Holiday makers arriving in the park starting today…Noisy weekend in the bush?…

Big Daddy is such a handsome animal.

We are located on the borders of Lionspruit, the wildlife conservancy within a wildlife conservancy. From our front yard or back garden, we cannot see another house. The only human noise we hear from time to time is the sound of children laughing while in a splash pool, which we can easily handle, the distant sound of a generator when the power is out and the occasional sound of trucks passing with supplies for a house being built in the area.

Other than those sounds, the only sounds we hear on a consistent basis is the blissful sounds of wildlife; whether its birds, mongoose making their chittering sounds, warthogs snorting and grunting, impalas barking like a dog, various chirping insects and frogs, the lion’s roar, and the difficult to describe occasional sounds made by kudus, zebra, and wildebeest. It’s all music to our ears.

Big Daddy posing for a photo.

One of our favorite sounds is made by Frank and The Misses, a loud bird call like none other, at sunrise and sunset, and occasionally during the day, and the gentle chirp when they happily eat their seeds and drink water from the little containers, both of which we refill several times a day.

Otherwise, the quiet is profound. No traffic sounds, no loud music, with no yelling and loud voices. When we lived at the Orange House in 2018/2019, the human sounds were deafening at times. We could easily see three or four-holiday homes from the garden and hear the rambunctious sounds of holidaymakers during the endless stream of holidays in South Africa.

Marloth Park has distinct rules, available to every visitor in regards to noise. This is a place to come to unwind, relax and revel in the wonders of nature and wildlife. Loud noise is prohibited and may result in steep fines. But, many tourists pay little attention to the rules.

He stood quietly for a few hours watching the action around him with many other animals in the garden.

Not only did we hear screaming, yelling, and “drunk talk” but loud music permeated the air. It wasn’t unusual to hear swearing and name-calling from that location. Here, nothing. At most, we’ll hear the children’s sounds and an occasional car driving past. This house is set back far from the road, making passing vehicle noises barely detectable.

Upcoming this weekend is yet another South Africa holiday, this time what is called a “school holiday” which may be found at this link. For the regular government holidays, please click here.

This upcoming school holiday, of course, meaning kids are out of school, impacts tourism in Marloth Park beginning on April 23 and continues until May 3 for a total of 10 days. It’s during these several long stretches throughout the year that Marloth Park is rife with tourists, with considerable fast driving on the paved road Olifant and all the dirt roads, which often results in the killing of many animals.

Big Daddy in the background with two females ready for more pellets.

As mentioned over Easter weekend, seven of our beloved animals were killed by hit-and-run drivers, some of which were killed instantly and others who had to be euthanized. Each time, we don’t see some of our favorites in the garden over a period of days, we end up wondering if they were one of the victims of these ruthless drivers, until once again they grace us with their presence, filling us with a sense of relief.

It’s highly likely we won’t see much wildlife during the 10-day period when often, they are hiding in the bush away from the commotion or being fed inappropriate foods that they, like humans, can’t help but like. During these periods, we seldom see many of our wildlife friends. In actuality, that has already begun when, this morning, we only saw a few warthogs, bushbucks, and of course, Frank and The Misses, who we’ll continue to see since Francolins are territorial and it’s highly unlikely they leave the property.

Also, beginning this weekend, it’s necessary to make an appointment to enter Kruger National Park. Visitors may use this site to book their appointments. Due to the crowds, there will be in Kruger, we won’t be visiting any time during the holiday period. Also, our usual drives in search of photo ops in Marloth Park will also cease during this period.

Young Mr. Bushbuck hoping for some pellets when the warthogs take over. We always find a way to get some to him and the other gentle bushbucks.

We’re hoping we’ll continue to have sufficient photos during the next 10 days for our daily posts. We’ll do our best to ensure we are able to post new photos. Fortunately, we have enough groceries and bags of pellets to avoid the necessity of driving to Komatipoort to shop, where it will also be very busy.

Oops, I spoke too soon! Nine kudus just arrived in the garden, including some youngsters and Big Daddy. A grouping of kudus like this is called a forkl. The camera is clicking non-stop!

Little, in the side garden, searching for any leftover pellets we’d tossed to the bushbucks.

May your days and nights be pleasant and fulfilling.

Photo from one year ago today, April 22, 2020:

A distant elephant across the Crocodile River. For more from the year-ago post, please click here.