Peter Connan

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Everything posted by Peter Connan

  1. Savuti treated you well, with a magnificent leopard sighting. But definately it does seem to be more alive when the river is flowing. We were very lucky in 2012, with both elephant and wild dog right in camp. In fact, one night the elephant fed right above my brother in his little hiking tent!
  2. 191) Little Swift Kleinwindsael Apus affinis 11 November, Siyaya
  3. After reviewing my effort from last year, two things became glaringly obvious. Firstly, I don't travel enough, and am not observant enough to post a challenging total. But more worryingly, the standard of my bird photography has been declining. As a result, this year I have been trying to focus more on quality than on quantity. Thus, this year my total will be even lower than last year. Only problem is, I am not entirely sure how to define quality. I geuss mainly my intention is not to post any EBC-type shots, but if I happen across a sufficiently rare bird, I may just break that resolution. Birds will be posted in approximate order of first spotting, but if I already have a better photo from later in the year, I will post that instead, and if I onbly have a bad photo, I may hold back on that bird, and post it later. Thus, this thread will not be in cronologial order, but I will leave the EXIF in place for verification of time and date. Anyway, enough waffling, let's get started. 1) Ant-eating Chat Swartpiek Myrmecocichla formicivora Rietvlei Nature Reserve, 14 January Wolfsnes, Etosha, 13 April
  4. You got a Klaas! Well done! And you managed to get nice and close to the Kingfisher too!
  5. Stunning captures of the woodpecker and the owl, and just three to go to get to 350!
  6. @Geoff, you nailed it! @Elsa Hoffmann, that is indeed uncommon and very well photographed to boot!
  7. I (the king of procrastination) personally tend to leave things to "the very last minute". Typically, the industry I work in closes down over December, but one is never quite sure of the dates more than a few months before the time, and this makes planning rather difficult. A large part of the problem is that my wife doesn't handle heat very well, and in southern Africa, heat in December is pretty much a given. Furthermore, I just can't get my head around planning two hoildays at the same time. One has to be finished before the dreaming for the next one starts. The result is that I tend to plan no more than about 9 months in advance. However, I have managed to "break out of the cycle", at least temporarily, with a trip to Namibia coming up shortly. However, the other day a friend of mine dropped a bomb on me by sending me an invitation to what looked like a fabulous trip. Unfortunately, it fell on almost exactly the same dates as my Namibian trip, and I had to decline. Since he also already had a trip planned for the same dates, he just went ahead and organised a similar trip for 2018, and then re-invited me. I just couldn't say no again, so I started begging my wife. She, to my surprise, said yes within the hour. So then I bragged to my friend @@xelas, and the next moment he almost begged to be allowed to come along. So here's what the three of us are doing in March next year (copied from the brochure): " Please have a look at map… our Goals are as follow: A – Starting the EXPEDITION in Mahalapye at 12h00, our first goal will be to track and follow the Route used by the old Explorers like David Livingstone to navigate the pans to the Zambezi. B – To do the almost 200km of the 19:20 cutline named line X. C – After the Selinda Track (Linking Moremi with Seronga), we will explore a new cut line on the border with the Caprivi in extreme Northern area of Botswana. (Rated to have the toughest sand roads in Botswana) D – From our Old Camp “Nuka” on the “Corni” cut line to travel to Gcwihaba Hills, the home of Drostky’s Cave – The World of the lost city of the Kalahari. " This is primarily a 4x4 expedition, rather than a traditional game-viewing safari, and it breaks with my normal holiday habits in several important ways: 1) This is a guided trip. I have never used a guide before. 2) It looks as if we will be driving pretty much every day. I tend to prefer staying at least two days in any one area. 3) The trip is partially catered. Normally, we self-cater all the way along. 4) There will in almost all cases be no facilities whatsoever at the campsites, which will almost all be informal. What makes it a little more challenging is that no trailers are allowed, nor "complicated tents" (I am currently unsure what that means). On the other hand, it promises plenty of time for five of my favorite pastimes, spending time with my wife, spending time with good friends (there will be 10 vehicles excluding the guide, almost all guys who I have travelled and camped with before), 4x4ing, photography and exploring new areas. And since we will be travelling through a number of areas where tourists seldom go, the "exploring" might be much closer to an absolute truth than is normally the case (although the areas will obviously never be completely new and un-travelled), and conjures up visions of mile upon mile of twisty little two-spoor. As you can no doubt tell, I am immencely excited about this trip!
  8. Thanks @xelas. He was collecting mud for nest-building, and the larger of the two is a piece of that mud. I am nort sure of the other bit, but suspect it's the same.
  9. So am I!
  10. 190) Greater Striped Swallow Grootstreepswael Hirundo cucullata 11 November, Siyaya
  11. 189) Lesser Striped Swallow Kleinstreepswael Hirundo abyssinica 11 November, Siyaya
  12. 188) Magpie Shrike Langstertlaksman Corvinella melanoleuca 11 November, Siyaya Bush Lodge
  13. Lovely. Especially the roller!
  14. Back to our weekend at Siyaya Lodge in Dinokeng: 187) Red-billed Hornbill Rooibekneushoringvoel Tockus erythrorhynchus 12 November
  15. One I missed from earlier: 186) Bronze Mannikin Gewone Fret Lonchura cucullata 4 November, Rooihuiskraal (in a friend's garden)
  16. Eish indeed! Jip, Bataleur it is.
  17. My opinion ( as a professionally opinionated person): the moment you use anything more technically advanced than two sticks or two rocks, you are cheating. After that, we are just talking degrees. Personally, I use parrafin. Fantastic photography and wonderful sightings of little ones!
  18. Yes, thanks @xelas Everything from now untill further notice will be D3.
  19. The head-on :esser Striped swallow is a fantastic photo.
  20. Opportunism at it's very best!
  21. Happy birthday, and I hope (but am also sure) that you have a wonderful time! I do hope you manage to read this on the way: please don't expect too much with the night sky shots, as the milky way's core (the bright parts) are currently under the horizon, somewhat like the sun in northern Norway, it is only visible for half the year, in this case, the colder half. However, all is not lost, as you will still be able to get good star trails. I look forward to reading about the adventure!
  22. 185) African Jacana Grootlangtoon Actophilornis africanus 11 November, Siyaya Lodge, Dinokeng
  23. YES, thank you. Beautiful photos!
  24. Thanks @Elsa Hoffmann

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