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Monday, August 28, 2017

Third Game Drive Weekend 5.0

Sunrise on the Mara

Finally, our biggest thrill.  A cheetah kill!!  We had started tracking this cheetah when it was probably 400 yards out through the binoculars.  We slowing started driving closer as it walked, sat, pondered life.  Then, when we were no more than 50 yards away its slow rambling instantly turned into a 60mph run.  She zig-zagged for no more than 50 yards and 4 seconds and she caught a dyk dyk.  A small rabbit sized antelope.

We could only watch as we fumbled for our cameras.  As we got closer, she continue to walk, with the dyk dyk struggling for another 30 seconds then limp.  She continued to walk to find something to 'hide' behind for her mid-morning snack.  What a treat to see this animal in action.  Our gain, the dyk dyk's loss.

Our farewell lunch on the Mara

Third Game Drive Weekend 4.0

Now, on to more lions.  Another nice grouping, but their belly's were full and they were sleeping in the brush.

And this gigantic male giraffe.  He was about 10 feet from us, eating.  We did notice this huge, deep injury on his back.  He must have got a way from the lion.  One could easily stand underneath this giraffe's belly!



These crocsodileswere easily 15-20 feet long.  Enormous!

Finally, we loved these birds on the water buffaloes.  They either sat on their backs for the view and ride, or they were busy eating bugs from the water buffalo's ears and noses.  Very annoying....but appreciated.  

Third Game Drive Weekend 3.0

This may have been our best viewing.  A leopard. Which, by the way completes our seeing the African Big Five.  They are elephant, water buffalo, lion, hippo, and leopard.

We had heard there was a leopard sighting, so we and many other vans and jeeps headed over to this grouping of trees and shrubbery hoping for a glance.  We were only there about 5 minutes when the leopard popped our right in front of us!!  We had front row seats.

Now you can see what leopard's spots do, he is right in the middle of the photo.
Now, so you can catch your breath, more bird pictures......

Not sure what this bird is, it looks like a cross between a duck and a hammer.

African Pea-Hen

This bird is lilac-breasted roller ,Kenya's National Bird.


Third Game Drive Weekend 2.0

As promised, one more elephant picture.  We stumbled on this family both Saturday and Sunday.  All sizes, fun to watch them walk and eat, which they do constantly.

We did watch another 'migration'.  Learned a bit more about it as well.  The migration is north-to-south.  Kenya to Tanzania, but the fording of the river we saw on Saturday was the opposite direction as the fording we saw a couple of weeks ago!   So, go figure.  We were told that wildebeests aren't too bright.....

The zebras got sidetracked below, couldn't get out and went back.

Vans and jeeps need to leave an opening for all the wildebeests and zebras to exit.

Heading out again, except not south.......

Third Game Drive Weekend

William, clinic director and game drive driver, hit it out of the park Saturday.  Lions and Leopards and Cheetah, oh my.........

First, though, a few pictures of  'non-predators'

Mongooses, (Mongeese?)  'flow' into the area behind the clinic, just about every night to check out the trash pile.  'Flow' meaning, about 20-30 come in all together, bounce around a bit, then 'flow' out again, like a flying carpet.

We ran into the Black Rhino again,  still just trudging along.  He is always surrounded by vans, doesn't seem to bother him.
A few things:  This is a typical view of a zebra.  They are always moving away from us. Also, notice there are strips on their tails, finally, either most of the zebras are pregnant, or there is more food on the Mara then we realize.

These bad-boys were always hanging out with the vultures after the carnivore kills.  Storks of some sort.  Also very noisy, and BIG, (probably 3 feet tall)!

More on elephants in the next post, but we'll end with this baby elephant 'practicing' moving his ears back and forth.  Reminded us of Dumbo!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Second Game Drive Weekend 2.0

Continuing with the lion feasting on the wildebeest.

Just to show you that zoom lenses weren't necessary, he was surrounded by safari vans.

Second Game Drive Weekend 4.0

So many pictures, so many new things.  We all commented, as I may have stated before, that you look out on the Mara, there are literally thousands of animals grazing.  Water buffalo, wildebeests, impalas, gazelles, hyenas, zebras, tokis, etc, etc.  Herds and herds, as far as the eye can see.  Amazing.

Warhogs walk on all fours, but eat on their knees.  Weird and shy.


Lunch is always under a shade tree.