Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Lions, Hyenas and Jackals, oh my!

I have too many pictures of amazing animals (such a bad position to be in, right?!). I will have to do a few Madikwe posts. Here is the first!

Over Easter weekend, only four days after my parents arrived in South Africa, we drove four hours northwest towards Gabarone, Botswana. Just before reaching the border we turned into the Madikwe Game Reserve, the fifth largest game reserve in South Africa. Driving the short distance from the gate to the lodge I could already tell this was going to be an awesome weekend as we came across a group of Kudu near the road.

The Lodge we stayed at was fantastic! An old farmhouse turned guest lodge with only six rooms, a beautiful setting overlooking a watering hole, with an underground hide putting us up close and personal with any animals in for a drink.

Upon arrival we were whisked off for the evening game drive and started marking off our Big 5 sight seeing list (Lion, Elephant, Rhino, Buffalo and Leopard).

With LION!

We literally almost drove over this guy. He was lying in the long grass and our ranger was driving looking for him and suddenly about 5 feet from my spot in the open safari vehicle he lifted his head. He looked directly at me, but I wasn't ready with my camera yet, oh well. He gave a good pose from behind!

This was the beautiful view for every game drive. I love sitting in those open vehicles out in the middle of nowhere looking for animals that can eat me! Makes me very happy! Also a cute little dung beetle doing what he does best.

The following morning we were up at 5:30am for a sunrise game drive. These ladies had a big dinner of wildebeest the night before and were doing what cats do best, relaxing. The left overs from dinner were now being enjoyed by a friendly hyena and pack of jackals!

So amazing to watch the interactions between the animals. The jackals trying to steal the food from the hyena, the hyena cracking through the bones of the wildebeest all just happening about 10 feet from where we sat in the vehicle.

We've been on many safari's in our years in Africa, but it never gets old!

Sorry about the graphic pictures, but this is nature at it's best - predators eating vegetarians (of which I am one, but I'd make a bad meal, not much meat on my bones)!

More pictures coming soon! 

If you want to see the entire collection of Madikwe safari pictures visit my smugmug gallery here! (beware there is 169 photos in there!)

1 comment:

Marie said...

So appetizing. ;) Also AWESOME photos!