Gecko 81 at Addo – Day 2 and 3

Sunday, 5 June 2022

It rained last night and we woke to overcast and chilly weather.   Fortunately, we had put our chairs in a sheltered place.

I packed a breakfast bag and filled a flask and we were out of camp by 8:30 am.  There were a few spots of rain which soon cleared up and by afternoon the skies were clear again.  Temperatures were low but not unusual for this time of year.

We spent most of the morning exploring, stopping a Zuurkop Lookout Point to have breakfast. We did not go to the southern part of the park until our afternoon drive when we went in search of lions and did not find them!

Our first spot of the day – Pale Chanting Goshawk. There were two. The light was not quite right but still lovely to see these awesome birds.

You may alight from your vehicle at a place that overlooks Domkrag Dam and it is usually a worthwhile stop. We spotted elephants and kudu in the distance and the dam had a few birds to entertain us.

Grey Heron patiently waiting for some action
Juvenile Striated Heron catching the morning rays
A pair of Egyptian Geese – (Earl’s Photo)

Today as we drove around we saw a good number of malachite sunbirds.

They flitted about rapidly but this one reluctantly sat still for a few seconds.
The handsome Common Fiscal was more obliging
Very common but very pretty. I couldn’t resist snapping this female Cape Sparrow
And later a pair posed beautifully
A speckled mousebird soaking up the morning sun

We were hoping to be entertained by meerkats (Suricates) but instead, a pair of yellow mongooses put on a good show for us.

They are just so cute
This handsome guy was striding across the veld too.
And keeping a close eye on the girls

At Carol’s Rest Waterhole there was very little action. While we watched some ant-eating chats take a bath we heard a tapping on our rear window. It was a cheeky wagtail imagining that he saw a potential rival. He was attacking his reflected image! We had such a giggle and even when we drove away he followed us for ages. I got some shots in the side mirror!

Poor Waggy attacking an intruder!
Ellies were all over the park

Hapoor is usually a good gathering place for pachyderms but today it was fowl of the water variety.

A rather good-looking yellow-billed duck
And a hamerkop dropped in for a chat too
Kudu ruled in the park today and we saw quite a number of lovely males with stunning horns

Rooidam produced some waterfowl too.

Hamerkop
And a very busy spoonbill
Ghwarrie dam attracted elephants too

In the evening we went over to Jim and Maureen’s campsite. Jim had a fire going which created a lovely ‘gees’ (atmosphere) and kept us relatively warm.  Maureen cooked a delicious chicken and vegetable stir fry with just enough ginger and chilly to give it a bite.  

The sunset once again was just too stunning.

Monday, 06 June 2022

Omiword it was freezing when we got up at 7:30 am.    The temperature was about 4 degrees C.   After a hot shower and a warming cup of coffee we set off toward Colchester Gate and tried to find the lions on the Ngulube Loop where they had been reported but we had no luck.  We did, however, see an Aardwolf!   It was a lovely sighting but he dashed back into the bush and refused to pose for his portrait.   But this is a free clipart drawing of one!

And yes – he gave us such a look!

Of course, we stopped to photograph other creatures along the way and were pleased to see some of the waterholes had attracted a bit of wildlife.

Marion Baree Waterhole is one of my favourites
Warthogs really rule in Addo. This handsome lad was good enough to pose
The best bird in Addo has to be the Bokmakierie
Glossy Starling
A special bird to see – Red-necked Spurfowl

We exited at Colchester Gate and went to Taste of Africa for breakfast and to make a few purchases at the Spar next door.   It was still very cold at 10 am.

We then went back through the park and explored a few roads and waterholes enjoying some lovely sightings.

Quellea
Young kudu

At Peasland Waterhole there were simply scores of zebra coming and going

Don’t ask – something was funny!
There were lots of red hartebeest in the park too
We have seen the tail end of a few buffalo but this one decided to give me a quick glance
before heading off on his own mission
Lots of these girls were trying to hide amongst the trees
They have such pretty faces
Southern Bou-bous also made an appearance
Such a gorgeous bird
And please beware of dung beetles – Don’t drive over them and don’t drive over dung where they might be hiding.

More tomorrow if I get time – otherwise the next day!

9 thoughts on “Gecko 81 at Addo – Day 2 and 3

  1. Anne

    Lovely bird pictures today and I really like the photograph of the two mongooses. Do double check your Thick-knee … it may be a heron …

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      1. Anne

        Given that the presence of the Green-backed Heron is a bit iffy down Addo way, I would support your suggestion of a Black-crowned Night-heron. Whichever it is, this is a wonderful sighting!

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  2. safrounet

    Hi… a regal thank you, love all the birds and little critters. Just one thing, the “Thick-knee catching the morning rays” is a Heron
    thank you for all these pix ❤

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