CUSTOM Photo Safari - MALA MALA & Kruger Park, South Africa - September 2015
Posted by Wild4 Photo Safaris on 15th Sep 2015
Here are a few photos from a recent custom photographic safari to Mala Mala and Kruger National Park in South Africa.
The weather was rather unusual for this time of year and we had to deal with a number of rainy days. This was magic for the bush and the wildlife, but not too much fun with camera equipment !!
Some highlights were seeing a very newly born baby Elephant with its herd in the Sand River at Mala Mala. Such a tiny version of the adult, but new borns can still weigh in at close to 100 kgs !!
We followed a very hungry looking Airstrip Male Leopard who eventually lay down and observed a distant herd of Impalas.
The daughter of the Kikelezi female Leopard tried to stak in on two Klipspringers who spotted her and let out their very unusual whistle like alarm call.
We spent quite a lot of time with the two "Clarendon" Male Lions, both were resting in the cool wet weather. One morning we found one of the males on a Wildebeest Kill with a young Lioness watching at a safe distance.
The "Treehouse" Male Leopard was spotted close to the West Street Bridge, he had an Impala kill in a tree.
The Marthly pride were spead out in the Sand River in front of Main Camp. We photographed two of the females in the early evening as they rested in the river bed.
We headed to the southern parts of the reserve and on our way we found an unknown female Leopard stalking some Impala. A Kudu spotted her and sounded its characteristic "Bark" alarm call which ended her hunt.
We then watched the Charleston Lioness and her two small cubs cross the Sand River to the South.
Our final day provided some good photos of a herd of elephants walking in single file towards us, and we also spent some time with a Lioness who had a young male with her.
We entered Kruger National Park through Paul Kruger Gate and headed first to Satara Camp in central Kruger. On one of our drives we found the remains of an Elephant Carcass that was smothered in Vultures. All species were in attendance except for the White Headed Vulture.
Kruger provided a lot of general game sightings, Giraffe, Zebra, Impala, Waterbuck and a lot of Kudu. We also briefly saw a Leopard and a special sighting for me was to see a Red Crested Korhaan in display, this was the frst time I had seen the famous "RED CREST" !!
Thank you to Jonno, our ranger at Mala Mala and the staff who took such great care of us.
Thanks also to David and Bridget for coming on yet another photo safari with us !
Enjoy some of the photos:
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This was simply an outstanding photographic safari all round – by far the best that I have been on! As a keen enthusiast photographer, looking to step up a level with view to entering 2 competitions later in the year, I could not have hoped for more. Excellent ! The family based Wild4 team is personable and friendly and went the extra mile all the way through. They are very well organized and their prompt and helpful responses to queries pre-trip ensured they were easy and a pleasure to deal with. Stu Porter can pitch his photographic tuition at any level and his attention to detail and enthusiasm was spot on throughout this trip. I was surprised by just how much I learn’t because I was quite comfortable with my photo technique on arrival. I have easily adopted his full-on manual approach, every bit of which he was able to justify - a revelation! I am quite picky, but I cannot praise these guys enough and I will be back. Very many thanks to the whole team.
I did a photo safari in and around Kruger National Park with Wild4. At the end of the trip I could not think of one significant thing that I would have changed to make the experience better. I have travelled to various parts of East and Southern Africa many times to photograph wildlife and I have to say that this was THE most photographically productive trip of them all. Not simply the volume of pictures, but the quality and variety of images that I returned home with was simply awesome. Key to this was Stu’s knowledge, enthusiasm and patience. Most days we were photographing from first light until sunset, and beyond on some occasions. I quickly learned not to worry about getting the vehicle into the best position for background, light, etc. We would see an animal and I'd start to assess where I would like to be for a shot, no sooner would I have done this I would realise that Stu was already getting us into that very position. The man is a first class guide AND an excellent photographer. Perfect. The whole trip, from start to finish, ran like clockwork. The camps were comfortable, the food was great and the company delightful. Going on Safari with Stu and Justyna was like being with friends, I had a truly unforgettable time. Photographic safaris do not come any better than this.
Mike Needham, UK