These images caught my eye while I was trying to decide what to work on this week. I do love a dramatic sky, and while the rainstorms I can do without, the clouds at sunset are beautiful watch, as the colours change moment to moment.
2023-03-12: Safari Sampler
Today I thought I would share a selection of a few different safari images. Part of the excitement of being out on game drive is never quite knowing what you may see around the next bend in the road or over the next hill; but, on a South African safari, you’ll probably have the opportunity to see all of these at some point.
2023-02-25: Hippos on land
While on a day trip to Chobe National Park, our group did both a game drive and a boat cruise, which was similar to my experience in Chobe 2013. In 2013, we saw multiple hippo pods in the river, most with huge numbers of members. On this trip, hippos were another animal that was a rarity, but we did get some good sightings while on our boat cruise of a few individuals, both in the water and on land feeding. Our cruise was in the afternoon and the light was quite harsh, but I still happily varied between snapping photos, watching the scenery, and sipping on a few local beers.
Hippos are impressive in their bulk, and if you have the opportunity to see them open their jaws fully, you can truly appreciate why they are such a dangerous animal. While we can laugh about it now, it really wasn’t a funny situation when our boat stalled in 2013 and drifted dangerously close to a hippo pod. Thankfully our guide got it started and us to a safe distance before anything bad happened.
Here are a few hippo images from my day in Chobe in November, 2022.
2023-01-01: Violet backed starling
I was glad to start the new year working on my photography a bit, even if it was primarily behind the scenes, housekeeping type work, like finally finishing my first round of star rating my trip photos. When I came to the few photos I captured of the male violet backed starling, I smiled remembering how excited I was to finally have the opportunity to capture one of these birds in fairly decent light; that was enough to decide that this was the photo to edit if there was only going to be time to do one.
Our tour had a one-day trip into Chobe National Park in Botswana. It was a place I had visited on my first trip to Africa, and our group even had lunch at the same lodge I visited the first trip, so it really was a walk down memory lane. Being a different season, the experience was significantly different, but still very enjoyable. After border formalities and getting to the park, we were driving towards the river when our guide heard of some lions off of the main road about 20 minutes away. Our two guides chatted for a few minutes while slowly driving along, before making the choice to turn back to give people the chance to see some big cats. We spotted this starling just before making the decision to turn around, and it was only one of two that I saw on the trip (the other not offering any photo opportunities) so I am glad we carried on as far as we did before turning back for the lions.
2022-12-04: Returning after a long hiatus
It’s a challenge to get back into old routines when they’ve been allowed to slip away. This seems to be true for a variety of things, from health and fitness routines to participating in hobbies. The last post I shared was back in January, almost a full year ago. At that time, I needed to let photography and posting slide as I was trying to deal with my final semester of school (plus raising a new puppy and dealing with other life challenges). Once school ended in May, I thought I would be able to easily jump back in to doing all the things, but that wasn’t my reality. Instead, I eventually came to the realization that I was burnt out, and needed to give myself some time and space to add things back into my schedule.
At the start of November, I embarked on the first trip I’d taken since 2019. It was wonderful to have the opportunity to focus on things that I enjoy, and pick my camera up again. While I still have lots of different places I want to visit, heading back to Africa felt like the right thing to do. I wanted to be back amongst elephants.
It didn’t take long before creating images felt natural again, and I am hoping I will be able to find the same with editing in due course. I’ve played around with a few different types of software over the years, but have decided to try Capture One for cataloging and editing. Right now, it feels like a steep learning curve, however, I think returning to Lightroom would likely feel the same after being vacant from editing for almost a year.
I’m looking forward to working through my images and sharing some of the experiences I had on my trip over the next while. I’m hopeful I can get back into a routine of creating and posting.
2018-07-29: The Tamboti Leopard
Even spending a short time in the bush with a given animal, it is easy to get caught up in the drama of its life, and care how things turn out for it. Regardless how deeply I realize it is all part of nature and the circle of life, I still find myself feeling sad in hearing of the passing of an animal that I had a special sighting of.
I recently read on the Londolozi blog that the Tamboti female leopard has not been spotted in over a month, and is presumed dead. I had two sightings of her on my last trip; the first, we arrived to the riverbed moments after she stashed her cub into a new den site, missing what we thought would have been the sighting of a lifetime. We did catch a brief glimpse of her moving a cub into a deeper part of the bushes she stashed them in, and as we headed back to camp, I was happy to even have seen the briefest glimpse of a cub so tiny.
The next morning, our last on safari, after having an amazing moment with elephants we headed off on a whim back to the clump of bushes where she stashed the cubs. Our wonderful ranger Dave had an instinct that she might move the cubs again, and as we arrived, we found her with one of the cubs and were able to follow her on a long journey through the bush to her new den site, and then spend some time watching her interact with her two tiny cubs. I’ve posted about this sighting before, and you can see some other images here.
Reading that she is now presumed gone, and only her female cub remains, prompted me to edit a few more of my images to share, and to relive those wonderful moments in the bush, watching nature unfold.
2018-04-25: Wordless Wednesday
2018-04-23: Monochrome Monday
Such an amazing animal to spend time with on safari. The social dynamics of the wild dog packs are fascinating to watch, though if they are on the move, it is nearly impossible to keep up with them. This pack member looks on while some other members were starting to get up and ready themselves to set off.
2018-04-18: Wordless Wednesday
2018-04-10: WPC – Smile
The photo prompt of the week is smile; either an image of a smile, or something that makes you smile. Since baby animals are a universal crowd pleaser, here are a fewer images of youngsters that have made me smile.
I hope you enjoy!