This volume records the birds and animals seen during two photographic safaris in South Africa undertaken in November/December 2013 and February 2015.
The first trip started in Johannesburg with a transfer on the first day to Wakkerstroom in Mpumalanga Province to visit the wetland reserve there. During the two days spent in Wakkerstroom the weather was consistently overcast with persistent rain. The next location was Mkhuzi Game Reserve in KwaZulu-Natal Province where improved weather conditions provided far better photographic opportunities for both birds and large animals. Relocation to St Lucia and Cape Vidal allowed a visit to iSimangaliso Wetland Park, followed by a brief stay in Eshowe to visit Dlinza Forest which brought the party to Durban for a flight to Cape Town.
In Cape Town a pelagic tour had been planned but exceptionally high winds resulted in cancellation of this trip which was replaced by a day in West Coast National Park followed by visits to Rooi-Els and Betty’s Baai to see the penguin colony. The next destination was Beaufort West in the Great Karoo with a brief stop en route in Paarl Mountain Reserve. Surprisingly there was also heavy rain in the Karoo during our stay.
The last part of the tour followed the Garden Route along the east coast, starting in Wilderness (Wilderness National Park) and thence to Nature’s Valley (Keurbooms River Nature Reserve and Tsitsikamma National Park) finally to Port Elizabeth (Cape Recife) where the trip terminated.
The second visit to South Africa again started in Johannesburg but on this occasion was immediately followed by a flight to Upington in the Kalahari, Northern Cape province, and a drive from there to Twee Rivieren Restcamp in Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. A subsequent transfer took us further into the park to Nossob Restcamp before a return to Twee Rivieren and then via Upington to Cape Town by air. From Simonstown on the outskirts of Cape Town a pelagic trip took us by boat about 45 km south of the Cape of Good Hope to observe a number of species of albatross and other pelagic birds and mammals. While in Cape Town a second visit to Rooi-Els was undertaken to try to find the Cape rockjumper but again without success. The next destination on the tour was Dullstroom in Mpumalanga province as a stopping point on the way to Kruger National Park. Four different lodges were visited in Kruger, Skukuza, Lower Sabie, Satara and Letaba. The route back to Johannesburg for departure took in three further stopping points Magoebaskloof, Polokwane Game Reserve and finally Rust de Winter, all in Limpopo province.