Tuesday, December 14

Kruger meanders - the eastern plains

The "chinese lantern" flowers of the Sickle Bush
Day 3 cont.. (click here to go back to the first part of Day 3)  

After breakfast at Olifants Camp I headed south again - along the eastern side of the central plains.

Lonely roads, miles of nothing, but with a few great sightings....


A few more of the beautiful flowers that appear during the summer.

Marsh Lily "Crinum"

Four different types of vulture on this small carcase (a steenbok I thought). The very large Lappet-faced vulture is using it's wings aggressively to get a space in amongst the White-backed vultures. The vulture with the bluish head and pale eye on the left is a Cape Vulture - normally found in the mountains & this was my first sighting of one in Kruger. The smaller vulture with thin beak in the foreground is the Hooded Vulture, not getting much of a look in with all the larger birds around!

 A Kori Bustard keeping the zebra and wildebeest company.
The open savannah around Satara is a good place to look for these birds - the heaviest bird that can fly!

Purple Roller
Blue Wildebeest

The Leopard Tortoise like most of our reptiles disappears from view for the winter, and within hours of the first rain falling they suddenly are everywhere. This was quite a little fella - they can grow up to about 20kg, not that I have ever seen one that big!

A cool oasis marks the end of the open plains

African Rock Python
This was an exciting find! Only about 2 meters long, but so close to the road. I obviously interrupted it's planned crossing and once 2 more vehicles stopped to look, it whipped around and disappeared into the bushes. We don't see snakes very often and this was only the third python I have seen in 3 years in Kruger. Isn't it beautiful?

Violet-backed Starling
This little bird is in his breeding plumage. 
I don't see them often and they are usually difficult to photograph. 
This one was very obliging.

Sunset at Satara Camp

And a very welcome sight at the end of a very very long day..........

Click here to continue to Day 4

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