG, was waiting for me at Khwai airstrip.  45 minutes later, I arrived at Tuludi Camp.  Tuludi is part of the Natural Selection.  It’s a new camp, opened in July 2019 (more details on their

Second day   We had heard them all regularly roar during the night.  They were not far away.  Time to drink a cup of tea and we left at 5:30 in the direction of calls.  In some places, a lig

Second day   Once the water crossed, they headed towards the interior of the island.  Black settled on a mound to scan this part of their territory.  Nothing to report, he continued on his w

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BRACQUENE

 

 

30  different mammals and 150 sorts of birds in the " so called green wet " season and fabulous light on top , especially on Nicky the leopardess and both starling and spur fowl  ; how lucky you were @Bush dog !

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mtanenbaum

gorgeous photos! Looking forward to seeing more!

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Amylovescritters

Oh my Nicky is breathtaking... loving thisTR

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madaboutcheetah

Lovely start, Mike .... Matt when at lagoon found a pangolin in 2014 and I rushed to the sighting after dropping my luggage In my room 

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Bush dog

@madaboutcheetah

 

Thanks, Hari!

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Bush dog

Second day

 

We had heard them all regularly roar during the night.  They were not far away.  Time to drink a cup of tea and we left at 5:30 in the direction of calls.  In some places, a light misty bluish veil was still suspended at ground level, conferring a little mystery at daybreak. Along the way we met this young giraffe.

 

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We knew we shouldn't be far away when a roar, this time very close, sounded.  Almost instantaneously, they appeared emerging from a large mass of bushes.

 

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For the proper understanding of the narrative, I will call them Black and Red.  Even before the camp was even built, Black ruled with its brother, which was not Red, over this part of the reserve.  They particularly liked this place and its surroundings.  One day, more or less four months ago, its brother disappeared.  We still don't know what happened to it.  Shortly before, Red had been spotted in the area.  Black's dominant position had seriously weakened.  It therefore found itself, in order to keep it, in the necessity of forming a new one.  Red slowly and cautiously approached Black who ultimately accepted it.  A new coalition was born.  By observing them carefully, we can however notice that within this new partnership, Black is THE dominant.  Black is the one who almost always leads the way.  The one who roars most often is Red, its "servant".

 

We followed them.

 

Black

 

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Red

 

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Arrived along a channel, they decided to cross it and we always follow them to the other side.  Red took the opportunity to quench its thirst in passing.

 

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To be continued

 

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Wild Dogger

Love the little Giraffe picture!
Matt was guiding us in Lagoon and Tau Pan some years ago. Very nice guy!!!
Unfortunately he was on leave when we were at Jackal&Hide (sister camp of Tuludi) this November.

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Bush dog

@Wild Dogger

 

Thanks!

 

Matt is indeed a very cheerful person.  He likes to talk a lot on the radio.  In fact, he was temporarily at Tuludi because of the closing of Sable Alley.

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Athene

@Bush dog beautiful pictures as always, I am very much enjoying your report. You were very lucky with the beautiful light in February.

We have been to Machaba Camp in 2017. Is Tuludi Camp close to Machaba?

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Bush dog

@Athene

 

Thank you for your comments.

 

I would say that, unless it is continuously raining, the light is always nice at this period of the year.

Tuludi Camp is located as the crow flies at about 20 kilometers west of Machaba Camp.

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AKR1

Shaping up to be yet another superb report, Mike.  Tuludi camp looks stunning and based on what you have said so far the Khwai  concession appears to be very promising. I have always believed the green season is one of the best times to visit the delta area with everything lush even though the high grass makes finding predators more difficult. And undoubtedly pictures look so much better than than the  Southern African winter. 
thanks for sharing

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Bush dog

@AKR1

 

Thanks a lot!

Not taking into consideration big herds of buffaloes or elephants, green season in the delta is always better than in the dry season because there is less water.  You can thus cover more ground before the plains are flooded.

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Bush dog

Second day

 

Once the water crossed, they headed towards the interior of the island.  Black settled on a mound to scan this part of their territory.  Nothing to report, he continued on his way, Red following him a short distance away.

 

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Black then settled on another mound covered with vegetation, this one offering several possibilities to shelter there from the heat of the sun.  Red soon joined it there.  This is where they would spend the whole day sleeping in order to recover from their night activities.  So we left them there.

 

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BRACQUENE

@Bush dog

 

Those Black and  Red photos are among the best lion series I have seen for a long time !

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Amylovescritters

Such gorgeous boys. Truly breathtaking images.Glorious light! 

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Kitsafari

beautiful photos of Black and Red, and Red has such a gorgeous coiffured hairdo. Love the backlit Black (?) against that glorious morning light. 

Edited by Kitsafari
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AKR1
11 hours ago, BRACQUENE said:

@Bush dog

 

Those Black and  Red photos are among the best lion series I have seen for a long time !

+1. 

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Hads

Impressive big boys. 

Enjoying your TR @Bush dog

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Bush dog

Second day

 

Some last pictures made during the morning game drive.

 

Hippo’s territorial behaviour

 

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Wahlberg’s eagle

 

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Scrub hare

 

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White-headed vulture

 

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Woodland kingfisher

 

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madaboutcheetah

Love the Woodland KF!!! 

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Bush dog

Second day

 

These are some photos taken in the afternoon of the second day.

 

Bennett’s woodpecker

 

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Wattled cranes

 

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Sable antelopes from a small herd of a dozen individuals.  They will be seen again a couple of times during my stay.

 

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African fish eagle

 

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