Predators, flamingos and more great sightings

Here are some more stories from Elize Olivier‘s drives in Kruger.

Flamingos August 2012

“This was a rare sighting. I took these pictures of 2 Flamingos in the Olifants river near Balule camp. They look like Greater Flamingos to me. They were in the area for 3 days.”

Greater Flamingos are listed as Near Threatened in South Africa and as we understand, are not a common sight in Kruger.

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Leopard Kill – 17 September 2012

“How lucky can one be to start a morning like this ? Found this leopard with an impala kill one morning on my way to work, about 16km from Letaba on the H9. The leopard was ok with me taking pics and I was the only vehicle there. It was strange that the leopard didn’t take the impala into a tree but was eating it there on the ground.  When I passed again in the afternoon the impala was still on the ground but the leopard was gone, but had a nice meal. My favourite, cat wow!”

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“Something one doesn’t see so much anymore, Secretary Birds. Seen near Satara on 30 September 2012. Look at the beautiful bright orange!”

Lovely to see them in flight too! Secretary Birds are also listed as Near Threatened in South Africa. They forage for prey in open grassland and in Kruger their hunting territory is normally about 20 square kilometres. They are monogamous and build their nests on the tops of thorny trees.

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Kori Bustard 17 October 2010

“One doesn’t often see the Kori Bustard showing off.  I was lucky to get the male and female for +- 2 weeks near Rhidona dam. The male would show off in front of the female but she was not interested and ran off. Look at his feathers all puffed up. I think it’s beautiful.”

The Kori Bustard is the largest bustard and one of the world’s largest flying birds according to Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. Seeing them in display like this is a very special sighting.

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Boomslang 6 November 2012

“I took these pics near Rhidona dam on the H9 one afternoon on my way home from work. It’s a Juvenile boomslang. Have a look at the beautiful amber colour of the eyes. The Foam Frog was lucky to get away and the boomslang went into the bush. A rare sight because boomslangs don’t like to be on the ground and they are usually very shy.”

According to Wikipedia, the eyes of boomslangs are exceptionally large, and the head has a characteristic egg-like shape. Coloration is very variable. Males are light green with black or blue scale edges, but adult females may be brown.

Please Note: The bite from a boomslang is extremely venomous and can kill humans. If one is bitten, treatment must be sought immediately even if symptoms don’t show initially.

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Martial Eagle, 12 November 2012

Anton got these 3 beautiful pics of a Martial Eagle with a Monitor Lizard about 6 km from Letaba. Have a look at the golden-yellow eyes of the Martial Eagle, so beautiful and one of our favourite eagles.”

The Martial Eagle is one of Africa’s largest eagles, weighing an average of 4 kilograms with a wingspan of up to 2.4 metres. In eagles, the female is usually larger than the male. Martial Eagles are listed as Vulnerable in South Africa. Keep a lookout in the skies when you’re in Kruger as they spend most of their days soaring and are impressive to watch.

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To read more about Elize and her life in Kruger, click on one of the following


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