Wild About Animals
New members come, and say Hello
Plant a seed and watch it grow
Old Members why not share your news
We have loads more for you to choose
Guests your welcome to have a look
but why not sign up and then get hooked!
To All its a pleasure to have you with us

Note: New Members are expected to post within one Month of joining, and post on a fairly regular basis.

Mara Jan.2015

Page 2 of 2 Previous  1, 2

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Safariman on Wed Mar 04, 2015 3:15 pm

Thanks Lai and WS.
Lai, as I get older I realise that I might as well keep going back to Africa as often as possible while I am still reasonably fit as I know the time will come when its not possible. The big problem is always cost!!
WS, I am a lot happier with being very close to lions than I am to elephants. For me lions are more predictable but with elephants I am never too sure, their mood can change instantly, I know people love to call them "gentle giants" but that is not always the case.
The giraffe and lion seemed quite content in each others company and it was the giraffe that approached the lion for a closer look!! The lion was the Offbeat female who had just given birth to 3 cubs. Its curiosity satisfied the giraffe moved off leaving the lion to relax on the termite mound.

SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Wed Mar 04, 2015 4:05 pm

Too true Safariman on both counts. The cost is steep for sure but so worth it Very Happy

I agree 100% about lions v eles. I find watching eles at close range very daunting and would far prefer to be up close and personal with lions.



Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  whitestarling on Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:45 am

Errrrrrr Guys you might want to have a rethink affraid

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/earth/wildlife/6580461/Lion-opens-familys-car-door-with-his-teeth.html

Sorry saw it on news last night, and couldn't resist putting it on lol!

WS


_________________
If I can make somebody smile, my day has been worthwhile
avatar
whitestarling
Admin

Posts : 12826
Join date : 2009-12-26
Age : 72
Location : North Wales

http://wildaboutanimals.forumotion.net

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Thu Mar 05, 2015 1:15 pm

Very good WS Laughing

Frankly they should have had their doors locked being in a car like that and in a wildlife park where the lions see cars driving through endlessly.

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  whitestarling on Fri Mar 06, 2015 11:36 pm

Quite agree Lai just seemed such a coincidence it being on the news, after we were talking about it. i'll knock it off when you've seen it SM so it doesn't spoil your thread

WS

_________________
If I can make somebody smile, my day has been worthwhile
avatar
whitestarling
Admin

Posts : 12826
Join date : 2009-12-26
Age : 72
Location : North Wales

http://wildaboutanimals.forumotion.net

Back to top Go down

Breakfast for lion cubs

Post  Safariman on Tue Mar 10, 2015 4:04 pm

WS, you have to be very careful in wildlife parks. Unfortunately in their artificial environment the lions as Lai says only ever see cars apart from the times they are fed. I imagine to relieve the boredom playing games with the "visitors" is their only amusement. In the wild simple survival is their main occupation!!

This post goes back to lions and their cubs. The Acacia Pride and their numerous new cubs.
It was a beautiful crisp morning and the sun was just starting to warm things up when we saw in the distance a female lion asleep on a grassy bank. The gold of the lion contrasted with the vivid green of the grass making her visible from a long way off. As we approached it was obvious that she was lactating and therefore there must be cubs close by. We soon found them well hidden in some thick bush along with a second female. It was difficult to tell how many cubs there were but it seemed to be 4 or 5 probably about one month old. As we waited a couple of the cubs came out into the open to see if anything was happening and smell the fresh air before retreating to the sanctity of the bush. David moved our vehicle slightly away from the bush to the open area adjacent to the sleeping female.
It was not long before 2 cubs ventured out and approached presumably their mum and roused her from her slumber demanding food. Whenever lions get together they always go through a ritual of greeting each other wether they were close by or not. I think it must help to develop the very close bonds all the females and their cubs always have within the pride. It did not take long for the second adult to also come out into the open with the rest of the cubs. In fact to our delight there were 6 gorgeous little bundles of fur all hoping to be fed. The second female flopped down next to the other almost crushing one of the cubs who was under her and feeding time commenced. I never know when there is more than one female with cubs of similar ages as to which cubs belong to which mum as the cubs seem to just latch onto the first available teat. In this case it was 4 and 2 but the females could well have had 3 each, it was difficult to tell.
It was a magical and special privilege to be allowed into such an intimate moment in the lives of the lions. There were no other vehicles around, the sun was shining, they were all out in the open; it could not have been more perfect. After drinking their fill the cubs slowly retreated back to the safety and shade of the thick bushes leaving the 2 mums to relax and enjoy a little peace and quiet in the sunshine.
I took far too many photos and videos as the conditions could not have been better; these are just a few plus a video which is about 7 mins long. I could easily have doubled this and still not have used up all the footage I acquired!!






















SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Wed Mar 11, 2015 11:15 am

You the man Safariman WOW what a great time you must have had with the cubs and lionesses. Fingers crossed you see them again in June. The photos are lovely, they are just so tiny and adorable looking.

I will watch the clip later today, in my office just now pretending to work

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  whitestarling on Wed Mar 11, 2015 11:29 am

Oh http://i73.servimg.c WOW You the man You have outdone your self with that post SM thanks so much. Really really beautiful photos, and a wonderful clip which I have shared with my friends on WildEarth, and they think its a wonderful video. I would have loved to be present to see that live, but seeing your photos, video, and reading your story is the next best thing. Thanks for making my day, and another screen save the little cub under the leaves

WS

_________________
If I can make somebody smile, my day has been worthwhile
avatar
whitestarling
Admin

Posts : 12826
Join date : 2009-12-26
Age : 72
Location : North Wales

http://wildaboutanimals.forumotion.net

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Safariman on Wed Mar 11, 2015 2:27 pm

Thanks Lai and WS glad that you enjoyed them. Thanks also WS for posting it on your other site as I like to try and reach as bigger audience as possible particularly for those who don't get the chance to go on safari or are hoping to do so. I hope it shows that anybody can produce decent photos and videos with very little skill or expensive equipment. If I can do it anybody can!!
Lai I am not sure how many cubs will have survived by the time of my next trip in June. I think that this was a unique one off experience to see so many very young cubs all at the same time. It is also difficult for David and the other guides not only at Offbeat but also the other camps to keep up to date with what is happening as with very few guests at the moment they are not out and about as much as they would like to be.
I have still got several more posts to do including more lion ones when I have finished editing everything. I am finding video editing quite hard work particularly as a lot of the time I am not sure what I am doing. The results are generally more luck than skill.

SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Fri Mar 13, 2015 9:42 am

cheers Safariman you are doing an excellent job! It's so sad to hear how tourism is suffering in Kenya and how visitor numbers have dropped. Let's hope things pick up for them soon.

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  whitestarling on Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:18 pm

That's my aim to SM, the more we all can share experiences about not only Africa's wildlife, but all wildlife of the Earth hopefully more, and more people will find an interest, and appreciation of our wildlife. Which means that hopefully they will add their voices about concerns of wha'ts happening to the wildlife of our planet

WS

_________________
If I can make somebody smile, my day has been worthwhile
avatar
whitestarling
Admin

Posts : 12826
Join date : 2009-12-26
Age : 72
Location : North Wales

http://wildaboutanimals.forumotion.net

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Safariman on Thu Mar 19, 2015 3:44 pm

Time for some elephant photos and a video.
The elephants of the Mara and the surrounding conservancies travel far and wide in their search for food and it is always a hit and miss scenario whether you see them or not, it just depends on the available food supply. My guides told me that prior to my arrival in mid January they had not seen any elephants in the conservancy since before Christmas.
Fortunately the recent rains had produced plenty of new grass and the Acacia were starting to sprout so there was plenty of fresh food available in the Conservancy. From my experience it appears that when there is a plentiful food supply the elephants will often come together in big herds and when there is a dearth they will disperse into their small family units.On this trip I was lucky enough to see a herd of about 30/40 which makes a very impressive sight. There were also lots of lone male bulls wandering their territories in search of females as well as food. It is always great fun to get the chance to watch the elephant families going about there everyday business particularly the young ones who like lion cubs always seem to playing and testing each other for dominance.

I have just heard that a black rhino has been spotted in the Mara North Conservancy by the Offbeat guides. Which is great news as rhino have not been seen there for a very long time. I just hope he manages to evade the poachers!!




A lone bull trying out his new dance steps!!



A small family of elephant pass a group of zebras enjoying the shade of a tree.



The elephant and the warthog!!



A female and calf stripping bark off an Acacia tree. Sadly the result is often the demise of the Acacia!!



Part of the big herd that I saw.



Two young bulls testing their strength



The lion and the elephant. The lion was totally oblivious to to the herd of elephants close by!!



Some more bark stripping by a hungry youngster



One of several huge bulls wandering the Mara



You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours!!



A curious young bull who tried to break off the aerial on the front of our vehicle!!




SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:50 pm

http://i70.servimg.c  A Black rhino in Mara North - now that is surely worth celebrating and and I hope he/she stays safe.  Wonderful news Safariman, thanks for sharing.

Your clip is lovely, as are the individual photos, you really get a feel for what is going on amongst the herd whilst they are going about their daily routine.  Sadly the Acacia trees do suffer as you say! I love the lion sleeping completely oblivious to the ele and also the babies in the background with the zebra in the shade.  I still can't believe how green it was.

A great collection for a Friday afternoon, thanks Safariman.

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  whitestarling on Sun Mar 22, 2015 12:20 am

Great to hear the news of the Black Rhino SM, fingers X for its survival. A couple of really huge Bulls on those photos, they really are magnificent creatures, and it must be so nice to watch them, and the Elephant families especially the younf ones they can be so entertaining to see them play. Wow that young Bull was a bit close, and a lovely video of the Elephants
Thanks SM

_________________
If I can make somebody smile, my day has been worthwhile
avatar
whitestarling
Admin

Posts : 12826
Join date : 2009-12-26
Age : 72
Location : North Wales

http://wildaboutanimals.forumotion.net

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Safariman on Sun Mar 22, 2015 10:35 am

Thanks guys.Pleased you enjoyed the pics and videos, I think I have only a couple more posts to do and then that is it until the next time!!
If the black rhino was on its own then I am not sure if it was male or female but obviously it will need more than one to ensure a future for black rhinos in the area. I know there is a small protected rhino sanctuary in the conservancy so it could have been looking for a mate!!

SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Birds of the Mara

Post  Safariman on Tue Mar 31, 2015 11:43 am

Some photos and a short video of a few of the birds I encountered on my recent trip. I was slightly surprised at the reduced numbers of birds that I saw, particularly as it was January and you expect to see lots of migrants. There seemed to be very few raptors apart from a lot the tawny eagles which are resident in the area. I don't know if the unpredictability of the weather  especially variability of the rains has anything to do with it.



Adult Bateleur



Juvenile Bateleur



Kori Bustard



A pair of Lilac-breasted Rollers



Tawny eagles



The tiny Malachite kingfisher



Secretary bird



Grey crowned-crane



African fish eagle



Grey-backed shrike



Black-chested snake eagle



Male Common ostrich



SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Wed Apr 01, 2015 2:15 pm

http://i73.servimg.c Safariman, I loved the clip with all the different birds, really beautiful and lovely to see them all. Funny you saying you saw less in the Mara, as we saw so many further north. Perhaps it was the weather as you said.

Great photos of a lovely collection of birds, thanks for sharing.

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Just Lions

Post  Safariman on Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:26 pm

Thanks Lai , pleased you enjoyed it.
As mentioned previously this trip was dominated by lions and their cubs and this post is about the "other" lions that did not make it into my other posts. All these photos and the video are of the lions I saw the Mara North Conservancy, mainly the Offbeat and Acacia Prides. There were however 2 sightings that were of particular significance for me. One was of 4 of the Offbeat juveniles who were about 18 months old at the time of my visit. There were originally 5 and I had followed them since they were about 10 weeks old but sadly one disappeared presumably killed and the remaining 4 left the pride when the 2 new males took over. They appear to have set up their own small territory on the edge of the Offbeat Pride area but well away from the main pride. It is quite an isolated area and we were lucky to find them as it is an area rarely visited and with no roads. There are 3 males and a female. Although they were quite a long distance away, too far for any decent photos, but they can be just seen in the video, they seemed to be in good health and managing to hunt for themselves. If they manage to survive the 3 males will probably set up their own coalition and eventually try and take over another pride and the female hopefully would then try and re-intergrate with the main Offbeat Pride.
The second sighting was of what we called the"Outcast" female and her 3 cubs. She had been pushed out of the main Acacia Pride and was bringing the cubs up on her own. The cubs were born about a couple of weeks after the Offbeat cubs and therefore slightly younger. Again I have been able to follow them from a very early age. The cubs, 2 male and a female look very healthy and the males are almost as big as mum. I think it is fantastic that she has managed to rear 3 cubs entirely on her own almost to adulthood, who will soon be capable of looking after themselves.



The 2 Offbeat Pride males who took over the pride last September



A pregnant Offbeat Pride female with a young impala that she had pinched from the jackal looking on behind her!! This was right in front of camp.



The "Outcast" female (on the far right) with 2 of her cubs, the third was relaxing on a termite mound just behind



One of the Offbeat males in the early morning sunshine



2 of the 23 Acacia Pride cubs. These were about 2 months old.



Acacia Pride female and her 2 cubs



Acacia Pride male having a bad hair day!!



Acacia Pride female and cub



Offbeat Pride male



Acacia Pride cubs enjoying a drink



Time for a snooze!!



Napono the Offbeat Pride matriarch





SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:07 am

Hi Safariman - I'll catch up with this thead later today, I don't want to miss out but am in huge haste just now Very Happy

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Last Post!!

Post  Safariman on Fri Apr 17, 2015 3:32 pm

This will be my last post on this particular thread and concerns the wildlife that I haven't shown on the previous posts. They are the animals (with one exception) that never quite manage to make a post on their own but without them no safari is complete; they form the background or the bit parts to the big cats and ellies etc. Sadly they often go un-noticed or simply passed by as not glamorous enough to compete with the "iconic" species.
The one exception are the leopards who have not featured in any of my other posts. On this trip they were hard to find and I only had a few brief sightings with very few photo opportunities. One leopard who I had come across before, who we called the"Runner" due to the fact that whenever we see him he takes off at great speed, did make a couple of brief appearances. On one occasion he decided to charge our vehicle for no apparent reason however immediately David started the engine he came to an abrupt halt. There is a rather shaky clip of this on the video at the end of the post. The video is a generic film of the whole trip with some clips that I have already included in the other posted videos but it gives a feel of what a safari is like and also highlights the marvellous Mara North Conservancy.
Fortunately it is now only 8 weeks before I return to Kenya and meet up with all my friends again!!



An "old fashioned" 1920s sepia look to the Offbeat Mara Camp where I stayed



Sunrise over the Mara



The Runner on one of the few occasions when he kept still!



A member of the "Little Five", a leopard tortoise



A hippo on the Mara River pretending to be Kermit the Frog!!



A buffalo bull tries to shake off a pair of yellow-billed oxpeckers as a cattle egret looks on



A male baboon



A male eland with attendant oxpeckers



A spotted hyena with her two very young pups



A crocodile on the Mara River basks in the early morning sunshine



Wildebeest, the calves were only a few minutes old and had been born while we having a picnic breakfast a short distance away



A male tree Agama lizard



Grazing zebras



Jackson's Hartebeest



A giraffe pays a visit to my tent at the Offbeat Mara Camp



A large herd of impala



Open wide, a hippo and oxpecker, Mara River



A male leopard relaxes amongst the rocks above Leopard Gorge



The sight that greeted me most mornings as I left my tent at the start of a new day!!



SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Tue Apr 21, 2015 8:22 am

You the man Safariman. Going back to the post before which I have now caught up with and apologies for taking so long. An absolutely superb set of photos, stories and a really wonderful clip. You've certainly really mastered the video bit now! The music was amazing and I just can't remember what it is which is embarassing scratch

Mara North has such a magnificent amount of lions and it's great that you've been able to watch them expand and keep tabs on them all. Lucky you going back in 8 weeks

I so agree about all the other wildlife, I love to see everything and anything, large or small and that's what makes the safari. Whilst I admit leopards are my all time favourite for sure I just as much enjoy everything else.

Your other photos are lovely and show just what a safari is all about. Thanks so much for sharing. I'm going to watch the clip now

ps love the kermit hippo and the sepia camp, (and all your photos really).

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Safariman on Tue Apr 21, 2015 2:28 pm

Thanks Lai.
The music to "Just Lions" was Sarabande by Handel and the music to "Safari 2015" was Shebeleza by a South African band headed by Joe Mafela.

I am becoming more and more torn between still and video but I still think still has the edge. It is the ability to capture that single moment in time that is utterly unique and can never be repeated which I think appeals to me. Video is fun and with modern cameras the quality is outstanding and it is also now so easy to switch between the two mediums by just pressing a button on the camera. I am also becoming more familiar and confident with the video editing process although it can still be very frustrating at times.
What I have been doing is putting the videos onto DVDs which allows them to kept at their full size and quality and greatly improves the final result. The problem with putting them on YouTube and Facebook etc. is having to reduce the quality to make it easier and quicker to upload them. Sadly the better quality now available on most digital cameras means the file sizes get bigger and bigger. I even find it a problem sometimes with stills trying to upload them to WAA because of the file size. I think I will have to upgrade my broadband!!

SM
avatar
Safariman

Posts : 518
Join date : 2012-06-27
Age : 73
Location : Buckinghamshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Laikipia on Wed Apr 22, 2015 7:05 pm

Aha Handel, thanks Safariman Very Happy I also really enjoyed the SA music too.

I agree about stills and video, I am really a photo person who is happy to try a few videos but honestly I have enough confusion in my head with learning how to use my camera properly without adding the video bit Laughing I agree about Youtube and the quality. Sometimes I look at a slideshow I've put together and think that's awful the quality is so poor and you know you've taken a decent photo!

We are still awaiting Fibreoptic here which is due spring, but which spring? probably not 2015 - it is so frustrating as our speed is like a http://heathersanima

Anyway, I really enjoy your clips and appreciate the time it takes you to put them together and upload to WAA.

Lai
avatar
Laikipia
Moderator

Posts : 16153
Join date : 2010-05-13
Age : 57
Location : Cheshire

Back to top Go down

Re: Mara Jan.2015

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 2 of 2 Previous  1, 2

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum