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Kruger National Park 22nd September 2017

After a fantastic first day out in Kruger National Park on the 20th September we decided that we needed another full day out in the park to see if we could photograph some more of the stunning African wildlife. It was another early start to get to the park before the crowds arrived and see what could be seen in the early morning light. We entered the park again at the Malelane gate and headed off to travel around the Southern part of Kruger park. After looking for photos of the larger wildlife and the big 5 we asked our guide Obed if we could be on the look out for some more of the interesting bird life.

Some of the more colourful birds we saw included the Lilac Breasted Roller and White Fronted Bee-eater along with a couple of long legged wading birds like the Blacksmith Plover.

It was great to hear Obed say to us that he had heard another guide over the radio say that there were Lions that could be seen from S114. We headed there straight away and were amazed to see two large male Lions lying close together in the dried river bed. We managed to get great views from multiple locations which was a great sight.

After watching the Lions for a while to see if they would move........or do anything but lie still we headed off for breakfast at Afsaal. As per the first day we stopped at the Hyena den and were not disappointed as four animals were heading back to the den. Seeing the large dominant female and the younger animals definitely made up for seeing them sleeping of a large breakfast on the first day.

Sitting down to breakfast I saw people in two areas of the Afsaal rest area photographing something in the bushes and in the trees. I headed over with my camera and was pleased to find a Bushbuck happily feeding on some young shoots. After photographing the Bushbuck i headed over to where other people were gathered and saw Vervet Monkeys eating apples that people had left out for them. As i headed back to our picnic table i spotted a Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill in the sunshine and couldn't resist capturing the shape of the bill up close.

Obed said to us that he had been speaking to other guides over breakfast and had heard that a Leopard had been seen close by. We headed off towards where it was last spotted and ,as with the Lions, it was asleep under a tree.

Now i'm used to being in a traffic jam, having been on the M25, but i've never been caught in one that is caused by a Rhino. This one and another wandered along the track creating a great photo.

As with our previous drive we saw a number of birds of prey. The African Fish Eagles were hanging around the river looking for some lunch whilst the Martial Eagle we saw close to the track had already started its, in the form of a Duiker. We had seen Yellow billed Kites throughout the day but circliing high in the sky. As we approached a waterhole a Kite took off from a tree and headed in our direction and i managed to capture this great photo.

After another impressive day seeing a wide variety of animals and birds we headed for the Malelane gate to drive back to Kwa Madwala. On our way out of the gate we crossed the bridge and stopped to see a few crocodiles and also Pied Kingfishers.

Thank you to Obed our guide and driver for the day who not only managed to spot animals that I couldn't see even when we had stopped but had a fantastic sense of humour that made the day even more enjoyable.

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