Bush dog

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Bush dog last won the day on May 6

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  1. Another “frightening story” Fifteen years ago, I was in the private reserve of Welgevonden in South Africa. During a game drive, we came across a female white rhino and its calf. At first everything went well, they seemed to have accepted us. Our vehicle was a traditional safari vehicle with no roof and no doors. I was sitting in front, next to the driver-guide. After a while, the mother positioned itself, not really facing the vehicle but at eleven o'clock, and charged. Afterwards, I realized that clearly the goal was not to touch the vehicle, but at the time, I was very far from understanding it. The first charge surprised me and I saw the horn pass very close to my left arm. The rhino continued its way by forming a loop to find itself at its starting point and charged again. This time, I had not waited for it to again hug the vehicle to move as far as possible to the right of my seat. The animal charged again several times before joining its calf which, on the side, had witnessed the whole scene without moving. Throughout the multiple charges, the guide remained standing on his seat, screaming and hitting the vehicle's hood with a blanket to try to scare the animal.
  2. More than twenty years ago, I was, in Selous, at Mbuyuni Camp, the ancestor of the present Siwandu, who was, at the time, along the Rufiji. Here we went on an excursion on the river and watching the birds in the reeds, when suddenly, a few meters from the boat, leaping out of the water, with great splashing, a furious hippo starts to charge the boat. The guide instantly realized that it was not a mock charge and straight away stepped on the gas all the way. Nevertheless, the hippo began to pursue the boat in a continuous and alternate succession of leaps and dives, a little like a butterfly swimmer. It was really scary, you could read in its eyes and on its face all the rage that lived in it. What was also impressive was the speed at which this mass of more than a ton and a half moved despite the resistance of the water. After that, I vowed never to go on the water on an embarkation without a powerful engine.
  3. @optig Stephen Banda, was it at Tafika?
  4. This is a very sad news, indeed! Here is a picture of Xanda taken in March 2016
  5. Whether or not you are scared depends heavily on your level of safari experience. On my first safaris when a big cat was walking or sitting alongside the vehicle or a young elephant was showing off close to it, I must admit it was sending me a shiver down the spine. Now, this kind of situation leaves me cold. Most of the more or less “frightening” experiences, I had, were between 1996 and 2006. I only remember one, after that period. It was at Lebala, the vehicle was several times, without warning, really charged, matriarch at the head and trumpeting, by the same herd of elephants which was probably originating from a hunting concession. I still hear Spencer exclaiming "wow, the crazy herd, let's get out of it". The mock charges, whether coming from elephants, hippos or big cats, undergone by the vehicles in which I was, at the beginning were also destabilizing, especially those of big cats. The vehicle I was in was twice charged by a leopard and once by a male lion that did not tolerate voyeurs during its lovemaking. It is well to know that these are mock charges, they are nonetheless frightening by the expression and the terrifying grimaces of anger displayed by the face of the feline, that make think that a rabid demon is swooping on you at great speed. But on some occasions, I was really frightened. To be continued…
  6. We began the afternoon, on the concession, with a few elephants at the edge of the teaks. And always more birds at Shumba pan : A flight of white-faced whistling ducks. One of the frog eaters flying to the water for laundry. A grey heron in flight. And an angry blacksmith plover chasing an intruder to protect its nest. One more elephant. And another profitable night drive : Perhaps a fiery-necked nightjar. And a serval, hunting.
  7. @xelas Thanks a lot for you very kind words and for following this TR. Concerning the LBR picture, when we spotted the kill, the bird was about to swallow the frog. We were on the wrong side of light. So, to be sure to get a picture as much as the frog was still visible, I decided to quickly take a few shots, without having time to check the settings. Then, we moved to be on the right side of light. It was too late, the frog was already in the bird's stomach. I knew that there would be great chances that the pictures would be underexposed and they were. When processing the images, for the first picture, I pushed the underexposition until the subject appears in shadow play. For the second picture, I did the opposite.
  8. @Kitsafari @Marks Thank you so much for your valuations.
  9. @offshorebirder Thank you for your comments. In fact, it was a quatuor of coursers. The last one was out of frame. Well, it's not too difficult to be lucky with birds if your guide knows that they are interesting you. As for the marsh owl, I must admit that, in this case, I was very lucky when you know that even guides do not see them often.
  10. Some more birds seen in the morning : Capped wheatear. Red-billed teal. Grassveld pipit. Around the Shumba picnic site : Tropical boubou. Crested barbet.
  11. Well, @Game Warden, super timing perhaps but now that taking pictures became, with digital, more shooting than photographing, be successful with this one is easier than in the past. Anyway, thanks a lot for your comment.
  12. The next morning, we had, still on the concession, our second sighting of the small group of sables. Some birds seen in the morning : Lilac-breasted roller. African golden oriole. Black-shouldered kite.
  13. @Peter Connan Thanks, Peter, and also for following this report.
  14. Goliath heron juvenile at Mandavu. African harrier-hawk (gymnogene). Birds seen in the afternoon : A couple of Coqui francolins. The frog hunters, always present at the appointment of late afternoon at Shumba. Three-banded coursers.
  15. Hi Geoff, I totally agree with you on that.

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