The Safari Begins

Keekorok Travel Blog

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Elephants signaling 'Back off'

Our first morning game drive was rewarding. A family of bush elephants feeding on green trees and foliage included several adults, adolescents and infants, one of which stood only three feet tall. Ed nudged the Landrover ever closer - in reverse. He killed the engine at about fifty yards and we all got out. As we fanned out on foot the herd tightened to collectively shield the youngest. Adolescents mimicked adults by swinging their head and trunk from side to side and spreading their ears; all ritual movements in an attempt to intimidate us. But we continued closer. The bulls heaved their trunks overhead, tossing dusty earth into the air. When the master bull finally trumpeted we knew it was time to stop our advance and we eased our way back to the Landrover.

Lion cubs
 

Nearby we approached a black rhino with a youngster. Ed cut the engine and we watched in silence as the prehistoric monsters eyed us back. Besides the odors of diesel fuel and exhaust fumes from our clumsy arrival, scents of food, soap, tobacco, and clothing stirred their interest. They approached to within fifty feet of the Rover before retreating from the clamorous barrage of our camera shutters.

Further along we found four lion cubs and their adopted mother. The maternal lioness lay nearby slowly dying from a neck wound suffered during a kill attempt gone bad. It was difficult to imagine the innocent-looking cubs growing up to be the same deadly predator that their mother once was. In the cool of morning and late afternoon, just about every open field and every hillside revealed wildlife on the move. By mid-day they laid low, waiting out the intense dry heat in the cover of shade. We retreated then too, to our camp to make lunch, relax, and study the animals we had seen in Ed's book 'A Field Guide to the Larger Mammals of Africa'.

rotorhead85 says:
Thanks, joehobo, that's the fascinating thing about the African bush - it's timeless!
Posted on: Jul 31, 2013
joehobo says:
Even though it was way back in the eighties it still is interesting....:)
Posted on: May 25, 2013
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Elephants signaling Back off
Elephants signaling 'Back off'
Lion cubs
Lion cubs
Black rhino
Black rhino
Rhino
Rhino
Keekorok
photo by: wipr