Saturday, 4 February 2012

Berg en Dal Day2

Day 2 in the beautiful Berg en Dal Camp dawned and we were excited to be on the road again. The first thing we saw was the hyenas from the previous night. They were still in the exact same spot we left them. They seemed relaxed and we got a good view of them in the early morning light.

Hyenas live in clans dominated by the larger, more aggressive females. Each clan defends a territory of about 130 square km.
We also came across some Rhino's...again. Berg en Dal seem to be teeming with them. Probably because the first rhino's that was introduced to the Kruger Park was in this area.
A very large herd of Cape Water Buffalo in a riverbed was next on our sightings list.  The movements of a herd of buffalo are determined by specific individuals known as pathfinders. These are not necessarily dominant animals but they simply act as leaders to the herd. Each sub-herd within the major herd also has a pathfinder which will lead its members when the herd splits up.

I tried to take a couple of pictures of this Lilac Breasted Rolar. In the first shot was not quite centred enough so the bird decided to help me out a little... :)
We then played a little hide and seek with a Kudu Cow and her young son. Its little horns only just starting to form.

More young animals came in the form of a Chacma Baboon. For the first 5 weeks of their lives, the babies cling to the mother's belly where they have an on-tap supply of milk and can be transported safely whenever danger threatens. At 5 weeks old, the babies can walk and at this stage they begin to ride jockey on their mother's backs using the kinked tail as a backrest.

Three male lions were lying under a tree. They spent the whole morning feasting on a buffalo, and now as the sun started to become a little hot they were relaxing in the shade of a nearby tree. They were pretty far away but we managed one or to pictures.

Our final sighting for the morning drive was a beautiful 'steenbokkie' who stood still just long enough for us to get a good picture.

Steenbok are solitary antelope except for females accompanied by a lamb or a courting male. They are very shy and quite nervous, witch makes taking pictures of these brick coloured antelope very difficult.

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