Author Archives: de Wets Wild

About de Wets Wild

Nature and wildlife enthusiast, based in Pretoria, South Africa.

Going in search of rare antelope in Northern Kruger

The northern parts of the Kruger National Park harbours populations of antelope rarely seen in the wild elsewhere in South Africa, and of course the Wild de Wets just love going in search of these special creatures.  Our recent visit during the winter school holidays, basing ourselves for nine nights at Shingwedzi Rest Camp, yielded wonderful encounters with Eland, Nyala, Sharpe’s Grysbok and Tsessebe (and we’ll just have to get back there soon to find the roan antelope, sable antelope, lichtenstein’s hartebeest and reedbuck that eluded us!)

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Predator sightings in Northern Kruger

The northern parts of the Kruger National Park suffers from an inaccurate perception that predators there are fewer and harder to find, and consequently that part of the Park sees far fewer visitors than the area south of the Olifants River. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy – fewer people looking for predators means fewer people finding predators – that suited us just fine when we visited the area around Shingwedzi Rest Camp during the winter holidays. We returned home bragging about several splendid encounters with lions, leopards, spotted hyenas and both side-striped and black-backed jackals and hardly ever having to share the experience with other visitors. Please don’t let the secret out though – we’re only telling you! 😉

The lady that stops traffic

This lioness was using the bridge outside Lower Sabie in the Kruger National Park as her own personal catwalk, settling down to give her adoring fans some close up views of her beauty – and I was lucky to get a front-row seat!

But lions aren’t always such show-offs – sometimes they like to keep their distance, and other times they lie hidden in plain sight…

 

Painted Wolves on the move (and quickly!)

Coming across a pack of Painted Wolves, also known as African Wild Dogs, on the road to Skukuza was another special encounter from my solo visit to the Kruger National Park in May 2019. These animals are highly endangered – it is thought that fewer than 7,000 remain in the wild with the estimated 200 living in the Kruger National Park representing South Africa’s biggest population of the species. Seeing these energetic and attractive animals is therefore always thrilling!

 

Tiny Quarrels

Dwarf Mongooses live in close-knit clans, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t the occasional squabble between family members! While walking around Pretoriuskop Rest Camp on a recent visit to the south of the Kruger National Park, I spied two of the tiny tykes continuously working on each other’s nerves, until eventually and inevitably the fight escalated into blows.

Francolin Families

We were really surprised at all the Swainson’s and Natal Spurfowl (both formerly known as francolins) families with tiny chicks that we encountered during our recent visits to the Kruger National Park in May and June, supposedly well into our austral winter (and dry) season.

Love Bites

Well, apparently, if your a Striped Skink love should bite if you’re doing it right! This couple was having their honeymoon right outside my vehicle in the parking area at Lower Sabie Rest Camp in the Kruger National Park, but then headed for the privacy of a crevice in the concrete when the scene was threatening to turn too steamy…