Leopard

We went to Pilanesberg to spot some leopards, and actually we were quite successful. We saw a young male enjoying his catch about three meters from our car. Under a dense bush. Then there was a female with her catch – behind a tree. And then, the top of our sightings, a female with cub. In a very leafy tree, 30 meters away.

After three days we had seen spots, tails and whiskers, but little more than that. So when we arrived in Madikwe, we told our guide that we really would love to see a leopard with a complete body not hidden by bushes.

And we got what we came for! Leopards are not as often seen in Madikwe as in Pilanesberg, but we were lucky that this male had killed an impala two nights before and was still working his way through the carcass. He even deigned to look our way! Happy!

Baby elephant

A small baby elephant drinks together with his family at a waterhole in Madikwe Game Reserve in South Africa. Together, the family will protect the youngest elephants by standing around them so that no harm can befall them. Around this baby you can see the feet and trunks of his family members.

Sterkfontein caves

40% of all fossil finds of hominids come from a relatively small area 60kms from where we live. It has become known as the Cradle of Humankind. Today we visited the Sterkfontein Cave in this region. Under an unassuming hill we found an impressive network of deep and roomy caves. At the end of the 19th century, these caves were mined for limestone. This limestone, made into quicklime, was used in the goldmines on the Witwatersrand. In the 1930s, the first Australopithicus (literally Southern Apeman) were found. The excavations continue until this day, and up until now some 500 hominids have been found. The hominids did not use the caves to live in. The most complete skeleton seems to have been from a boy who fell into the caves through a crack – but I’ve not been able to find whether all of them came into the caves in this way…

Weaver birds

When we were living in the Netherlands, we loved to go to the zoo and watch the weaver birds making their nests. Now that we live in Africa, it’s a blessing to see these birds in our garden! This picture, however, was taken in the National Zoological Gardens in Pretoria, South Africa – we still love going to the zoo.