An outstanding drive in the park…They’re baaaack!!!!…Two days and counting…

Mom and baby love.

“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”

We continue to take nighttime photos of the bushbabies on the stand eating the little cups of yogurt to see how many we can capture. We counted seven here but not all of them is easily shown in the photo.

With few animals visiting since last Wednesday when the holidaymakers started arriving for the long weekend, yesterday we were determined to be able to take plenty of photos to share over the next few days until we get to Zambia and Botswana.

We had few expectations even commenting to one another that with all the commotion in Marloth Park we’d see few animals within the park but might have safari luck looking across the fence to the Crocodile River in Kruger.  How wrong we were!

There were no less than 12 zebras in the dazzle, many of which included youngsters.

Sure, we saw plenty of wildlife on the river but that’s always from such a distance that the photos don’t always come out as good as we’d like. We’ll share those photos over the next few days until we depart on Thursday for Zambia, after which we’ll have plenty of new photos to share on our activities in both Zambia and Botswana.

After driving for about 15 minutes and taking a series of ostrich photos, yes on Volstruis Road (which means ostrich in Afrikaans) and a few surrounding roads, Tom spotted some giraffes and zebras on a side street.

Baby zebras always seem a little dazed and confused, sticking close to their moms.

Today, we’re sharing the zebra photos, and tomorrow we’ll post the giraffe photos that include a story that was quite entertaining. Please check back for those photos.

As for the dazzle of zebras, we couldn’t have been more dazzled. In researching the definition of the word “dazzle” from Merriam Webster dictionary, we noted the following: 
a. To shine brightly;
b. To arouse admiration by an impressive display.  

They were on a mission.  We couldn’t tell what motivated them to stay on the move.

Hum…it’s no wonder a group of zebras is called a “dazzle.” They certainly arouse admiration by an impressive display! And that they did yesterday as we slowly drove up and down the road observing them on their apparent mission to an unknown destination.

We’ve noticed that when zebras come to call, they don’t stay long like many others. They eat their pellets, jockeying for position with one another for the closest advantage to the food, kick up their hooves a few times when being pushed out and then, are on their way.

The babies were able to keep up the pace.

Often warthogs, kudus, bushbucks, and others will lounge about the garden, some even laying down for a rest or a nap as we’ve shown in prior photos. But zebras? Nope, they move along. Perhaps with their larger weight than some others, they require more food.

From this site:“Males are slightly larger than the females, and they have a narrow black stripe running vertically between their hind legs. In females, this stripe is wider. Males grow to between 1.35 meters (53 inches) and 1.37 meters (54 inches) at the shoulder and their weight is between 290 kg (629 pounds) and 340 kg (750 pounds), while females weigh about 260 kg (573 pounds).”

They traveled in a long row making it impossible to take photos of the entire dazzle.

In any case, the sightings for the day were much more than we’d expected, and by the time we returned to the house, we were fulfilled and satisfied with the excellent day in the bush.

They stopped to drink from a cement pond.

However, once we set up the veranda for the evening, we didn’t expect many visitors. The holidaymakers were still leaving the park and sightings were sparse. We had a number of warthogs, one bushbuck, and one duiker stop by for a visit.

Stopping in the shade to cool off for a moment.

This morning, now that a day had passed, as usual, they started returning to see us.  At 6:30 am, we had several sounders of warthogs including “mom and five babies,” three bushbucks, “mom, baby, and friend,” no less than a dozen kudus including “Big Daddy and Little Daddy,” lots of guinea fowls, and unfortunately, way too many monkeys.  

Tom spent most of the morning chasing off the monkeys while I stayed busy preparing tonight’s dinner, doing laundry, packing a few more items, and sorting through zillions of photos for today’s post.

When it’s so much hotter in the summer months, we can only imagine how hot it is for wildlife especially when water is sparse.

At the moment we’re sitting indoors on the sofa while Josiah cleans the veranda (a daily necessity with all the blowing sand and leaves) while Martha is sweeping and washing the floors on the inside of the house (almost daily). We’re anxious to get back outside to see who may visit us today and tonight.  

They made their way through trees and vegetation in the gardens of homes along the way.

The pounding next door has stopped and for these next two days, we can relax and enjoy that which we’ve come to know and love…paradise in the bush.

Be well. Be happy.

Photo from one year ago today, August 14, 2017:

This is a variety of Bromeliad growing on the grounds of the villa in Costa Rica. For more photos of the exquisite landscaping, please click here.