27 November 2019
When we left camp at 07:40 it was 24 degrees C and climbing. By 6:50 we were on the Mooiplaas Loop where we saw Kitlitz plover. I was surprised that he was quite far away from water but on consulting my field guide I found out that he is sometimes seen in open fields.
On the S50 we had some good birding.
Suddenly the Earl said, “What’s that in the dead tree?” I nearly fell out of the car in excitement. “It’s an owl” We just haven’t seen all that many during this year’s visit to the park.
A little later the Earl screeched breaks and said, ‘Oh, sorry – it’s just a branch on the ground. I thought it was a Kori Bustard. The words were not cold on his lips when a real one appeared!
We had to stop for this guy who just didn’t have any road sense.
I like to stop at every puddle just in case something decides to come for a drink. The Earl says there is so much water lying in the bush that no self-respecting creature is going to need a roadside puddle. But today I yelled – STOP! The Earl was irritated but then saw that I had indeed seen something more than a common Cape Turtle Dove in this puddle!
We also saw some hogs
Before leaving camp we packed a picnic breakfast and flask to have when we got hungry as we were not going to be near any facilities than offered food. By the time we got to the Nyawutsi Hide we felt peckish so had our snacks there. We spent about an hour in the hide and saw some interesting things but photography was not easy. There was a fish eagle, a water monitor that disappeared before I could snap him, some distant hippos and terrapins, a monkey and a crocodile. We also saw a Woodland’s Kingfisher and heard the Brown-hooded Kingfisher. A Black-crowned Tchagra made a brief appearance but disappeared before I could snap him. Lots of swallows were flying around too.
On our way back to camp we had some more interesting sightings. There were big herds of impala and wildebeest and also of buffalo
We also went back to the causeway to see if there was anything happening
As we continued, I saw some little birds fly into the trees, drop to the grass and then disappear from sight. I had to see what they were so insisted we stop. For a while, we saw nothing. Then more arrived and we realised they were foraging in the long grass. They were not still for a minute but I managed to get one reasonable photograph.
We went to Mopani and shared a chicken mayonnaise wrap for lunch. Then we worked on our computers for an hour or two before returning to camp. It was 16:30 when we got back. We braaied before dark and also packed up the canopy and groundsheet for tomorrow’s departure. We sat outdoors in the dark for a while, then both of us took cold showers hoping that would cool us down. It didn’t help! But we eventually managed to get to sleep in spite of the heat. Sleeping on a towel, wrapped in a wet sarong is the answer when there’s no airconditioning. I’ve done that in Kgalagadi but didn’t think of it this time!