Cool, crisp and windless mornings warm the soul during the winter months, despite chilling the skin, and never before has this been felt more clearly. From beneath layers and layers and preceding a deserved coffee break, those in search of wildlife have not been disappointed.
With still and quiet mid-July nights, predators have had to work desperately to remain undetected in their hunt, however, comfortable temperatures throughout the day have afforded them almost unlimited hunting opportunities.
With lions and leopards as active as ever, great herds of elephant moving through the Sabi Sands and plains species on the constant search for grazing areas, viewing remains unpredictable and exciting. We are also reminded of the beauty of the open bushveld and its bare face. The land persists and its inhabitants battle on.
Enjoy this Week in Pictures…
An amazing start to the week with an impressive track-and-find of the two Charleston males by Andrea Sithole and Sersant Sibuyi. Left with a damaged mouth and intact yet dislodged right canine many months ago, this male’s appearance draws lots of attention! 1/320 at f/2.8; ISO 1600.
Gentle light combined with a slow shutter and dead rest allows the night time beauty of the Nkoveni female to be captured as she slowly wakens atop a termite mound. 1/10 at f/2.8; ISO 1250.
As tracker Life SIbuyi follows leopard tracks on foot somewhere, ranger Garrett Fitzpatrick and guests explore the golden hour amongst giant trees. 1/1000 at f/2.8; ISO 250.
With an unconfirmed number of cubs stashed in the well protected confines of the Sand River, two Mhangeni lionesses continue their hunt throughout the morning and across the sandy crests. 1/800 at f/5; ISO 125.
Tracker Joy Mathebula looks on from the front as several Hyena clean up the remains of an abandoned carcass. 1/250 at f/2.8; ISO 500.
The technique of “panning” comes into its own once the natural light starts to fade and the subject is moving. These cubs in the riverbed provided a great opportunity to practice with a slow shutter. 1/20 at f/3.2; ISO 100.
A wide angle look at a stunning setup for a sundowner drink with new and old friends. 1/4 at f/4.5; ISO 1600.
The ever-inquisitive female Ostrich looks out into the setting sun with a ceiling of dramatic, yet vibrant, clouds; Londolozi evenings. 1/250 at f/10; ISO 800.
The cool evening’s eerie light fall across this thirsty Hyena and its rippled reflection. 1/1600 at f/5; ISO 400.
A colourless winter? Despite very dry conditions and little grass, vibrancy remains in the falling leaves of certain trees. These drying Round-leaved Teak leaves paint a beautiful backdrop for portraiture. 1/800 at f/5; ISO 400.
An unforgettable morning was spent with the Tsalala lionesses and their cubs. Approaching 5 months of age, one of the two older cubs actually dwarfs the remaining cubs of the second litter, who are just under two months old. Playtime is a privilege to witness! 1/640 at f/5; ISO 1000.
A hot afternoon sends this majestic White Rhino and a Red-billed Oxpecker into rest, both taking a break from the day’s feeding. The symbiosis evident. 1/640 at f/5; ISO 250.
One of the sub-adults from the Mhangeni breakaway pride during one of their many splits, perfectly side-lit by the steady hand of tracker Raymond Mabelane. Thank you Kev and Ray! 1/50 at f/2.8; ISO 1600.
This fortuitous find during the day pleased everyone! An African Barred Owlet out in the morning glow with great big yellow eyes. Tracker Rob Hlatshwayo, of course, credited with the noteworthy spot! 1/2000 at f/2.8; ISO 400.
Slowly expending his territory back northwards, the Makhotini male investigates from mound to mound in search of warthogs. A colourful eastern skyline reminds us to pull back and take in the full picture. 1/400 at f/2.8; ISO 800.
A colossal silhouette and dusty wake. 1/1000 at f/5.6; ISO 100.
Which moments did you enjoy most?
Be sure to look for the unappreciated beauty in something otherwise overlooked.
Have a phenomenal weekend.