Diederik cuckoo

One of the beautiful cuckoos that are summer visitors to South Africa. Once the rains start, the calls of the cuckoos can be heard everywhere in the bush. This glorious green bird is called the Diederik cuckoo, because its name sounds like the Dutch/Afrikaans name Diederik: It calls “Die- die- diederik!” Unfortunately hearing cuckoos is much easier than actually seeing them, so I was very happy when this one perched on a branch for a moment.

Giraffe in black and white

Giraffes are cautious but curious animals. If you stop to watch them, they are likely to come closer and watch what strange thing is parked in front of them. I once saw a pair of giraffes move slowly towards a pride of lions, seemingly just to check them out…
Photo taken in Pilanesberg National Park

Kori bustard on the move

The Kori Bustard is a huge, almost prehistoric-looking bird. It’s the heaviest bird in Africa and possibly the world that still is able to fly. However, it spends most of its time on the ground, searching for lizards, insects, or even berries. The impala in the photo has nothing to fear from the kori bustard, although it did feel the need to watch it pass.

Klipspringer on the rocks

A klipspringer standing on a rocky outcrop in the fading evening light in Pilanesberg National Park. Finding a klipspringer is always a highlight of my gamedrives, they are one of our absolute favorite animals. This one seems to have a serious bad hair day – or possibly it escaped the claws of a predator, for example of one of the leopards that are regularly seen on these rocks. Go well, dear klipspringer!

Leopard after the kill

This leopard had just caught a big bushbuck in Pilanesberg. I’m not sure how that was even possible, I’ve never seen bushbuck there, and he just catches one! He was still panting heavily in the shade of a bush. His kill was lying a meter off, too heavy to be carried up a tree. Later, that night, a couple of lions chased the leopard away and feasted on his kill. Such hard work, and so little joy from it!