Wild4 African Photographic Safaris

Wild4 African Photographic Safaris

Authentic small group photo tours to South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana and Namibia

Etosha & Secrets of the Kalahari photo safari trip report 1 - August 2017

Posted by Wild4 Photo Safaris on 14th Aug 2017

We are pleased to release this photo trip report from our very first "Etosha and Secrets of the Kalahari" photo safari.

The main aim of this trip was to spend time in two of Africa's dry environments, namely Etosha National Park in Namibia and the Kalahari in South Africa where a variety of very different species manage to eke out a living for themselves. Along with a number species seen in the other wildlife hotspots of Africa, such as Greater Kudu, Zebra, Ostrich, Elephants, Lions, Blue Wildebeest, Giraffe, Black Backed Jackal, Spotted Hyaena and African Wilddog, these dry environments offer a fantastic collection of less commonly photographed animals. We were very fortunate to see the Damara DikDik, Black faced Impala, Gemsbok (Oryx), Red Hartebeest, Springbok, Tsessebe, Roan Antelope, Sable Antelope, Bat Eared fox, Cape Fox, Black Rhino, Meerkats, Hartman's Mountain Zebra and the endangered Pangolin.

The dry winter season is the perfect time to do this trip as the days are mild and the nights are cold. Animals are thirsty and are dependant on visiting waterholes where the predators often hide and wait.

We spent 6 nights at Etosha National Park visiting a number of very productive waterholes and were treated to a number of sightings of large Elephant herds, Black Rhinos and Lions. There was a staggering amount of general game around which included Zebra, Blue Wildebeest, Oryx, Springbok, Impala and Giraffe.

Our next stop on the tour was a 5 night stay at Tswalu Kalahari Reserve in South Africa. Each Game drive at Tswalu produced a quality sighting, starting with a pack of African Wilddogs with 5 small pupies at their densite. We also followed a female Cheetah with her two small cubs, spent two sessions at two different habituated Meerkat groups (a real highlight), we had a morning with a beautiful Black Rhino and calf, we tracked down two large Male Lions and the North pride, had two evening sessions with the endangered Pangolin and a final morning drive with three predators, the Wilddogs, two Cheetah brothers and a group of Lions.

The tour was a great success and we certainly achieved our goals of photographing the animals of Etosha in the dry season and we discovered many secrets in the Kalahari !

Thanks so much to Usko, our guide in Namibia, and the Ultimate Safaris team, it was a great pleasure working with this great guide and company again, and also thanks so much to Fireblade Aviation and the extremely helpful and friendly team at Tswalu Motse for taking amazing care of us during our 5 night stay in the Kalahari. Extra special thanks also to our great photographic guide, Kosie and tracker, Jackson ! 

Finally thanks so much to Paul, Pierre and Martin for joining us on this first ever trip to Etosha and Tswalu, it was a great pleasure travelling with you all and experiencing the magic of these two special environments packed with unique species

Enjoy some of the photos from the tour,

Kind regards

Stu

Oryx reflection at sunset, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Oryx reflection at sunset, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Springbok drinking at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Springbok drinking at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Gemsbok (Oryx) , Etosha National Park, Namibia
Gemsbok (Oryx) , Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra drinking, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra drinking, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Sunset at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Sunset at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Herd of Elephants arriving at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Herd of Elephants arriving at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephant, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephant, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Animals at the waterhole at night, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Animals at the waterhole at night, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Lions at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Lions at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Moon and waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Moon and waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Greater Kestrel, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Greater Kestrel, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Blue Wildebeest, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Blue Wildebeest, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephant Bull reaching for branches, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephant Bull reaching for branches, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Gemsbok (Oryx) , Etosha National Park, Namibia
Gemsbok (Oryx) , Etosha National Park, Namibia
Group of thirsty Ostriches, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Group of thirsty Ostriches, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephant herd on their way to water, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephant herd on their way to water, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephants playing, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Two male Lions at Ombika waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Two male Lions at Ombika waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Greater Kudu, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Greater Kudu, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephants, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephants, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Red Hartebeest, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Red Hartebeest, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Large Bull Elephant, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Large Bull Elephant, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Ostrich Chich, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Ostrich Chich, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Gemsbok (Oryx) , Etosha National Park, Namibia
Gemsbok (Oryx) , Etosha National Park, Namibia
Female Springbok, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Female Springbok, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephants approaching the water in the late afternoon, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephants approaching the water in the late afternoon, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephants at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Elephants at Okaukuejo waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Black Rhino and Cattle Egrets, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Black Rhino and Cattle Egrets, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Black Rhino Calf and large Bull, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Black Rhino Calf and large Bull, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Springbok drinking at night, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Springbok drinking at night, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Pale Chanting Goshawk, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Pale Chanting Goshawk, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Ostriches, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Ostriches, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Springbok at the edge of the Etosha Pan
Springbok at the edge of the Etosha Pan
Blue Wildebeest, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Blue Wildebeest, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephant, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Young Elephant, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Red Billed Quelea, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Red Billed Quelea, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Giraffe approaching Chudob waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Giraffe approaching Chudob waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Sunset, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Sunset, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra drinking at Onguma Tented Camp waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Zebra drinking at Onguma Tented Camp waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Spotted Hyaena, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Spotted Hyaena, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Damara Dik Dik, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Damara Dik Dik, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Spotted Hyaena swimming, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Spotted Hyaena swimming, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Waterhole at Onguma Tented Camp, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Waterhole at Onguma Tented Camp, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Sunrise, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Sunrise, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Mating pair of Lions, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Mating pair of Lions, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Juvenile Gabar Goshawk with Sandgrouse, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Juvenile Gabar Goshawk with Sandgrouse, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Male Elephant swimming at Chudob waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Male Elephant swimming at Chudob waterhole, Etosha National Park, Namibia
Moon rising at GocheGanas near Windhoek
Moon rising at GocheGanas near Windhoek
Herd of Eland in the Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Herd of Eland in the Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Giraffe, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Giraffe, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
African Wilddog on the hunt, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
African Wilddog on the hunt, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
African Wilddog Puppies, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
African Wilddog Puppies, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Backlit Meerkats, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Backlit Meerkats, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Meerkat, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Meerkat, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Meerkats, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Meerkats, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Meerkats warming themselves in the morning sun, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Meerkats warming themselves in the morning sun, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Cheetah female and cub, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Cheetah female and cub, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Cheetah Cub in tree, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Cheetah Cub in tree, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Yellow Billed Hornbill, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Yellow Billed Hornbill, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Male Lion, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Male Lion, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Male Lion, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Male Lion, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Male greater Kudu with one horn, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Male greater Kudu with one horn, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Roan Antelope, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Roan Antelope, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Sable Antelope, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Sable Antelope, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Burchell's Sandgrouse, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Burchell's Sandgrouse, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Blue WildebeestTswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Blue WildebeestTswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
The Korannaberge, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
The Korannaberge, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Bat Eared Fox, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Bat Eared Fox, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Pangolin at Sunset, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Pangolin at Sunset, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Pangolin, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Pangolin, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Tsessebe, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Tsessebe, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Red Hartebeest, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Red Hartebeest, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Morning breakfast break, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Morning breakfast break, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Crowned Lapwing, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Crowned Lapwing, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Hartman's Mountain Zebra, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Hartman's Mountain Zebra, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Two Cheetah brothers, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa
Two Cheetah brothers, Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, South Africa

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2 Comments

  • Excellent photos

    Ulhas Mayekar - August 16th, 2017 at 4:45pm

  • Super, as expected from Stu.

    Mansur Ahmad - August 27th, 2017 at 10:58pm

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Testimonials Dear Justyna and Stu We had a wonderful time on the photo safari. It was a unique experience, not like anything else we’ve done even though we have travelled to many parts of the world over the last 30 years. It was a thrill to see such a variety of animals and birds and also to see many of them in such large numbers. There can’t be anything better than seeing them in the relatively relaxed setting that Kruger National Park provides. We appreciated all the effort that went into the equipment and the logistics for the safari. The vehicle with the bean bags and panning plates was excellent for taking photographs and for enabling us to be close to the animals while staying safe. The catering was great. We enjoyed our breakfasts and lunches and coffee out on the road. We were comfortable in the accommodation at the Satara and Lower Sabie camps. As I mentioned in an email, the Meet & Greet at Johannesburg Airport was perfect after such a long journey from the USA. The flights to and from Skusuza went without a hitch. We really enjoyed meeting and getting to know Mike Lentz. Eleven days together provides a lot of time to talk. He is a great guy. We were very impressed with his knowledge of the animals, birds, and plants in Kruger National Park. His descriptions of animal behavior and other information added immensely to our enjoyment of the safari. We also appreciated his efforts to ensure we had a total Kruger Park experience, birds, trees, plants, landscapes as well as the animals. Looking forward to returning on another trip in the future. Best regards,

Jennifer & Jerry Monopolis, USA

Testimonials I would like to express my thanks to you for your excellent tuition on my recent photographic safari. During the course of a few days, you lifted my photographic skills to greater heights by introducing me to additional techniques and making me work with my camera to achieve extremely pleasing results. I must also compliment you on the organisation of the trip, the logistics were seamless, the food and staff excellent and without exception, every game drive provided great animal encounters, allowing us to put into practice our new found skills. Once again, many, many thanks for a wonderful trip. Sincerely,

Neil Stewart, UK