A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about grant's gazelle

Ndutu III: migration, dung beetles, hyena, heron with snake

In the midst of the action


View Baby Boomers - Tanzania 2020 on Grete Howard's travel map.

After breakfast we continue on our quest to see the wildebeest migration and maybe even a female giving birth.

The first thing we come across, is a less-than-a-day-old baby suckling his mum.

large_a3159e00-6f93-11ea-bcfe-9947a99cfe88.jpg

Large herds of wildebeests attract a number of followers as they cut across the savannah, in the form of flies, which again entice birds, in this case Cattle Egrets, who ride along, hoping for a tasty snack.

large_a2a9a490-713a-11ea-97b4-778cd81073d0.jpg

large_acc20620-713a-11ea-97b4-778cd81073d0.jpg

large_bd0cb570-713a-11ea-97b4-778cd81073d0.jpg

Marabou Stork

large_4946bad0-713c-11ea-830b-5f11f15ace87.jpg

large_541ec2e0-713c-11ea-830b-5f11f15ace87.jpg

large_5dd02540-713c-11ea-830b-5f11f15ace87.jpg

Grant's Gazelles

large_db0fe590-713c-11ea-830b-5f11f15ace87.jpg

large_e540d830-713c-11ea-830b-5f11f15ace87.jpg

Thomson's Gazelle

The difference between Grant's and Thomson's (affectionately known as Tommies), is not just that the latter is much small (which of course isn't easy to see in a photograph), but also the shape of the horns, and the dark stripe along the side.

large_d1b4eb20-713d-11ea-915c-772c023c013d.jpg

Here you can see them together – Grant's in the front with the paler body and the curved horns, and Thomson's at the back: smaller with a distinctive dark stripe.

large_da17d480-713d-11ea-915c-772c023c013d.jpg

Dung Beetles

Hundreds of thousands of wildebeest in one place naturally produces a lot of waste, with the waste again attracting dung beetles. Lots of them. Malisa knows what a fascination I have with these cool little recyclers, and stops for me to take some photos as they roll away their prized balls of shit.

large_a49e3da0-71b3-11ea-bc9d-a35e5c8a41df.jpg

So, why do they do it?
While there are different types of dung beetles, these little critters we see here, start by converging on a fresh pile of dung and rolling it into a ball. Sometimes you see several beetles on a pile of dung, and they can transform a huge mount of manure into perfect balls in minutes.

large_b576d510-71b3-11ea-bc9d-a35e5c8a41df.jpg

large_146f1e60-71b4-11ea-bc9d-a35e5c8a41df.jpg

Usually it is the male doing most of the rolling – they can roll up to 50 times their own weight – with the female simply hitching a ride.

large_454679c0-71b4-11ea-bc9d-a35e5c8a41df.jpg

Things don't always go to plan.

large_5e0d8de0-71b4-11ea-a158-ed76b960c661.jpg

When a spot with soft soil is found, they stop and bury the ball.

large_9805cb70-71b4-11ea-bc9d-a35e5c8a41df.jpg

After mating under ground, the female lays eggs inside the dung. Once the new brood has hatched, they eat their way out of the ball, thus the dung doubles up as housing as well as food.

large_f0da6d00-71b4-11ea-bc9d-a35e5c8a41df.jpg

By burying and consuming dung, they improve nutrient recycling and soil structure; as well as the dispersal of seeds found in the animal waste. Additionally, by removing the manure, they decrease the number of flies that would otherwise be attracted to the wildebeest.

I just love these little animals!

Hyena

A pregnant hyena eyes up a zebra.

large_13765e20-71c2-11ea-9251-6b07ae3a01b9.jpg

While they are known to be opportunist predators, hyenas generally go after abandoned kills. In this case, our female is looking for placentas left on the ground after animals have given birth.

large_26b1c4c0-71c2-11ea-9251-6b07ae3a01b9.jpg

The zebra nearest us is limping badly, and we momentarily get quite concerned for safety, but either the hyena doesn't notice, or she has not got the energy in her at her current state to pursue a potential prey. There is less chance of losing her baby by foraging for leftovers than chasing a large animal.

large_38275f80-71c2-11ea-9251-6b07ae3a01b9.jpg

Marabou Stork

Meanwhile, a Marabou Stork circles above. They too are carrion eaters, so probably looking for placentas too.

large_620a7cb0-71c2-11ea-9251-6b07ae3a01b9.jpg

large_6c1c4e90-71c2-11ea-9251-6b07ae3a01b9.jpg

large_766cd720-71c2-11ea-9251-6b07ae3a01b9.jpg

And an Abdim Stork

large_137f6530-71ca-11ea-b7d8-c97fa34c19c1.jpg

Kori Bustard

Judging by his flamboyant courtship display, this guy doesn't have food on his mind, he is looking to attract a female.

large_5f9531c0-71d4-11ea-bfe5-996b5defd917.jpg

large_692af5d0-71d4-11ea-bfe5-996b5defd917.jpg

Zebra with Young

large_5e53a9b0-71d7-11ea-be99-3b34b88f177d.jpg

large_1bdf1b30-7283-11ea-9393-d134bfa5035b.jpg

large_683543d0-71d7-11ea-be99-3b34b88f177d.jpg

large_723b55e0-71d7-11ea-be99-3b34b88f177d.jpg

large_d3b8a5b0-7282-11ea-9393-d134bfa5035b.jpg

large_fcfc5e80-7296-11ea-b200-636b7acc5977.jpg

This guy seems to have a lot of passengers.

large_524a7f30-71d8-11ea-8303-3359b6ba0a50.jpg

large_e7ebd4a0-7294-11ea-8234-c3133a5d895d.jpg

large_f04f87c0-71d8-11ea-8303-3359b6ba0a50.jpg
Wattled Starlinsg

Black Headed Heron

large_11453fb0-72a6-11ea-9d3a-b1327eb44f65.jpg

Far in the distance we see him stalking something on the ground, then dip down and reappear with a snake in his beak!

large_93d22570-72c8-11ea-bafa-9197cc67e87d.jpg

For the next ten minutes we watch the battle of wits between the still-live snake and the hungry bird.

large_a082be10-72c8-11ea-bafa-9197cc67e87d.jpg

large_ab07eb30-72c8-11ea-bafa-9197cc67e87d.jpg

It is a tough flight. The snake keeps trying to slither out of the heron's mouth but obviously the heron gets the better of it.

large_b782f4e0-72c8-11ea-bafa-9197cc67e87d.jpg

While trying to re-arrange the snake within his beak, he drops it at one stage, but is very quick at picking it up again.

large_c6954b40-72c8-11ea-bafa-9197cc67e87d.jpg

large_d2c960e0-72c8-11ea-bafa-9197cc67e87d.jpg

We are fascinated by the spectacle unfolding before us - this surely has to be today's highlight!

Knob Billed Duck

As we are watching the heron, Malisa calls out to alert us to a Knob Billed Duck flying overhead. I grab my other camera (I have been using Big Bertha for the heron, but find that too heavy and cumbersome for birds in flight), but by the time I get myself sorted, it has almost passed us over.

large_4f51b0b0-72cc-11ea-a728-8b721afb0176.jpg

Wildebeests

As we continue our journey across the flat meadows near Ndutu, we find ourselves surrounded on all sides by wildebeest. There are literally thousands of them, everywhere we look, as far as we can see into the distance.

large_0e677780-72cf-11ea-b6c6-9b84c15e3d22.jpg

large_aff383f0-72cf-11ea-b6c6-9b84c15e3d22.jpg

Today's challenge is to find a wildebeest – or zebra – just about to give birth so that we can witness the beginning of a new life. It seems, however, that we are too early for the wildebeest, and too late for the zebra.

large_06f58860-72d0-11ea-b6c6-9b84c15e3d22.jpg

large_a144b4e0-72d0-11ea-8aa6-0d3c88dd496f.jpg

large_55616000-7334-11ea-bccb-c7b093321f2c.jpg

Zebra Dust Bath

large_ea73f1f0-734b-11ea-ac9a-c9f10765025d.jpg

large_f48e7660-734b-11ea-ac9a-c9f10765025d.jpg

large_fe2720a0-734b-11ea-ac9a-c9f10765025d.jpg

Zebra on Heat

Someone ought to tell this female zebra on heat that mounting another female zebra is not going to satisfy her sexual urges, nor is it going to produce baby zebra.

large_216b96b0-736d-11ea-9229-ed43b7960dac.jpg

large_2bd7e4a0-736d-11ea-9229-ed43b7960dac.jpg

“Stop it! You're scaring the children!”

large_3bfa4b70-736d-11ea-9229-ed43b7960dac.jpg

The other female is obviously not in the mood for lesbian love, and kicks out before making her escape.

large_5fd67b30-736e-11ea-9229-ed43b7960dac.jpg

Car stuck in the Mud

In the distance we see a car at an odd angle; obviously unable to get out of a bit of a hole, quite literally.

large_03907b60-7444-11ea-a5da-811003e457a7.jpg

The ground is so deceptive here: the savannah looks its normal grassy self on the surface, yet – in some place – as soon as you drive on it, it is all boggy underneath.

large_2c3a7c50-7444-11ea-a5da-811003e457a7.jpg

There are already other people helping the female driver of the grounded vehicle. A few years ago there were no female drivers here in th Northern Circuit, but that is slowly changing as the lodges prepare accommodation to support both genders. On this trip we see two lady drivers.

large_3c495b20-7444-11ea-a5da-811003e457a7.jpg

It rather concerns me seeing the vultures circle above – what do they know that we don't? The presence of a number of wildebeest, however, indicates that we are reasonably safe from predators.

large_4596f2a0-7444-11ea-a5da-811003e457a7.jpg

At the beginning of this trip, Malisa mentioned about making sure he had a couple of tow ropes in the car, now I am beginning to understand why, as a rope is attached to the stuck car, with another vehicle ready to pull them out. They are travelling together in a group of three cars, with the passengers being a bunch of very friendly Americans.

large_d3ba1fd0-7444-11ea-a5da-811003e457a7.jpg

The lead car goes full whack in top speed and makes it all look very easy. One of the passengers, however, makes the mistake of standing up in the vehicle as they are being pulled out, and ends up completely airborne. I am pretty sure she must have hit her head on the roof – that's gotta have hurt!

large_3a341a40-7445-11ea-a5da-811003e457a7.jpg

Malisa tells us to hold on for dear life as he drives across the boggy area at full speed too, creating some serious bounce, resulting in painful jarring of my back. We stop the other side of the bog to make sure all the vehicles get across. The atmosphere here is like that of a party, with everyone treating it as an adventure. There is lots of clapping and cheering going on.

large_66fc7d10-7445-11ea-a5da-811003e457a7.jpg
There's an enormous amount of surface water about!

Hyenas

We see four hyenas scattered in different places, in amongst the zebra. Neither species seem that bothered by the other.

large_fae20d00-74e6-11ea-816d-0b9785ac7c7f.jpg

large_04a94150-74e7-11ea-816d-0b9785ac7c7f.jpg

large_1d6c84e0-74e7-11ea-816d-0b9785ac7c7f.jpg

large_2753eb60-74e7-11ea-816d-0b9785ac7c7f.jpg

As we move to get closer, we almost run over this fifth one in a den.

large_91ecbce0-74e7-11ea-816d-0b9785ac7c7f.jpg

Eland

A small herd of eland appear on the horizon. Traditionally hunted for their delicious meat, these large antelopes are usually very skittish.

large_590afb90-74eb-11ea-af69-89fbc49afa3d.jpg

large_62de3dd0-74eb-11ea-af69-89fbc49afa3d.jpg

For that reason there is no point in trying to get any closer to get a better shot, so I grab Big Bertha instead (my 600mm lens). Because of how far away these critters are, there is a lot of atmospheric distortion in the air, making the images quite soft.

large_7ce35030-74eb-11ea-af69-89fbc49afa3d.jpg

large_7209c180-74eb-11ea-af69-89fbc49afa3d.jpg

large_db84ed30-751b-11ea-b9fc-2be10e837c16.jpg
Abdim Stork

Pee break

Unlike the Serengeti where there are a number of organised picnic areas with modern toilets, here at Ndutu it's au naturel. You'd think that after all these years I would have learned to face into the wind when 'marking my territory', especially on a gusty day like today. Not a chance. The only casualty is my knickers, my jeans remain unscathed, and thankfully there are no other tourist vehicles around as I take them off. The wildebeest don't seem to mind.

You - and I - will be pleased to know there are no pictures.

Thomson's Gazelle

A mother and her ten day old baby.

large_effc31f0-7599-11ea-80de-79329e39fdc6.jpg

large_e2f9cfd0-7599-11ea-80de-79329e39fdc6.jpg

large_d590bca0-7599-11ea-80de-79329e39fdc6.jpg

We race across the savanna – not because we're in a hurry, but in order to prevent ourselves getting bogged down in the marshes - to reach a tree which will provide shade for our picnic lunch.

More to follow in the next blog entry. Thanks to Calabash Adventures for arranging this safari for us.

large_66b40a70-759a-11ea-80de-79329e39fdc6.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 06:42 Archived in Tanzania Tagged animals birds wildlife mud safari tanzania zebra birding duck hyena heron egret stork starling wildebeest kori_bustard bird_watching bustard wild_animals eland ndutu dung_beetle calabash_adventures marabou_stork grant's_gazelle game_viewing thomson's_gazelle wildlife_photography wild_birds abdim_stork stuck_in_mud baby_animal wildebeest_baby heron_with_snake knob_billed_duck dust_bath zebra_on_heat car_stuck pee_break Comments (2)

Serengeti V: mongoose, baboons, klipspringers, gazelles

North to Lobo. Or maybe not.


View Baby Boomers - Tanzania 2020 on Grete Howard's travel map.

Breakfast Picnic

We are unable to get into the actual picnic site as the ground is too sodden and muddy, so we set up our table and chairs on the side of the road instead. We are the only people here, so it doesn't really matter.

large_370e0550-6492-11ea-8e52-2f21eabec4f3.jpg

New for this year, are the posh chairs, with little foldable tables attached, complete with cup holder.

large_5558d7b0-6492-11ea-8e52-2f21eabec4f3.jpg
Another great breakfast provided by Matawi Serengeti Camp

large_7e28a8c0-6495-11ea-abcd-054068aabb8a.jpg
What a great idea to have a shape cut out to include the cup handle.

We may be the only humans here, but a couple of lions have walked right through the site this morning.

large_d47ba880-6495-11ea-abcd-054068aabb8a.jpg

On the other side of our table are fresh hyena prints. We are definitely out in the wild here.

large_1af6ecc0-649b-11ea-9229-0f59c6b27c83.jpg

Butterflies

We have seen more butterflies on this trip than any other safari in the past, with some places featuring literally hundreds of them. They are very difficult to photograph as they rarely hang around for very long, although I managed to catch this one as it landed for a few seconds.

large_c42718b0-6496-11ea-abcd-054068aabb8a.jpg
Tiger Butterfly

Swallows

Swallows dart around, pausing briefly to pick up crumbs left on the ground.

large_728db720-649b-11ea-9229-0f59c6b27c83.jpg
Lesser Striped Swallow

large_8073c280-649b-11ea-9229-0f59c6b27c83.jpg
White Rumped Swift

In the distance we see a car being helped out of the mud by several other drivers.

large_b0ef4240-649b-11ea-9229-0f59c6b27c83.jpg

Martial Eagle

This huge eagle is easily recognisable by its relatively short tail. Such a powerful bird, it has been known to just fly down and pick up baby antelopes. Farmers fear it as it will attack livestock, which in turn makes it one of the most persecuted eagle in Africa. It is classed as 'vulnerable', heading towards extinction as a result.

large_adc65c90-649e-11ea-b567-c1ce3820e3a9.jpg

large_b7194b40-649e-11ea-b567-c1ce3820e3a9.jpg
Here you can better see the short tail without the confusion of the branch behind

Marabou Stork

large_0c53d950-64a3-11ea-92c1-19aac3b90381.jpg

These really are such ugly birds.

large_303d44f0-64a3-11ea-92c1-19aac3b90381.jpg

Nile Crocodile

large_ecf334b0-64a3-11ea-92c1-19aac3b90381.jpg

Hippos

large_0e163ed0-651c-11ea-9932-7b147b15f198.jpg

large_72165fa0-651c-11ea-9932-7b147b15f198.jpg

Dwarf Mongoose

large_38de0f50-651f-11ea-82e4-091e58b0f441.jpg

large_42875b60-651f-11ea-82e4-091e58b0f441.jpg

large_5f050ee0-651f-11ea-82e4-091e58b0f441.jpg

large_6a00cb90-651f-11ea-82e4-091e58b0f441.jpg

large_73ebdb90-651f-11ea-82e4-091e58b0f441.jpg

Lilac Breasted Roller

large_bbe19130-652c-11ea-a8ec-4dfcfa7f2b46.jpg
He's found a bug

large_ebd25d20-652c-11ea-a8ec-4dfcfa7f2b46.jpg
He briefly lands on the road

large_fbbc27c0-652c-11ea-a8ec-4dfcfa7f2b46.jpg
Then takes off again

large_78ea9810-652f-11ea-b52e-ddf29c466bb8.jpg
The roads are still very muddy

large_87286060-652f-11ea-b52e-ddf29c466bb8.jpg

Sausage Tree

Named for the huge sausage-like fruits hanging down, which in fact are poisonous when raw. They can, however, be dried, roasted or fermented to make an alcoholic beverage.

large_6cf86d70-652f-11ea-b52e-ddf29c466bb8.jpg

large_b18baa10-652f-11ea-b52e-ddf29c466bb8.jpg
Eastern Chanting Goshawk

Lobo

Malisa suggests we head north towards Lobo, partly to get away from all the crowds in Seronera, and also in the hope of seeing some elephants. I have been very surprised at the lack of pachyderms on this trip.

large_aba6f230-6552-11ea-82ea-23a65bd52e89.jpg
We need to get out of this mess

large_b42620b0-6553-11ea-82ea-23a65bd52e89.jpg
Another flooded river crossing

Cape Buffalo

The first thing we see is a large herd of buffalo; although all we can really see is the top of their backs sticking up over the long grass.

large_9d935c40-6554-11ea-82ea-23a65bd52e89.jpg

Olive Baboons

A large troupe of baboons walk past our car on the road.

large_8ce8a0b0-6556-11ea-a45f-e5c23be7a00d.jpg

large_9aec1f20-6556-11ea-a45f-e5c23be7a00d.jpg

large_a55e1260-6556-11ea-a45f-e5c23be7a00d.jpg

large_af965800-6556-11ea-a45f-e5c23be7a00d.jpg

Little Bee Eater

large_05c77080-655a-11ea-8484-b335302e15f0.jpg

large_107f4660-655a-11ea-8484-b335302e15f0.jpg

large_1e3f4040-6567-11ea-9c8b-af24250adfa2.jpg
Pin Tailed Whydah

large_2c1e94e0-6567-11ea-9c8b-af24250adfa2.jpg
Fan Tailed Widowbird

Orangi River crossing

Apparently this was full and overflowing yesterday. It's amazing how quickly it dries out in this heat.

large_b766b5a0-6567-11ea-9c8b-af24250adfa2.jpg

large_7d2dd020-6568-11ea-9c8b-af24250adfa2.jpg
Red Billed Hornbill

large_e89c1a10-6568-11ea-9c8b-af24250adfa2.jpg
Lilac Breasted Roller

Topi

large_928a7e30-656a-11ea-b709-09f723d54d24.jpg

large_9dfa5970-656a-11ea-b709-09f723d54d24.jpg

large_a870b980-656a-11ea-b709-09f723d54d24.jpg

large_7e14e9e0-656a-11ea-b709-09f723d54d24.jpg
The landscape is very different up here.

large_f7bc4130-656a-11ea-b709-09f723d54d24.jpg
Impala

Grant's Gazelles

large_6f4ef3e0-656c-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_8ae29580-656c-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_9434e7f0-656c-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_dac0e750-656c-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg
Eastern Chanting Goshawk

Turtle

Malisa spots the tiniest little turtle, his shell not much bigger than my thumbnail, trying to climb the mountainous (to him) tyre track in the road. We stop and make sure he gets out of the way before we carry on. He's heading for a small pond at the side of the road.

large_2d9663a0-656e-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_3a078240-656e-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

As soon as we stop, we get eaten alive by the &*%@# tsetse flies!

White Headed Vulture

The rare and endangered White Headed Vulture beaming down on us.

large_3d618d40-656f-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_47b80940-656f-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_529fc8c0-656f-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

It seems the only animals around here are the tsetse flies. We take a joint decision to return to Central Serengeti

large_08efb090-6570-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_a204fd80-6570-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg
Another turtle

large_0b610940-6571-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg
Topi

large_9176e720-6571-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg
Klipspringer

large_1ced1cc0-6572-11ea-9009-dfc7fdd5921c.jpg

large_3a16dcd0-6574-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg
Yet another Lilac Breasted Roller

large_4a872aa0-6576-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg
Pallid Flycatcher

large_d0e6bbb0-6576-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg
Little Bee Eater

More Klipspringers

large_f30db6d0-6576-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg

large_8600e2a0-6577-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg

large_90a7c890-6577-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg

He's not happy with us!

large_d4a1ab60-6577-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg

Another turtle – the water here is incredibly clear!

large_b685e2d0-6578-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg

We meet a ranger who tells us there elephants the other side of the kopje. We check it out, but they are so far away that I don't even bother to try and take a photograph. Instead we stop for our lunch picnic. More in the next blog entry.

Thank you Calabash Adventures for organising this safari.

large_22ed80e0-6579-11ea-bba9-5550f68380cb.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 02:35 Archived in Tanzania Tagged birds wildlife africa safari tanzania crocodile birding buffalo hippo baboons turtle roller serengeti butterflies stork vulture flycatcher lobo impala gazelle topi mongoose bird_watching hornbill lilac_breasted_roller swift calabash_adventures klipspringer swallow grant's_gazelle breakfast_picnic bee_eater game_viewing sausage_tree orangi_river togoro goshawk wildlife_photography whydah wildlife_viewing widowbird lion-prints hyena_prints picnic_chairs eacgle Comments (4)

Ngorongoro Crater Day 2 Part 1 - lions and elephants

An early start after a heavy night


View Tanzania for Lyn and Chris' 40th Anniversary 2018 on Grete Howard's travel map.

As often happens here on the south-western rim of the Ngorongoro Crater, a heavy mist hangs in the air as we leave this lovely camp behind and head off to “see what nature has to offer us this morning” (one of Malisa's favourite sayings).

Malanja Depression

After a season with abundant rain this year, this part of Malanja Depression has been transformed into a lake. Malisa tells me this is the first time surface water has collected here like this since 1997. There must have been a terrific amount of water here after the rains, seeing as we are now right at the end of the dry season and yet a considerable sized lake remains.

large_90cfc1a0-fb20-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_0670d2f0-fb21-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg
Giraffe

Spotted Hyena

It seems that in my drunken stupor last night, I left my camera on Tungsten White Balance and EV+2 from shooting the stars (or rather attempting to), resulting in a rather blue, overexposed image this morning. Thankfully it can be largely corrected in Photoshop.

large_4fa97460-fb24-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_58c7be80-fb24-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_e42ae150-fb24-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg
Grant's Gazelle

Ngorongoro Crater

As we head towards the Lemala Descent Road, we see the crater bathed in a glorious sunrise.

large_3b8baef0-fb22-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_ac9fe520-fb22-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

We are heading down into the crater this morning for a second visit.

large_acbeb060-fb25-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_ffc59260-fb25-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

By the time we get to the bottom, the caldera is shrouded in mist and full of dust unsettled by vehicles and animals.

large_959948e0-fb26-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_a1729450-fb26-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_77a99960-fb27-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg

large_e03ee7d0-fb29-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg
Grant's Gazelles

large_ecfec2b0-fb29-11e8-a013-5bbe1ebafc02.jpg
Red Billed Queleas

Helmeted Guineafowl

large_c9bc3380-fb2b-11e8-ae37-21880d4eaac5.jpg

large_dc3b7610-fb2b-11e8-ae37-21880d4eaac5.jpg

large_e592d190-fb2b-11e8-ae37-21880d4eaac5.jpg
Laughing Dove

Ostrich

large_6775e5c0-fb2d-11e8-8178-11a44134fb61.jpg

large_e2ae6460-fb2d-11e8-8178-11a44134fb61.jpg

Egyptian Goose

large_43d26750-fb2e-11e8-8178-11a44134fb61.jpg

large_1da38da0-fb30-11e8-b370-5b63e493644b.jpg

Thomson's Gazelles fighting over a female

large_ecf8a730-fb34-11e8-b370-5b63e493644b.jpg

large_8a08c870-fb35-11e8-b370-5b63e493644b.jpg

It's pretty serious stuff with a lot of effort and loud crashing of horns. They often fight until death.

large_4cfd4580-fb37-11e8-820b-ef9adf872b81.jpg

They look so cute and harmless, but they can be quite ferocious when the affections of a female is at stake.

large_0c18c390-fb38-11e8-bebb-3dbadb42b3e2.jpg

large_55db0ec0-fb38-11e8-bebb-3dbadb42b3e2.jpg

Wildebeest

Male wildebeest have specially modified glands situated under the eye called pre orbital glands, and here he is rubbing his face on the ground leaving a scent to mark his territory.

large_6c4ac990-fb31-11e8-b370-5b63e493644b.jpg

large_280df4e0-fb32-11e8-b370-5b63e493644b.jpg

large_9eab4080-fb32-11e8-b370-5b63e493644b.jpg
He seems rather pleased with himself

large_ee86fa40-fb32-11e8-b370-5b63e493644b.jpg

African Spoonbill

large_7345da00-fb3b-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

large_7e1110d0-fb3b-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

large_89ab7e80-fb3b-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

Wildebeest

large_c49133e0-fb3c-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

They remain totally unperturbed by the hyena in their midst.

large_5d4ca100-fb3d-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

large_a4e49220-fb3d-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

Lions

Two males and one female, just lying around doing absolutely nothing.

large_fe7060a0-fb3b-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

Occasionally one lifts his head to see if there is anything worth getting excited about before settling down again.

large_90a72f60-fb3e-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

large_9d2175c0-fb3e-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

Spotted Hyena

large_f135f730-fb3e-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

There are a few of them dotted around.

large_3a681050-fb3f-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

large_6a0f7730-fb3f-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

large_a06bf060-fb3f-11e8-a79a-0de84df1c5f2.jpg

Lerai Forest

Once an area of dense forest, Lerai is now more like a woodland glade, mostly because of the destructive actions of elephants such as this guy.

large_63ea0d30-fbac-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

We spend ages watching him decimate everything in his path until a ranger on foot comes along and (unintentionally) scares him away.

large_77dbf290-fbac-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_87626780-fbac-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_919bbe90-fbac-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_4deab9b0-fbae-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_980e85d0-fbae-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_5313df60-fbaf-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_5fca0830-fbad-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_a43e1980-fbac-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

Olive Baboons

Elephants aren't the only animals who live in Lerai Forest.

large_1d7f2d90-fbb0-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_27b30660-fbb0-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_319319e0-fbb0-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_d49f87f0-fbb4-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

large_dcdd0f00-fbb4-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg
Scraping at the bark of the tree to get to nectar or maybe insects

Strangler Fig

It is hard to believe that this mass of hanging branches is all one tree.

large_484a87e0-fbb0-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

Little Bee Eater

large_37a789f0-fbb1-11e8-b087-cd07b36c462a.jpg

large_3fc07200-fbb1-11e8-b087-cd07b36c462a.jpg

Bateleur Eagle

A colourful raptor with a large wingspan and very short tail, although this guy does look like he has even lost what little he had from before.

large_3e13d6a0-fbb5-11e8-a1d7-1f283b9628f4.jpg

Nubian Woodpecker

large_c3a0ecc0-fbc6-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

large_cfdcf1a0-fbc6-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

Black Faced Vervet Monkey

large_fc40b450-fbc8-11e8-bf17-510e0cce1a13.jpg

large_ea3234f0-fbc8-11e8-bf17-510e0cce1a13.jpg

large_6982d3e0-fbc9-11e8-bf17-510e0cce1a13.jpg

large_ffee6820-fbca-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

Call me infantile, but I am forever fascinated by their blue balls!

large_779d4040-fbca-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

And evidentially, so is he.

large_f64a7340-fbca-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

Elephant

As we try to make our way to the Lerai Picnic Site for breakfast, we are waylaid by a youngish (some 30 years old maybe) bull elephant on the road.

large_99a67600-fbd1-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

He munches his way right past our car – if I was so inclined I could reach out and touch him. He seems completely unfazed by us.

large_23f43130-fbd2-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

large_6f0c6f70-fbd2-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

We finally manage to get to the picnic site for our breakfast. And so ends Part ONE of today's adventures. Thank you Calabash Adventures for this great opportunity to see such amazing wildlife.

large_add15040-fbd2-11e8-80b3-59cfb298024b.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 01:06 Archived in Tanzania Tagged monkey elephant africa tanzania eagle battle birding photography crater lions giraffe flooding ostrich ngorongoro hyena woodpecker spoonbill geese caldera wildebeest goose east_africa bird_watching scent tungsten game_drive olive_baboons blue_balls spotted_hyena malanja_depression grant's_gazelle bee_eater ngrongoro_crater ang'ata_camp lemala_descent_road seasonal_lake white_balance fighting_for_female marking_territory orbital_glands vervet_monkey strangler_fig lerai_forest Comments (6)

Arusha - Ngorongoro Crater Day 1 Part 1

Worth the early start


View Tanzania for Lyn and Chris' 40th Anniversary 2018 on Grete Howard's travel map.

Lyn and Chris are nearly always up before us and are such sticklers for time-keeping that we are very surprised when they don't arrive at the agreed time for breakfast.

They finally show up some 20 minutes later – it turns out they had set the alarm time but not turned the alarm on. No harm done, thankfully, and we are all ready to go when Malisa arrives.

large_451695b0-f02e-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Augur Buzzard

A mere 100 metres down the road from the hotel we spot our first wildlife of the day: the regal Augur Buzzard.

large_08f998d0-f02d-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Not so welcome this morning are the police checks on our way to Ngorongoro, we get stopped at two of them for Malisa to show them his paperwork – which is all in order, of course - so we are soon on our way to “see what nature has to offer us today” (one of Malisa's favourite sayings).

Lodoare Gate

While Malisa waits for the paperwork at the entrance gate to Ngorongoro Conservation Area, we make use of the facilities and free wifi. We notice they have painted the gate a different colour to how it was when we came here last (it was a safari-beige, it is now a jade-green).

large_5beab370-f02e-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Crater View Point

Even here, miles from anywhere, free wifi is being advertised. I guess it is good for a brief 'boast post' on social media, but I do feel somewhat sad that being surrounded by wonderful nature and amazing wildlife is no longer enough.

large_43af6f20-f02f-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

large_6ba3dbb0-f02f-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

large_5e05fce0-f02f-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

large_b02d5450-f02f-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Malisa assures us that the small blob we see in the far, far distance is in fact a rhino.

large_98ae0270-f02f-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Porcupine

As I mentioned in yesterday's blog entry, I usually bring along a 'wish list' on my safaris, and porcupine is on this year's list. The next best thing to a live animal is seeing these porcupine spines. The meat has gone, of course, as it would most likely have been killed by a leopard for its dinner last night.

large_b7fac990-f031-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Chameleon

My wish list is going really well and so early on in the safari, with another item being ticked off when Malisa spots this Flap Necked Chameleon by the side of the road. I don't know just how he manages to spot it; as you can see it blends perfectly with its surroundings. I am excited about this small reptile as it is the first time I have ever seen a chameleon in Tanzania.

large_365b8a40-f032-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Ngorongoro Crater

We take a different route down into the crater today than the one we normally do: this time using the Lemala Descent Road. We have come down this track once before, a few years ago, and I love the way the track makes its way underneath the majestic Flat Topped Acacia Trees.

large_3eb958a0-f034-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

The trees, with their characteristic flat tops (hence the name), act as umbrellas and protect the soil from erosion during heavy rains.

large_4a4a2960-f034-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Look at how dense that canopy is ~ isn't nature wonderful?

large_5503d400-f034-11e8-9598-abbc579c2331.jpg

Sodom's Apple

Although this fruit belongs to the tomato family, you won’t find it in any salads. Known as Sodom’s Apple as it is said to be the first plant to grow again after the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah; the small, yellow fruit is used as a medicine for stomach ache, diarrhoea and to treat external wounds. When you see this plant growing, you know that the soil in the area is not of high quality as it grows best in poor soil.

large_60010750-f0e4-11e8-a491-55362bc2dc4d.jpg

Olive Baboons

A large troupe of baboons crosses our path.

large_19125c40-f0e9-11e8-88dd-8956a1e55cc2.jpg

large_29b64f20-f0e9-11e8-88dd-8956a1e55cc2.jpg

large_55ede3a0-f0e9-11e8-88dd-8956a1e55cc2.jpg

The little one who almost got left behind.

large_38f35f00-f0e9-11e8-88dd-8956a1e55cc2.jpg

large_4748ce00-f0e9-11e8-88dd-8956a1e55cc2.jpg

It is so sad to see empty water bottles littering the crater floor. Malisa explains that the Maasai tribesmen who come this way are guilty of this.

large_6672dcd0-f0e9-11e8-88dd-8956a1e55cc2.jpg

large_f3595200-f0ee-11e8-863a-bfbf30c24805.jpg
Love the human-like expression on the face of this baboon as he ponders his next move

This little guy appears to be trying to get some sleep while being carried on his mother's back.

large_795a4850-f0ef-11e8-863a-bfbf30c24805.jpg

Speckled Mousebirds

Sociable creatures, Speckled Mousebirds often huddle together for warmth and company. It was only when they moved apart that I realised this was in fact TWO birds, they were so close together initially.

large_148962a0-f0f2-11e8-863a-bfbf30c24805.jpg

Cape Buffalo

large_ea5d1d20-f162-11e8-9731-e5ceb92e53ba.jpg
He is right beside the car

large_fd3c9630-f164-11e8-9731-e5ceb92e53ba.jpg

large_4b9def80-f166-11e8-9731-e5ceb92e53ba.jpg
Unpredictable and highly dangerous, these guys have the most impressive horns. They reportedly charge thousands of people a year, and gore over 200. They can attack and cause serious injury with the tips of their huge, curved horns, or by head butting with their "boss" which is the solid shield of horn that covers the skull where the horns emerge.

Got to scratch that itch!

large_2b6f7390-f167-11e8-9731-e5ceb92e53ba.jpg

large_b9236ac0-f194-11e8-9c12-85044454dce8.jpg
Northern Wheatear (non-breeding female)

Warthogs

large_f6403220-f19a-11e8-9c12-85044454dce8.jpg

The sort of face only a mother could love

large_06e42500-f19b-11e8-9c12-85044454dce8.jpg

Uncharacteristically, these warthogs do not run away as we stop to take photos – they are usually such skittish creatures and these are remarkably close to the vehicle. They just lift their head and make a cursory glance in our direction before resuming their grazing.

large_f3c66310-f19b-11e8-9322-9f537e62e4eb.jpg

large_8eb8fb80-f19c-11e8-944e-bbf9bb1146b6.jpg

Ostrich

You can tell from the pink colouration to the neck and legs that this huge bird is on heat and ready to fertilise those all-important eggs.

large_e57a6290-f19e-11e8-9322-9f537e62e4eb.jpg

large_b34aa880-f1b1-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg
Augur Buzzard, apparently in a 'strop', stamping his feet: "I don't want to fly off!"

Zebra

large_02af7d30-f1b5-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg

large_ad9d3e00-f1b8-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg

large_33c01430-f1b9-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg

Grant's Gazelle

large_78c94420-f1b9-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg

large_94d0dd40-f1b9-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg

large_9de674d0-f1b9-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg

large_a9c73a50-f1b9-11e8-b960-75ed12430189.jpg
Crested Lark

Black Backed Jackal

large_062168d0-f26d-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_b4132230-f26d-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

Secretary Bird

We are rather bemused by this secretary bird performing his mating ritual. We are not quite sure who it is aimed at, as there are no other birds in sight. Maybe he is just practising for the real thing.

large_1525b570-f26d-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_47a8ec10-f26d-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_51ba6fd0-f26d-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

Lion

We initially wonder why this lioness is not chasing the warthogs, as they look to us that they could be an easy lunch, but then we discover that she is heavily pregnant and thus would be concerned that any exertion could make her lose the baby.

large_a740b440-f26e-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_50defc90-f270-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_be4f1be0-f26e-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_6350ee20-f26f-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_21e138a0-f26f-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg
She's just a big pussycat really

Is she going for it? They are pretty close to her now and would make an easy target.

large_9ed46a20-f270-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_0a3c4b70-f271-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg
Big baby belly

Too late, they've discovered her.

large_1f3dd6a0-f272-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

Instead she saunters off to try and find a safe place to give birth. I wish we could stay around for that.

large_7a09b450-f272-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

large_e1e69a20-f272-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg

By the time the lioness has disappeared, David admits that he is absolutely desperate to pee. We are just about to make a 'bush stop' when another vehicle turns up. A lot of heavy breathing and jumping from foot to foot ensues until Malisa can find a safe place for David to get out of the car. Getting back in again he lets out the largest sigh of relief you can imagine, much to everyone else's amusement.

large_ebf0d570-f273-11e8-a4fd-f16f42cecee8.jpg
Little Bee Eater

large_582d0270-f28f-11e8-8052-7f6ad4b132c4.jpg
Levaillant's Cisticola

large_c1ed6360-f291-11e8-8052-7f6ad4b132c4.jpg
Singing his little heart out

large_601fa190-f302-11e8-b35a-7f9e459e9aed.jpg
Tawny Eagle

Hippos

It is fairly unusual to find them out on land, normally all you can see is the top of their backs as they wallow in shallow water. Hippos cannot swim, so they will always find areas where the water is no deeper than they are able to stand at the bottom while still having their heads above the water. Here we can only just see the top of their backs as the rest is hidden by vegetation. Makes a change from water I guess.

large_89ffdf20-f32f-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

Just as we are about to leave the hippos and head to the picnic site, they get up and start to move, so we stay for a little longer, watching them splash into the small pond.

large_b5535530-f32f-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

large_c28b4640-f32f-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

large_d201dcb0-f32f-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

large_e35d86d0-f32f-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

large_f3f4f690-f32f-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

large_02bd99c0-f330-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

Ostrich Porn

On our way to lunch we get side tracked by another ostrich, and this one has found himself a likely suitor. Initially he pretends to be totally disinterested although it doesn't take long before he is doing his very best to impress her with a dramatic dance routine.

large_51eb0ec0-f307-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

large_787c8ff0-f307-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

large_8347c6c0-f307-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

large_91f71590-f307-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

She is bowled over by his sexy moves and capitulates to his charms.

large_c8b90750-f307-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

large_d6becfb0-f307-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

David caught it all on video, with narration provided by Chris

.

As soon as he's had his wicked way with her, he just gets up and walks away, leaving her apparently frustrated and still flapping her wings for attention, wondering what all the fuss was about. Sheesh. What a lothario!

large_1b21d490-f308-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

large_26b34190-f308-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

large_342fdcc0-f308-11e8-b489-f979b2e7a3e9.jpg

Zebras

We almost end up with a T-bone steak when a zebra without road sense decides to dart out in front of us. Thankfully no harm done.

large_919d0020-f332-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

large_9f3dec30-f332-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg

large_aec35a40-f333-11e8-8d27-11dca19acb2b.jpg
European White Stork - not a permanent resident in Tanzania, the stork is a seasonal migrant visitor from Europe

Waterhole

Last time we came to Tanzania (2017) was at the end of the rainy season, a green and verdant time. Now we are here at the end of the dry season, and everything is arid, dusty and brown, which makes this waterhole even more visually striking and of course a great temptation to the animals.

large_47690130-f34f-11e8-90db-6f1a98bbbd31.jpg

large_5d17b1c0-f34f-11e8-90db-6f1a98bbbd31.jpg

large_69682900-f34f-11e8-90db-6f1a98bbbd31.jpg

I love the way Big Bertha seems to have picked out the personality of these buffalo.

large_e58af5b0-f351-11e8-90db-6f1a98bbbd31.jpg

large_f31f5ea0-f351-11e8-90db-6f1a98bbbd31.jpg

large_088aebb0-f352-11e8-90db-6f1a98bbbd31.jpg

large_f05e2cb0-f35a-11e8-b510-cf6e19121590.jpg
African Fish Eagle

Red Billed Quelea

Popularly referred to as 'feathered locusts', the Red Billed Quelea is Africa's most hated bird. For generations this small but voracious bird has gathered in huge numbers to decimate subsistence farmers' fields across the continent. With some colonies numbering into the millions, the quelea is the most abundant bird in the world, and sadly also the most destructive. With an estimated adult breeding population of at least 1.5 billion, it is believed that the agricultural losses attributable to the quelea is in excess of US$50 million annually which would be totally devastating to those already barely getting by.

large_14c568f0-f35d-11e8-b510-cf6e19121590.jpg

We finally make it to the picnic site for our lunch stop, and this is also where I will finish this blog post. Be sure to read the next entry for stories about the rest of our afternoon in the crater.

As usual, our thanks go to Tillya of Calabash Adventures and Malisa our driver, without whom this fabulous safari would never have happened.

large_3e9413c0-f35d-11e8-b510-cf6e19121590.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 02:17 Archived in Tanzania Tagged trees animals africa safari tanzania zebra national_park buffalo lion rhino baboons ostrich lioness ngorongoro acacia warthog chameleon arusha jackal hippos viewpoint porcupine big_bertha lark calabash_adventures which_safari_company best_safari_company tawny_eagle mousebird grant's_gazelle lodoare_gate red_billed_quelea quelea bee_eater africa_animals augur_buzzard safari_permit flat_topped_acacia acacia_trees umbrella_trees sodom's_apple pregnant_lioness cisticola Comments (3)

Tarangire Part II - Arusha - Istanbul - Birmingham - Bristol

More elephants


View The Howards' 40th Anniversary Tour 2017 on Grete Howard's travel map.

Fully fed and watered after a delicious picnic breakfast, we are soon on our way to “see what nature brings us this afternoon”.

Despite the rainy season being upon us, there doesn't seem to be much water in the Tarangire River at the moment.

large_Tarangire_River_1.jpg

large_Lesser_Striped_Swallow.jpg

A family of Lesser Striped Swallows dig in the dried riverbed for worms.

large_Swallow__Lesser_Striped_1.jpg

large_Swallow__Lesser_Striped_2.jpg

large_Swallow__Lesser_Striped_3.jpg

large_Swallow__Lesser_Striped_4.jpg

large_Tree_Hyrax.jpg

large_6B81FEF39681B5BB13FAE0B9EDD0AB89.jpg

large_Hyrax__Tree_2.jpg

large_Hyrax__Tree_3.jpg

large_A239270EB4976293CF6F39993F6C8627.jpg

The normally shy impala stay by the side of the road looking at us as if transfixed. It makes a great change from them running away as soon as the car pulls up alongside them.

large_Impala_123.jpg

large_Impala_124.jpg

Like the elephants, they are so close I can almost touch them.

large_Impala_121.jpg

large_Impala_122.jpg

They are such elegant creatures.

large_Impala_126.jpg

large_Impala_127.jpg

Impala are affectionately known as “McDonalds”. Not because they make great burgers, but because of their rump markings resemble the “M” on the famous fast food chain's logo.

large_Impala_129.jpg

large_Impala_Bum.jpg

large_More_Elephants.jpg

Another large herd – or memory – of elephants appears as if out of nowhere.

large_Elephants_705.jpg

There are 16 family members in total, including a tiny infant, no more than 10 days old at the most. You can just about see him here (below), immediately behind the leading matriarch, being protected by his older sister with her trunk slung affectionately over his back.

large_Elephants_706.jpg

large_Elephants_708.jpg

The rest of the family follow behind.

large_Elephants_707.jpg

It is fascinating to watch: when the matriarch at the front stops, everyone else stops, even those at the back. When she moves, the rest move.

large_Elephants_709.jpg

large_Elephants_710.jpg

We get really excited when we realise they are all going to cross the road. We might even get to see that baby properly.

large_Elephants_711.jpg

large_Elephants_713.jpg

large_Elephants_715.jpg

Sixteen large animals crossing the road and the only sound we can hear is that of the grass rustling as they walk through. Elephants move in almost total silence, thanks to their spongy hooves that make for a soft step.

large_Elephants_716.jpg

large_Elephants_718.jpg

large_Elephants_719.jpg

The elephants just keep coming and coming. One after another, all in a straight line. Just like Jungle Book.

large_Elephants_720.jpg

large_Elephants_722.jpg

One of them deviates from the line and walks right by our car.

large_Elephants_730.jpg

This little guy seems to have lost his tail, poor thing.

large_Elephants_724.jpg

The elephants continue on their journey through the park, and so do we.

large_Elephants_725.jpg

large_Grey_Headed_Kingfisher.jpg

large_Kingfisher__Grey_Headed_1.jpg

large_Giant_Morning_Glory.jpg

At around eight feet tall, these large flowering plants make me think of a horror film for some reason, where ordinary small plants grow to enormous proportions and take over the world. Yes, I know, I have an over-active imagination.

large_Giant_Morning_Glory_1.jpg

large_Giant_Morning_Glory_2.jpg

large_Namaqua_Dove.jpg

At the other end of the scale, the Namaqua Dove is surprisingly small.

large_Dove__Namaqua_2.jpg

large_Dove__Namaqua_4.jpg

large_F5095540FAB07ED0E862506A7E512E47.jpg

large_F4E38973D56E3CB68F0E5A50C3290E05.jpg

large_Gazelle__Grant_s_32.jpg

large_F50A533AA9444C1C6E774C381C4E930C.jpg

large_Hammerkop_31.jpg

large_F50D1117B07D44F246141783B5CB36F1.jpg

large_Elephants_801.jpg

The elephants of Tarangire are known for their aggression and dislike of people, and one of these makes it quite clear what he thinks of humans as he feels the car is too close to his domain.

large_Elephants_802.jpg

large_Elephants_803.jpg

large_Watching_the_Elephants_1.jpg

large_F62943FEA10A33BF433BB3B97D0FB77A.jpg

large_Elephants_734.jpg

large_Elephants_733.jpg

large_Elephants_735.jpg

large_Bare_Faced_Go_Away_Bird.jpg

The male is energetically performing a courtship ritual by jumping from branch to branch like a lunatic. The female looks totally unimpressed.

large_Go_Away_Bi..ip_Ritual_2.jpg

large_Go_Away_Bi..ip_Ritual_3.jpg

large_Go_Away_Bi..ip_Ritual_4.jpg

large_Go_Away_Bi..ip_Ritual_5.jpg

large_Go_Away_Bi..ip_Ritual_6.jpg

large_Go_Away_Bi..ip_Ritual_7.jpg

large_Mpingo_Picnic_Site.jpg

large_Mpingo_Picnic_Site_2.jpg

large_F9733127F8AA904BC9C81CA8FB25D104.jpg

It doesn't take us many minutes after getting out of the car before we decide that this is most definitely not the place to have lunch. The area is absolutely full of pesky tse tse flies.

The black and blue flag you can see on the picture, is supposed to help keep the population of these horrible little insects down, as the tse tse are particularly attracted to those two colours. The flags are impregnated with a substance which make them infertile, thus the number of flies should become reduced. Sorry guys, it doesn't seem to be working.

large_Tse_Tse_Flag.jpg

We quickly get back in the car again and head back to Matete where we had breakfast this morning, game viewing on the way.

large_Red_Billed_Quelea.jpg

large_FDCEA2F1E08BED22E54E43EDE03E923F.jpg

Popularly referred to as 'feathered locusts', the Red Billed Quelea is Africa's most hated bird. For generations this small but voracious bird has gathered in huge numbers to decimate subsistence farmers' fields across the continent.

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_3.jpg

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_4.jpg

They look such cute little things, but with some colonies numbering into the millions, the quelea is the most abundant bird in the world, and sadly also the most destructive.

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_15.jpg

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_13.jpg

With an estimated adult breeding population of at least 1.5 billion, it is believed that the agricultural losses attributable to the quelea is in excess of US$50 million annually which would be totally devestating to those already barely getting by.

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_5.jpg

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_6.jpg

From our point of view, however, it is amazing to see and hear them take off en masse – the whoosh sound they make as they all fly from tree to tree is quite something.

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_18.jpg

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_7.jpg

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_17.jpg

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_8.jpg

Looking on the bright side, I suppose while they are here in the national park eating wild grasses, they are not causing destruction to farmers.

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_10.jpg

large_Quelea__Red_Billed_16.jpg

large_FE9832EDB17CA6AC7C56973ABC012453.jpg

large_Horn_Bill__Red_Billed_67.jpg

large_Crested_Francolin.jpg

large_Francolin__Crested_1.jpg

large_Grey_Hornbill.jpg

large_Hornbill__Grey_1.jpg

large_02E1CEC5B46B5B25124A746DD892F893.jpg

large_Roller__Li..reasted_603.jpg

large_02E2CBA4F8672803E4C40CD62A5E8351.jpg

large_Dove__Namaqua_21.jpg

large_Calabash_Safaris.jpg

Some months ago I answered a question on Trip Advisor from someone who wanted suggestions for a safari company in Tanzania. Having recommended Calabash, the original poster and I continued to talk from time to time, right up until we left for Africa, and soon realising we'd be in Tanzania at the same time. We knew the only opportunity we had to be able to actually meet in person, would be today in Tarangire. I spot their car from quite a distance, thanks to the Calabash logo on the side.

large_Agata_on_s.._Calabash_1.jpg

It is great to finally be able to put a face to the name, and Agata is every bit as lovely in real life as she is on line. Her partner Dom is a really sweet guy too; and of course it is nice for Malisa that gets to chat with John, their guide, and catch up on news.

large_Agata_on_s.._Calabash_4.jpg

large_Magpie_Shrike.jpg

large_035A6309D0B9717FC53CBFADC0DDA45B.jpg

large_02E0C275F094118602124B143FE932F6.jpg

large_Impala_852.jpg

Today seems to be full of animals and bird that come really close to the car. Unlike most impala, who run away as soon as the vehicle pulls up next to them, these stay right by the side of the road as we stop to admire their graceful appearance.

large_Impala_853.jpg

large_Impala_858.jpg

large_Impala_859.jpg

We have a youngster with an itch that appears hard to scratch.

large_Impala_854.jpg

large_Impala_855.jpg

large_Impala_856.jpg

“I just can't quite reach...”

large_Impala_857.jpg

large_05A0C484CF189409EEFDBD01FA52022F.jpg

A family of mongooses who are milling around in a clearing stop and briefly look at us before carrying on with their lives.

large_Mongoose__Banded_81.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_82.jpg

Today really is a day full of close encounters! Crossing the road right in front of us makes this my closest sighting ever of these small furry mammals.

large_Mongoose__Banded_83.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_84.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_85.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_86.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_88.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_89.jpg

Eggs are one of their favourite foods, and this guy has got a large one. (Excuse the very bad photo, it's the only one I managed to get)

large_Mongoose__Banded_90.jpg

large_Baobab.jpg

Another one of Tarangire's claims to fame is the number, size and age of its baobab trees. Popular with elephants for the ability to store water in their trunks, baobabs are often left with battle scars from the encounters.

large_Baobab_76.jpg

Malisa explains that providing this tree does not receive any further assaults from elephants, it should be able to re-grow and continue to live. Any more battering will surely be the end of it though as it will collapse and die.

large_Baobab_75.jpg

large_24540B8BF9A2611905C0F23AFC33A7B1.jpg

As we are talking about baobabs, a lion appears 'out of nowhere', leisurely walking along the road in front of us, before taking a rest.

large_247B98A8ECEA8796EFAA4D3765D584FD.jpg

large_247F439A92F9FC76843D55285F631510.jpg

large_Lion_73.jpg

After a short break, he continues on his way, slipping into the long grass beside the road. It is all over in a few minutes, and we are the only people who saw him. Right time, right place I guess.

large_24AA1389DDD8C3EB5C1649C970206978.jpg

large_24B0635BE2F2BDEFD0842091465679BA.jpg

large_Lion_77.jpg

Lions are said to be hard to spot in Tarangire, but we have had some luck over the years with a sighting on all but one of our visits (and on the one visit we did miss, we saw a lioness and two cubs outside the park boundaries)

large_24BA1DF5E5F52379199EA2CAA81E93FA.jpg

large_Lion_79.jpg

large_253B2144BE20EA1C958A0E02E7F48947.jpg

Unlike earlier when we stopped here for breakfast, now the picnic site is full of tourists enjoying a break and having lunch.

large_Matete_Picnic_Site_17.jpg

large_2539BE25FF36059B77E41F845B8C72E7.jpg

large_Monkey__Bl..nic_Site__6.jpg

The presence of lots of people also attracts these scavengers to the picnic site.

large_Monkey__Bl..nic_Site__1.jpg

large_Monkey__Bl..nic_Site__5.jpg

They may look cute, but they are scheming little thieves, who hang around the picnic tables, waiting for an opportunity to nab any unprotected food.

large_Monkey__Bl..ic_Site__17.jpg

large_Monkey__Bl..nic_Site__3.jpg

If the opportunities are slow at materialising, these intelligent creatures create their own opportunities. The have learned that if they make a lot of loud noise, imitating their warning calls, down at the railings overlooking the valley, curios tourists will flock to see what is making the monkeys so agitated. This then gives their mates a chance to snatch any food left behind on the picnic tables. We see several people falling for this trick today.

large_Monkey__Bl..nic_Site__7.jpg

large_Monkey__Bl..ic_Site__11.jpg

It's not just the picnic tables that get the once over from these cheeky guys, here you can see one of them checking out our car for the slightest chance of some food. Fortunately we made doubly sure we closed and locked all windows, doors and roof.

large_Monkey__Bl..nic_Site__9.jpg

large_Monkey__Bl..ic_Site__10.jpg

Fed up with the opportunist thieves, a group of French tourists shout “allez, allez” at the monkeys. The would-be robbers take absolutely no notice of course, continuing to approach the table from every angle. Laughter ensues when an Englishman on the next table informs them that the monkeys "only speak English you know”.

large_Monkey__Bl..nic_Site__8.jpg

large_Monkey__Bl..ic_Site__13.jpg

large_Monkey__Bl..ic_Site__16.jpg

One of the most remarkable things about the Black Faced Vervet Monkey, is its bright blue testicles. When I say “bright blue”, I mean iridescent, almost glow-in-the-dark blue.

large_Monkey__Bl..ic_Site__14.jpg

Even a Superb Starling tries to muscle in on the action, looking for crumbs dropped by tourists.

large_Starling__Superb_901.jpg

We have to leave the picnic area, and in fact Tarangire National park, to make our way back to Arusha and later our flight home. We will of course “see what nature has to offer us” on the way to the park gate.

large_Southern_Ground_Hornbill.jpg

This enormous bird (it stands at 130cm / 4'3”) is the largest of all the hornbill species, and as the name suggests is usually found on the ground.

large_Hornbill__..rn_Ground_8.jpg

large_Hornbill__..rn_Ground_6.jpg

This female is doing what girls all over the world do every day: preening herself.

large_Hornbill__..rn_Ground_2.jpg

large_Hornbill__..rn_Ground_4.jpg

large_28280A63D571A2DF77E7E1C092F15261.jpg

large_Go_Away_Bi.._Bellied_41.jpg

large_Go_Away_Bi..ced__41__2_.jpg

large_287BA6D30020E377720333F954619F17.jpg

It looks like this year's elephant fashion includes pierced ears.

large_Elephant_601.jpg

large_2A708EEFE3C20A1A1F327553A9E4D063.jpg

Another mongoose family. These, however, take fright as soon as they see us.

large_2A8D2ED5DCD563109F2B8A46A2262AFC.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_102.jpg

Stopping occasionally to check if we are still following them.

large_2C336E95C5155C59F724D52848D58953.jpg

large_2C3A596CE9178862EB6380042637E18F.jpg

large_Mongoose__Dwarf_210.jpg

large_The_End.jpg

And so this ends our 2017 safari in Tanzania. Despite being awfully poorly, I have enjoyed myself very much, thanks to being so extremely well looked after by David, Malisa and all the lodge staff along the way. Not to mention Tillya of Calabash Adventures of course, who made sure I was still OK and coping every day.

Being able to carry on as 'normal' as possible on the trip has been mostly down to adrenalin and as soon as we leave the last park and start the long journey home, I relax and it hits me big time. Everything from then on is a blur: the visit to Tillya's beautiful new office; trying to find a toilet in a leisure centre when I suddenly have a bout of diarrhoea; the emotional moment we have to say goodbye to Malisa; the check in to Kia Lodge in Arusha for a shower, change and dinner; the moving to a different room because the A/C is not working and there is no drinking water in the room; the transfer bus to Kilimanjaro Airport; the panic upon being asked for my UK visa at the check-in desk and having to explain that as an EEA national I don't need one despite the Brexit; the flights from Kilimanjaro – Istanbul – Birmingham; being transported from the plane in a wheelchair; and the drive home where I can finally collapse in bed.

large_Birmingham_Wheelchair.jpg

Writing this blog and editing the photos back home has been great for me, as there is so much of the trip that I don't remember. So many of the notes I made at the time (thank goodness I did) where I have had to ask David: “what did I mean by this?”. This time, instead of re-living the trip as I usually do when I publish my blog after our return home; I have really just 'lived it' as I missed so much the first time round.

Here's to the next safari (this time hopefully in perfect health!) with Calabash Adventures, the best safari operators by far!

large_2CEF3A05D72EC523C0671E192116614E.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 15:02 Archived in Tanzania Tagged elephants africa safari tanzania site lion baobab tarangire wheelchair impala mongoose hyrax hornbill lilac_breasted_roller swallows calabash_adventures hammerkop black_faced_vervet_monkeys tse_tse_flies banded_mongoose birmingham_airport grant's_gazelle go_away_bird dwarf_mongoose matete_picnic giant_morning_glory namaqua_dove red_billed_quelea africa's_most_hated_bird quelea mpingo_picnic_site francolin magpie_shrike superb_starling southern_ground_hornbill Comments (9)

Serengeti Day II Part II - Research Ponds

A smorgasbord of animals


View The Howards' 40th Anniversary Tour 2017 on Grete Howard's travel map.

Making our way across the savannah, I am surprised to see how dry the grass is already considering we are still in the wet season, albeit towards the end.

large_Driving_Ac.._Savannah_1.jpg

Parched from the hot sun, the surface of the earth has cracked, forming a thin crust easily disturbed by passing animals.

large_Parched_Earth_31.jpg

large_Parched_Earth_33.jpg

large_Parched_Earth_34.jpg

large_Hartebeest.jpg

large_C8EB6BAFB69BDA14A2F17106D9F49F5C.jpg

With the gentle movement of the car, the warm sun and the number of tablets I am taking for my chest infection; I go into a deep sleep. Only when the car slows to a standstill nearly an hour later, do I wake up.

large_2CD3DCB9F77E261F87E03B60AD1D89E1.jpg

Our reason for stopping soon becomes obvious.

large_C906B975BBE3D091C956C48C4A342D55.jpg

On a nearby rock, another lioness is sunning herself.

large_CA927CC1DB70B6BFDA43042E4C5F52BA.jpg

While we are busy photographing the cats, my Facebook friend Jim and his family / friends turn up. Serengeti is a large place, so the chances of seeing him here today is very small. We have already seen them once in Ndutu. It really is a small world.

large_Photographing_the_Lions_1.jpg

large_Jim_and_Co_1.jpg

large_Jim_and_Co_2.jpg

Bored with sunbathing, the lioness jumps down and takes a stroll in morning heat.

large_Lion_402.jpg

large_Lion_403.jpg

large_Lion_404.jpg

large_Agama_Lizard.jpg

The Red Headed Rock Agama doesn't seem the least bit bothered about a lioness walking past his rock.

large_Lizard__Re.._Rock_Agama.jpg

large_F5B024640CF632DD74DBB7E0EAB4C84E.jpg

Nor does the Black Backed Jackal.

large_Jackal__Black_Backed_401.jpg

large_C8CC8114071D6FB6E70223DFF83FEC7E.jpg

Resting peacefully in the shade of a tree, two 'Rasta Lions' momentarily sit up, barely opening their eyes to check us out, then lie down to sleep again. Oh, it is such a hard life to be a lion here.

large_Lion_405.jpg

large_Lion_407.jpg

large_Lion_408.jpg

large_Lion_411.jpg

large_Lion_406.jpg

large_Lion_414.jpg

large_Lion_415A.jpg

large_Starlings.jpg

This picture shows the difference between the Superb and the Hildebrand Starlings.

large_Starling__..debrand__51.jpg

The Superb in the foreground has a white band on his chest and a white eye; whereas the Hildebrand (singing his little heart out) has no marking between the orange and blue, and the eye is black.

large_2F5B535BC9DD3276919D06563851258B.jpg

large_Topi_101.jpg

large_2F59BD14B0603A3D9F5F35B4A3B2C32F.jpg

This guy has obviously lost a horn while fighting for a female. I hope she was worth it!

large_Gazelle__G..-horned__51.jpg

large_2F7FB22BF85A5D6BF32747968362234E.jpg

A very similar antelope to the topi, but as you can see, the colouring is not the same (the topi has very dark markings on the head and legs), and the horns are different shapes.

large_2FA166D60CEC515F1F50224F146F7BF3.jpg

large_Endless_Plains.jpg

The name 'Serengeti' comes from a local Maa word 'sirenget' (the language spoken by the Maasai tribe) meaning 'endless plains'. Driving for what seems like an eternity (in reality probably no more than around half an hour) across the flat, parched landscape, seemingly devoid of all life, I can certainly see that the name is very fitting.

large_300C229BF3DB474D2C59E8A6757F8D52.jpg

large_Research_Ponds.jpg

Arriving at a series of waterholes known as Research Ponds, we stay for a while to watch the goings on at the water's edge. Although initially appearing somewhat uninspiring, with just a couple of buffalo and some Grant's gazelle grazing in the background, this place proves to be rather fruitful in terms of animal sightings and interactions.

large_Buffalo__Cape_201.jpg

A dazzle of zebra (other collective nouns for zebra include zeal and cohort) make their way to the ponds.

large_Zebra_405.jpg

More and more animals arrive as we sit by the ponds in the oppressive midday heat.

large_Zebra_407.jpg

It's like Happy Hour at our local bar!

large_Zebra_408.jpg

Additional animals are constantly appearing, their hooves throwing up clouds of dust that hang heavily in the hot air.

large_Zebra_415.jpg

large_Zebra_417.jpg

The zebra, like the buffalo before them, immerse themselves in the still water, drinking, bathing and cooling down.

large_Buffalo_and_Zebra_1.jpg

large_Zebra_418.jpg

On the horizon a herd of eland nervously make their way towards the waterhole. Normally extremely shy (as a result of being endlessly hunted for their delicious meat), we wonder if – or more likely when – they will start running in the opposite direction.

large_657861BFB6313B83A88516F0DFCB85B6.jpg

So far so good as they cautiously move nearer and nearer the water.

large_Eland_32.jpg

large_84A467539A1CA41F3CC93E36A89B780A.jpg

large_Eland_and_Zebra_2.jpg

I am so excited to see them drinking – this is definitely a first for us!

large_Eland_33.jpg

The other elands are looking at us apprehensively, as they consider whether it is safe enough to quench that thirst.

large_Eland_and_Zebra_4.jpg

The zebra, on the other hand, do not seem to have a worry in the world.

large_Zebra_423.jpg

Another eland has braved it to the water's edge.

large_Eland_34.jpg

But will he drink?

large_Eland_35.jpg

Yes, he will. They are getting very brave now.

large_Eland_36.jpg

The zebra look on with amazement (or is that my overactive imagination again?) as a band on mongooses make their way down to the water for a drink.

large_Mongoose__Banded_101.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_103.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_104.jpg

They are loving the water, rolling around in the mud at the shoreline.

large_Mongoose__Banded_106.jpg

large_Mongoose__Banded_107.jpg

From a quiet waterhole with just a couple of sleepy buffalo, the place has now come alive with activity and several different animal species. This is awesome!

large_6693D618D192EC1A5365F785AD4FFBAA.jpg

large_Eland_and_Zebra_5.jpg

There is even a couple of amorous Egyptian Geese on the water.

large_Zebra_and_Eland_1.jpg

Having all these newcomers disturbing his hitherto peaceful morning siesta, Mr Buffalo gets up and moves on to pastures new.

large_Buffalo__Zebra__Eland_1.jpg

large_Buffalo__Cape_204.jpg

He looks thoroughly pissed off.

large_Buffalo__Zebra__Eland_2.jpg

large_Buffalo_and_Eland_1.jpg

The mongoose have had enough too.

large_Mongoose__Banded_108.jpg

Even the zebra are on the move.

large_Zebra_425.jpg

large_Zebra_426.jpg

large_Zebra_428.jpg

I have never noticed before that zebras vary so much in colouration. Look at how dark the one on the left is compared to the zebra behind him.

large_Zebra_429.jpg

large_Zebra_430.jpg

Just as we decide to leave, a European White Stork arrives. They are not native to the African continent (the clue is in the name), rather a migrant. A bit like us then.

large_Stork__European_White_4.jpg

large_Stork__European_White_1.jpg

large_Stork__European_White_3.jpg

Another stork arrives, much to the bemusement of the eland.

large_Stork__European_White_5.jpg

And another.

large_Stork__European_White_7.jpg

large_Stork__European_White_8.jpg

The moment Malisa starts the car engine, the shy elands scatter. As expected. I am surprised they stayed this long.

As we travel towards Ogol Kopjes, we see a few animals on our way.

large_F5C23575C8FA5687678B82963F3B836D.jpg

A spotted hyena who barely raises his head from the puddle he was sleeping in when we pass.

large_Hyena_201.jpg

large_Pratincole.jpg

Common Praticole - a nice little lifer (a new bird species for us)!

large_Pratincole__Common_1.jpglarge_Pratincole__Common_4.jpg

large_Eurasian_Roller.jpg

Another lifer, the European Roller. This one has been on my wish list for a while now, so I am particularly excited to see him. Or her. I really can't ell from this distance.

large_Roller__Eurasian_2.jpg

large_F598253FC7B765094B2CD3639F22F3FA.jpg

large_Hartebeest_401.jpg

large_F59E09B9C46CD3B6B1C00BEE621DB3B7.jpg

A couple of topi on a mound looking out for predators.

large_Topi_401.jpg

large_F59FAA61A93BC1BAA2B82F4DA2D3012E.jpg

A cute little zebra foal, grazing with his mummy.

large_Zebra_438.jpg

large_Zebra_439.jpg

large_F5CE97BA0DFC355C868D47592CE26B7F.jpg

And some eland - running away from us of course.

large_Eland__Running_21.jpg

large_Eland__Running_22.jpg

Eland are pretty huge animals (around the size of an average horse), and create quite a considerable amount of dust as they gallop across the dry savannah.

large_Eland__Running_23.jpg

large_Eland__Running_29.jpg

We leave Ogol Kopjes behind and search for some shade for our lunch picnic.

large_Lunch_Picn..ol_Kopjes_2.jpg

large_Lunch_Picn..ol_Kopjes_1.jpg

large_Lunch_Picn..ol_Kopjes_4.jpg

Be sure to check out my next blog entry for the rest of this afternoon's safari experiences with Calabash Adventures, the best safari operator by far.

large_F533EA9E9BF1CED0A446583FB1CABAB7.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 05:56 Archived in Tanzania Tagged animals birds travel africa safari tanzania zebra lizard birding dry buffalo lions roller serengeti hyena stork starlings topi mongoose jackal bird_watching eland calabash_adventures hartebeest cape_buffalo kopjes grant's_gazelle endless_plains research_ponds cracked_earth parched pratincole eurasian_roller agama_lizard ogola_kopjes Comments (2)

(Entries 1 - 6 of 6) Page [1]