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Namibia - June/July 2014

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Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Laikipia on Fri Sep 19, 2014 3:55 pm

We spent a day at Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia with Dr Laurie Marker and her partner Bruce and their amazing team.  We had a great morning watching the cheetahs run.  Most of the orphan cheetahs they take in will be released back to the wild but sadly not all of them can be.  They have 4 ambassador cheetahs that cannot be released but are able to help with education and the work of CCF.   As you can imagine it was a very special day and to be up and close and personal to these beautiful animals is simply inspiring, they purr like cats and are just so fast.  Taking photos was a challenge as they are running after a cloth on a low wire line and then can only due a few runs because of the heat.  

The ambassador cheetahs are Tiger Lily, Peter, Senay and Khayjay and this is our group with Laurie and 4 of her team + our safari group with Johnny and Angie Scott.



Mmmmmmmm - i don't seem to be able to upload anymore just now it says the connections has been lost so I will try again later with some close ups of the cheetahs. To upload that one photos took ages longer that it used to!

Lai Cheetah
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Safariman on Sat Sep 20, 2014 2:54 pm

Sounds as if you had a great day at CCF Lai. Hope you can manage to upload the rest of your pics.

It really is a magical experience to get up close and personal with cheetahs and they are probably the only big cat I am happy to get close to on foot.
I have been very lucky on several trips to SA to have opportunities to interact with cheetahs. At one camp I new the head ranger and we would head out with his tracker to look for cheetah. Although the cheetah were well habituated to humans having been around humans since their cub stage they still hunted for themselves and were basically wild. When we found the cheetahs we would leave the vehicle and then walk towards them until at about 5 or 6 metres would quietly sit down on the grass next to them. Although at first a little wary of us they would soon relax and then to hear them purring is out of this world. It sounds just like a domestic cat but ten times louder. We would stay with them for a few minutes before moving off.
I was also able to meet up with a pair of cheetah bros. who were used in a similar way to the CCF ambassador cheetahs being taking round to farms to show farmers that there was no need to shoot and kill the cheetahs but that they could be captured and relocated out of harms way. The two things I particularly noticed about them was how coarse their fur was, which I suppose it needs to be to withstand the rigours of their outdoor life, and how rigid their tails are almost like a metal rod so that it can act as a rudder when they make their high speed changes of direction when hunting. Talking to their handlers they said that they did not like taking them to schools as for a cheetah a child is just about perfect prey size and however domesticated they might seem they are still essentially wild animals and are always liable to react like one!!
To be able to interact with these wonderful creatures is definitely a privilege and something one never forgets.

I was wondering if the time taken to download your photo had something to do with the file size. I have noticed that any photo larger than 3mb can take a long time to upload and I always try and reduce the file size, normally by cropping, to speed up the posting.I know that with my present camera some photos are over 8mb which I think is too big for the system to deal with!!

SM
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  whitestarling on Sun Sep 21, 2014 11:36 am

WOW That must have been a fantastic experience at CCF I have seen a couple of documentaries about it, and knew about the ambassador Cheetahs, it's a shame they can't be released into the wild, but at the same time they are helping the survival of their species and are safe are well looked after.
Re photo uploading. CC had a similar problem a few weeks ago, at the time the host site was updating, and it was OK the next day. I agr'ee!w!Ithaca SM big file sizes are slow to upload. Did you use the new upload procedure ?.

WS

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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  WMTravellers on Sun Sep 21, 2014 6:51 pm

So looking forward to seeing more pics and reading more about your trip Very Happy

Did the cheetah's try to lick the salt off your skin? Their tongues are so rough!
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Doogs on Tue Sep 23, 2014 1:44 pm

Oh wowser Lai That just must have been such a wonderful experience. I was going to ask about their coats and if they were soft or rough but Safariman has done that for me Thanks I would just love to be able to stroke one and hear it purr like a vintage car !! Dr Laurie Marker is just such a wonderful person in all that she does for the Cheetah, it must have been amazing to meet her and hear her speak.

Looking forward to more photos Very Happy

Sounds like you've also had some wonderful close up experiences with cheetah's SM, how amazing to get within 6/7 metres on foot of a cheetah and great to hear they didn't mind you and still hunted for themselves.

I loved our close encounter with Malaika on top of our jeep a couple of years ago, that was pretty damn special Cheetah
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Laikipia on Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:23 pm

Thanks for your patience everyone. Sadly our Broadband has been playing up again at home and finally it just died completely. Pete arranged for BT to come today and then it seems they sorted it externally yesterday afternoon so currently we are on-line

WS I did try the new way of uploading, but it takes forever, and Safariman yes my files are large but I tend to crop before I post on WAA so I must try and shrink them some more! Sadly our BB speed is seriously slow here anyway so it will always take me ages. I will have a go at the weekend and add some more photos.

Lai

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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Laikipia on Thu Sep 25, 2014 10:26 am

It seems I can post from my work PC and not my home laptop, so here are a few from our CCF day.

(I shrank this some more)  These are all of the ambassador cheetahs









CCF breeds Anatolian Shepherd dogs to look after the goats/sheep.  They naturally bond with them and want to protect them.



The goat took a shine to Johnny



There were 3 puppies living with a few goats.  You aren't really supposed to touch or engage with the puppies as they must bond with the livestock but you can imagine what happened  Very Happy



I'll post a few of us with the puppies, they were just gorgeous and I really wanted one to come home with me I love you

Laurie with Tiger Lily







That's all for now  Very Happy

Lai
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Doogs on Thu Sep 25, 2014 1:06 pm

Oh Lai that just looks such an amazing visit, I really am quite alien with envy !!! but also so chuffed that you were able to experience that. The Cheetah's are just beautiful and you've got some lovely shots of them, you must have jsut oooohed and aaaahed all day !!!

Never heard of a Anatolian Shepherd but it looks very like an Andrex Puppy to me Laughing Definitely irresistable and deserving of a bosie or two !!

Love that photo of Johnny and the goat Very Happy lol!

Brilliant, thank you
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Safariman on Thu Sep 25, 2014 2:36 pm

Pleased that you have been able to upload your photos at last even though you had to use your work computer. The pics of the cheetahs are gorgeous must have been a super day.
I have seen a programme about the Anatolian Shepherd dogs and their use as guard dogs for livestock in Namibia to protect them from cheetahs, it must obviously work as they now breeding them. Are the goats for cheetah food or just for training purposes?

SM
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  WMTravellers on Sat Sep 27, 2014 3:51 pm

Oh my that puppy is adorable! Loving the cheetah pics and hearing about your visit, thanks for sharing Very Happy
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Laikipia on Wed Oct 01, 2014 11:02 am

Thanks everyone.  I'll try and sort out a few more to upload, I haven't done a slideshow this time due to losing most of my photos Shocked  but I've a few more of the beautiful scenery.

Lai
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  gregrowlerson on Sun Nov 16, 2014 1:02 pm

WOW Must have been a beautiful experience to be so close to these very peaceful looking and pacey prowlers. Really clear and super snaps taken; fantastic shares
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Laikipia on Mon Nov 17, 2014 8:04 am

Thanks  GR - they are truly magnificent animals and as for the puppies I love you  

Sadly I haven't been able to  upload at all from my laptop now and that is where all my photos are What a Face   I still want to share some puppy pics  Very Happy   I'll have another go now but as very small files ....

Yippee a couple more, I didn't take these two as I am in them  Laughing but the first is the friendly goat and the second is us with 3 of the puppies  Group Hug





Well at least I can post pics again

Lai
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  whitestarling on Mon Nov 17, 2014 11:25 pm

Great news you can post pics again Lai

I know I've seen a documenatry on the use of Anatoli Dogs to protect against Cheetah predation, and so save them, but I cant find it up to now. However I did find this clip from CCF



WS

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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Laikipia on Tue Nov 18, 2014 9:09 am

Laughing WS - i've not seen that clip before but it was very interesting to watch.

Lai
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  gregrowlerson on Mon Nov 24, 2014 9:54 am

Nice selfie (without the taking them yourself part Laughing ) shots there Lai. Lovely additions to this threads collection. Not bad I say for one with a misbehaving laptop!
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Re: Namibia - June/July 2014

Post  Laikipia on Tue Nov 25, 2014 3:26 pm

Thanks  G Giraffe  R - glad you liked them,  those puppies are just totally gorgeous, and the goats kind of grew on me.

Lai
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