Text and images for this trip report were compiled by Andrew Beck.
Eager to catch up with the buffalo and lions from the night before the only thing that could dampen our spirits was the low cloud and heavy rain that seemed to have settled across the entire Okavango Delta. Click here to view all of the trip reports from this Duba Plains Photo Safari. Hoping for the best and staying positive we continued out in search of the herd despite the heavy rain. After finding the buffalo and spending close on two hours watching as the herd sat and ruminated in the downpour the group made a call to head back to camp to work on their Lightroom skills.
The heavy cloud eventually lifted, leaving a soft drizzle and overcast conditions shortly after mid day. Seeing the break in the rain we headed out to find the herd again a bit earlier than usual. Passing through one of the waterways we spotted a pair of Wattled Cranes and were able to capture a couple of images of these vulnerable birds. We also passed a herd of Elephant and a large bull which made for some interesting images given the colour of the sky in the background.
After picking up on the tracks of the buffalo herd eventually found the herd resting out in the open plains but something didn’t match. Tracks from earlier in the day had shown them moving in a very different direction from where they currently were. Heading back to where the tracks had originally headed we came across a sight which would stir both excitement and disappointment. The group of lions with the two young cubs had caught and killed two buffalo, one a large bull, and the other, a small calf.
The action couldn’t have happened too long before our arrival as the carcasses had hardly been touched apart from the calf, who had been disembowled. We sat and watched as a youngster and 2 cubs settled down for what must have been a hard earned meal. Photographing kills is always a tricky subject, as Gerry mentions in this blog post, so I encouraged the guys to think out of the box whilst photographing the scenes that played out before us.
With their bellies full the lions returned to their usual selves, resting in the open plain adjacent to their kill. We headed off in search of the group of six lions that had so far managed to elude us and, after a short while, we managed to find them resting in the open adjacent to a watercourse.
This group too were not up to much and as the little bit of available light dimmed even further we headed back to camp for dinner and good nights rest. Just before crossing the bridge back to camp we spotted a pair of Pygmy Geese, a species that I had always wanted to photograph! We rattled off a couple of frames before the shy birds made their escape.
With that, Day 3 came to an end…
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