LIONS and LEOPARDS of KRUGER photo safari trip report - September 2017
Posted by Wild4 Photo Safaris on 2nd Oct 2017
Our second Lions & Leopards of Kruger trip again took us to three very different, but all photo productive places, Ngala, Kruger National Park and Mala Mala, all in South Africa,
Some of the highlights we managed to photograph, were a massive Bull Elephant with wonderful tusks in the Timbavati River, fantastic bird life, a young female Leopard in the Kruger National Park, excellent Elephant, Zebra, Giraffe, Impala and African Elephant sightings at all locations, two different packs of Cape Hunting Dogs and an amazing sighting involving the large 26 strong Lower Sabi Pride, chasing a Warthog, catching it and then having to endure the wrath of a huge herd of African Buffalo. Finally the Lions returned to their Warthog meal after the Buffalo left.
As usual Mala Mala offered amazing sightings, starting off with the Senegal Bush Male Leopard who had killed another Impala, the Teardrop Female Leopard and her two cubs, as well as the Tamboti Female Leopard and the Island female Leopard who managed to finally catch some food, a small baby Scrub Hare. We also saw one male Cheetah and the Kambula pride of Lions which we photographed at night.
On our final morning we again bumped into the Island female Leopard, this time with an Impala kill in a Marula tree, only 100 meters from the boom gate !
Many thanks to all the lodge staff that looked after us at each location and also to our rangers, Bernhard at Ngala and Theo at Mala Mala, thank you for your hard work and patience and for getting us into sightings and spending quality photographic time with the animals. Thanks also to the Wild4 back up team who looked after us so well in the Kruger National Park.
Finally, thank you to the participants, Rita, Veeda and Dick, it was great travelling with you all and I think the Warthog kill in the Kruger National Park was one of mother nature's best..
Enjoy some of the photos below.
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This was the second trip I have booked through Wild4 and one of the most memorable and pleasurable trips I have ever been on in my life. We were blessed with incredible sightings from a frenzy of feeding wild dog to mating black mambas. The list is endless and the memories will linger for ever in the form of some great images shot from the customised vehicles driven by expert drivers. The camps chosen were great and there was a real and genuine feeling of being a part of your surroundings. A truly African experience. Botswana certainly came up trumps when delivering us such great sightings. From the bush to the Chobe river and the specially adapted photographic boats, you could not have asked for more. I must extend an enormous thank you to you Stu, for your endless patience and professionalism in everything you did for us. Thank you. Also a big thank you to Justyna who’s meticulous planning ensured a seamless trip to and in between each of our camps and destinations. Good job!
Stephen Tattersall, UK
On arrival we were treated as part of the family by Stu Porter, his wife Justyna, and parents John and Ann. The conditions for finding and photographing everything from small birds to large game was perfect – a 500mm lens on hire from Stu, a specially equipped vehicle, which was referred to as a hide on wheels ( with only 3 photographers) , a dedicated and professional approach to photography and plenty of time. We would set off at sunrise, find a group of lions as they were beginning to yawn and stir from sleep, or a pair of saddle-billed storks building a nest, and quietly move our cameras into position. The initial sighting was accompanied by the rapid firing of shutters, but then we would wait as long as necessary in the hope of getting further shots. Stu was very sensitive to our needs and would only make suggestions about the best camera settings if he thought we needed his advice. His awareness of how animals behave was very useful in planning our shots. Stu’s knowledge of African Wildlife and skill as a wildlife photographer is second to none, and I have learned a lot from his expertise. I am delighted with my photos !! This was the trip of a lifetime, good accommodation, delicious food and great company. It was altogether a wonderful, challenging and thrilling experience and, if you are looking for a photo safari in Africa, I too recommend you contact Stu Porter at Wild4.
David Austwick, UK