|What could they possibly be waiting for?|
“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”
|Over the past few days, we’ve observed this pair of hornbills taking seeds from our birdfeeder and placing them inside this unoccupied bushbaby house. Could they be preparing a nest?|
Please note for visitors and residents of Marloth Park:
On Monday, when we embarked on our typical two-hour drive through Marloth Park in search of interesting and unusual sightings of wildlife, we stumbled across a very busy road, as mentioned in yesterday’s post
|The young giraffe had no interest in the activities of the others.|
Not only did we see a dozen or more zebras on a mission we also spotted no less than a dozen giraffes, also seeming to have a task in mind as they stared down the road for quite some time.
|The youngster scratching an itch.|
After watching the giraffes for 10 or 15 minutes, we decided to drive further down the dirt road to see if we could determine what they were looking for. As we drove several hundred meters toward the direction they were watching, we noticed another tower of giraffes heading their way.
|The young giraffe didn’t seem to be interested in what the others were waiting for and busily munched on the leaves of a tree.|
From this long-distance, they were well aware of the approaching giraffe. Was this to be a happy meeting or some type of mating conflict we’d heard so much about. Giraffes, when fighting for dominance will engage in necking can cause serious injury or death to one another.
Watch this NatGeo video to see what we’re describing here. After watching this video, we weren’t disappointed to discover these two towers of giraffes were meeting for some other unknown reason, perhaps as a family reuniting after a period of separation.
|The giraffes were intently staring down the road with some objective in mind.|
This was not unlike photos and a video we posted a few months of a mom and chick ostrich reunited with the dad who we spotted at a distance, walking proudly down the road toward his family. Once reunited, the baby and dad hung out in the bush together while the mom stood watch on the road. For that post, please click here.
When the two towers all came together, they didn’t congregate into one tight area. Instead, they seemed to acknowledge each other’s presence by entering each other’s space to begin grazing on what leaves were left on the trees in the area.
|On occasion, he’d stop to see what was going on, including checking us out.|
Giraffes have no competition when grazing other than other giraffes. No other animals eat the leaves on the treetops than these magnificent tall creatures. But even for them, in the dry winter months with little rain, their food sources become sparse as it is for other wildlife.
|Those to the right in this photo didn’t move a limb for a considerable period of time.|
Unfortunately, those of us in Marloth Park during the dry season can’t feed the giraffes. They don’t bend to eat, only to drink and they certainly don’t eat pellets or vegetables from being hand-fed by humans. They are totally on their own.
We weren’t able to get photos of them altogether since they were scattered throughout the feeding source. We watched for quite a while and then we were on our way satisfied over the two great sightings.
|Suddenly, they were on the move.|
From there, we continued on to the river with more photos we’ll share in tomorrow’s post which is a travel day. Although the flight from Nelspruit to Livingston, Zambia is less than two hours, it takes about seven hours from the time we leave the house until we arrive at the hotel in Livingstone. (The drive from Marloth Park to the Nelspruit/Mpumalanga airport is a little over one hour).
As for tomorrow’s post, we hope to get it uploaded before our 11:35 am flight. If it doesn’t work out, we complete the post once we arrive at the hotel, making posting time approximately six or seven hours later than usual.
|We turned off the little car’s engine to wait patiently while watching the two merged towers enjoy time together in the bush.|
We look forward to sharing many exciting photos during the upcoming week from both Zambia and Botswana.
Enjoy the day!
Photo from one year ago today, August 15, 2017:
|Check out those ears. They certainly were flicking back and forth when we stopped to say “hola!” while in Atenas, Costa Rica. For more photos, please click here.|