Posts Tagged ‘animals’

Read HERE more about South Africa’s wildlife and also about the Rock Jumper!
The Klipspringer (‘rock jumper’ in Afrikaans) is a small African antelope that lives from the Cape of Good Hope all the way up East Africa and into Ethiopia.

Reaching approximately 58cm at the shoulder, klipspringers are relatively small animals compared to some of their larger antelope cousins. Males have fragile horns that are usually about 20-25cm long. With a thick and dense speckled patterened coat of an almost olive shade, klipspringers blend in well with the rock outcrops on which they can usually be found.

Klipspringers are herbivores, eating rock plants. They never need to drink, since the succulents they subsist on provide them with enough water to survive.

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This is what Nicky looked like. I’ve found this photo on the internet as our photos of Nicky and Lompie are packed away.

She was a cat found at a nursery. It was a rainy day in Centurion. I wanted to get some plants for a big clay pot in my class. I walked into the nursery. While looking around in the section where they kept all sorts of pots and stands with seeds, I heard a cat mewing. It was a soft, fainted mew and I couldn’t make out where it was coming from. I kept on looking around, but saw nothing. There were tons of shelves, covered in hessian with stuff on display. I starting lifting up the hessian, near where I heard the cat. There she was! A very young kitty with a plate of milk. I couldn’t resist stroking her and picked her up immediately. There was a man serving customers – with a wheelbarrow busy doing all sorts of odd things. Stroking this beautiful little kitty, I walked to him and asked him whose cat it was.”Nobody’s,  I only feed her while she’s around.” I pleaded to have her and he agreed as it was nobody’s cat anyway.

That day was my lucky day! I locked her in my car and ran back to get the plants. I couldn’t get my plants fast enough and to get back to the car. I got back to the car and there, very pleased with herself, she was waiting on the back seat, looking me very thankfully in the eyes through the window. I still remember those large green eyes, head a bit tilted sideways. When I got into the car, it was only a loud purrrr-purrrr I could hear and I knew she was happy. She looked at me as if she has been mine for years.

Nicky loved water! It was funny. I found her on a rainy day and she loved water so much, she liked it if you poured it all over her. She  would then look over her shoulder and just say…”purr-mew”…as  if she was asking for more! I used to have a small red watering can and when I had it with me, she came to me as if she was asking to have water running down her spine. When I poured the water down her spine, she would then wriggle her body and, “purr-mew”, to show how she enjoyed it.

She was friends, big friends, with Lompie. Lompie was the Blue Lilac-point Siamese! They were like kids – crazy kids, chasing one another up and down the flat – and later in the house [when we moved into a house] and around the garden, looking a bit silly most of the times, making us laugh when they were doing it. Lompie would start to chase and then suddenly turned around and then Nicky would chase Lompie. Completely two ‘silly’ children. We had great fun with them and could sit in the garden looking at them playing ‘hide-and-seek’ with one another, hiding behind plants, or going up a tree. It was as if they enjoyed entertaining us and knew how we enjoyed them. Their tails were swishing from side to side when they were taking position, when playing. It was funny. 

The following pictures were found on the internet. I was looking for pictures that portray her personality the best.

Nicky used to get into the basin quite often and loved it when you open the tap slightly to drink some water from the tap. I think she enjoyed the coolness of it too.

She loved to wriggle on the carpet, also when they played, she was always the one on her back, defending herself from Lompie.

Nicky was curious, very curious and I know we have a similar photo of her which we took in our garden, almost this very same position, looking at ‘something’.

In our flat, we also had a beam like this! [behind the front door]. She loved to walk on it, sometimes she was ‘hiding’ there when she heard us coming up the stairs [from outside] and when we opened the door, she would “purr-mew”, as if she couldn’t help herself saying, “hello, here I am!”  or maybe it was her way of saying, “wha! got you!”

Very strange but this photo IS Nicky!! 100% Nicky! Found on dreamstime.com, but this is SO, SO Nicky! 500%!

This is typical what Nicky was like, at times. Lazy-looking, self-content expression on her face. 

Enjoy this cat-poem.

 Cat in the window

What do you see?
Cloud, wind, birds,a bird in a tree.

The daffodils shivering the February breeze,
A puddle in the road beginning to freeze.

Snow on the wind
Dusk in a cloud.
Leaves in a frenzy,
The bird’s head cowed.
Winter – though the sun shines.
Blizzard, and the north wind’s whine.

~~~Brian Morse

A book I used to have!

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Kingfishers are beautiful birds – one of my favourites. Click HERE to see more about birdwatching and other activities in South Africa! This bird is one of the beautiful birds of South Africa!


Image: besgroup.talfrynature.com

Image: Telegraph.co.uk
Above image also 
to be seen here. The link will open in a new window. 

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The king of the jungle doesn’t frighten the lion whisperer.

Animal behaviourist Kevin Richardson has such an intimate bond with big cats that he can spend the night curled up with them without the slightest fear of attack.
Richardson, 32, who is based in a wildlife conservation area near Johannesburg in South Africa, works his unusual magic on other species too. Cheetahs, leopards and even unpredictable hyenas hold no threats for him.
So instinctively in tune is he with these beasts, whose teeth are sharp enough to bite through thick steel, that mother hyenas even allow him to hold their newborn cubs without pouncing to the rescue.
But lions are his favourite. He lavishes them with unconditional love, he says, treating each individual differently, speaking to them, caressing them and, above all, treating them with respect.
A former student of human physiology who once worked with pre and post-operative human patients, Kevin turned to animals ten years ago when he came to the conclusion that he could trust a lion over one of his own kind every time – well, nearly every time.
A close encounter with an aggressive four-year-old male in the early days taught him a lesson he has not forgotten. The animal pinned him to the ground and started biting him until something about Kevin’s passive attitude stopped him in his tracks.
Kevin says he is most confident with animals he has known since birth, but claims he can become close friends with any lion less than a year old, when it is still flexible enough to accept him as part of its own pride.

I have to rely on my own instincts to gauge an animal or a situation, and I will not approach a creature if something doesn’t feel right, he says. I don’t use sticks, whips or chains, just patience. It may be dangerous, but this is a passion for me, not a job.

Read and see more pictures HERE ….– links will open in a new window.

Another “lion”-site…

Lion swims with Kevin!

This next news report is about White Lions in South Africa, the only White Lions in the world that live in the wild without anyone feeding them. The link will open in a new window and it’s in Afrikaans only. These white Lions are from the Sanbona Wild Reserve in the Klein Karoo – Little Karoo…this is their link which will open in a new window.



“White Lions king of the jungle”

Wit Leeus kraai koning

Met net sowat 300 witleeus wat wêreldwyd nog voorkom, is die Witleeu-projek in die Sanbona-wildreservaat in die Klein-Karoo ‘n suksesverhaal wat ook vir ‘n wêreld-eerste gesorg het.

Die witleeus wat op dié reservaat van 54 000 ha tussen Montagu en Barrydale voorkom, is die enigstes ter wêreld wat nie in aanhouding is nie en self vir hul kos jag.

Die oorspronklike witleeus het in Timbavati, ‘n private natuurreservaat teenaan die Krugerwildtuin, voorgekom, maar is daar verwyder.

Witleeus is nie albino’s nie. Dit is ‘n eiesoortige en baie skaars leeuspesie wat draers van wit gene is en dus ‘n kleurvariasie van die gewone bruin leeu is.

Die eerste witleeus – ‘n mannetjie en ‘n wyfie – is in 2003 in die reservaat losgelaat om die eerste selfonderhoudende witleeus te wees sedert dié spesie in die 1970’s uit die Timbavati-gebied verwyder is.

Die leeus het saam met gewone bruin leeus geleef om sodoende te leer jag. Hoewel die twee witleeus gereeld ‘n bok platgetrek het, is hul vermoëns onderdruk deur hul vroeëre kontak met mense.

Die broeipaar is uit die veld onttrek en in ‘n kleiner kamp aangehou. Hul drie welpies is in 2006 saam met bruin leeus vrygelaat. Ná enkele weke het die leeus as ‘n trop gefunksioneer.

In 2007 is nóg drie welpies van die oorspronklike paar – een mannetjie en twee wyfies – gebore en dadelik in die reservaat vrygelaat met so min moontlik menslike kontak.

Die langtermyndoel van dié projek, wat sover R35 miljoen kos, is om ‘n hele trop van wit- en bruin leeus te vestig.

Volgens mnr. Andrew Slater, wildbewaarder van Sanbona, dra hulle geen kennis van enige witleeus wat die afgelope 30 jaar wild in die veld gebore is en oorleef het nie.

” ‘n Leeu het ongeveer 7 kg vleis per dag nodig, en met die 5 000 diere op Sanbona behoort hulle darem nie honger te ly nie,” sê hy.

Die witleeus in die reservaat dra almal bande met ‘n opsporingstoestel om die nek. “Dis sodat ons kan weet die diere beweeg rond en dat hulle gesondheid nie verswak nie,” sê Slater.
For those people constantly thinking I have Lions on my blog mating…here is now a link for you guys!! I get it often that people get directed to my blog via a search with search terms like: “lions mating” or “lions having sex”…hahaha..now you have a link to follow! I don’t know why they’ve thought I’ve had that info here, I was getting tired for those searches..ok, help yourself now and see how they do it in nature! The link will open in a new window.



Drakenstein Lion Park, South Africa
Copyright © Dries Cronje


African Lion …click on the images for a larger view. Image: Wikipedia


Lion cubs playing : Wikipedia

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Huberta’s Journey…..

Ek’s gek oor hierdie Seekoei-verhaal. Die storieboek is ook in Afrikaans verkrygbaar en maak seker jy kry hom in die hande, want ek dink hy gaan dalk uit druk gaan oor ‘n paar jaar. Ek weet net ek was baie gelukkig om hom in Afrikaans te kon kry! Maar Engels is ook seker net so goed, solank jy hom kry! Hierdie boek verleen hom ook tot die gebruik in Kuns! en kinders kan hul eie lekker seekoei-stories skryf na hul Huberta s’n gehoor het! Op een van die links hieronder kan jy ook lees oor ander bekende seekoeie. Geniet die Buffalocity-link, want daar is oulike inligting oor Huberta! en die museum ook!

  Huberta: the wandering star of the Eastern Cape

One of King William’s Town’s most famous residents is Huberta the hippo. In November 1928, for reasons known only to herself, Huberta began a long trek from St Lucia in Zululand to the Eastern Cape. For three years, she took a 1 600km wandering path southwards and her adventures captured the imagination of the nation and the world.
Huberta was not shy of strangers – she crossed roads and railroads and visited towns and cities. She ate her way through parks, gardens and farms and trampled over golf courses. Wherever she went, there followed journalists, photographers, hunters – and the interest of thousands of people. She became quite famous and her story appeared in South Africa’s newspapers, as well as international publications such as Punch and the Chicago Tribune.

The press, thinking she was a male hippo, nicknamed her Hubert. Later, when it was discovered that Hubert was in fact a female, she was renamed Huberta.

During her journey through what was then Natal (now called KwaZulu-Natal), Huberta settled in the lagoon at the mouth of the Mhlanga River. She seemed to enjoy her new home, and visitors would throw fruit, sugar cane and other titbits to her.

A decision was made to move Huberta to the Johannesburg Zoo and a team set out to capture her. However, Huberta evaded capture in a classic comic-book scenario: journalists fell into mud pools in their efforts to interview her and she chased photographers up trees. But, as her status grew, the Natal Provincial Council decided to declare her royal game and it became illegal to catch or hunt her.

Once her idyllic life in the pool had been disturbed, she continued to travel southwards. She walked on to one of Durban’s beaches, and amused holidaymakers when she swam in the sea and sauntered along the beach. She trampled over the elite Beachwood Golf Course and arrived uninvited to a party at the Durban Country Club, ambling along the veranda as partygoers danced.

She went from there to the Umgeni River. She reached mythical status, with Zulus allegedly convinced that she had some connection to King Shaka because of the time she had spent in one of his former sacred pools. Xhosas honoured her as the spirit of a great chief who had returned to the world to seek justice for his people.  Read on this link more!

Update: January 2014: The first two links are broken, these links were my original sources. The 3rd and 4th links are new links for you to read about Huberta.

1. http://www.buffalocity.gov.za/visitors/huberta.stm

2. http://www.keiskammafriends.com/articles/huberta_garson.htm

3. http://www.museum.za.net/index.php/14-fp-roktabs/31-huberta-the-world-s-most-famous-hippo

4. http://eng.hrosi.org/?id=91

Famous Hippos

Book: Huberta the Hiking Hippo

by: Daphne Cox

Picture book for children age: 5-8/9

OOS-KAAP: Swerwer-seekoei kry ’n opvolger
29/05/2008 10:09:01 PM – (SA)

PORT ELIZABETH. – Is dit blote toeval of is daar nou na 80 jaar nóg ’n seekoei met jeukerige voete?

Huberta, die bekende swerwer-seekoei, het in 1928 al wat leef en beef aan die klets gehad toe sy haar “huis” in St. Lucia in KwaZulu-Natal verlaat het en die pad Oos-Kaap toe aangepak het.
Dit blyk dat die seekoei wat vandeesweek op Ballito se strand in Durban gewaar is moontlik in haar vrye voetspore wil volg. Nie net het albei seekoeie se stories in KwaZulu-Natal begin nie, maar dit lyk of al twee ’n liefde vir die branders het. Luidens talle nuusberigte oor Huberta het die media in daardie tyd ook van haar vrye voete te hore gekom en haar eers Hubert gedoop. Dit het egter later aan die lig gekom dat die hy eintlik ’n sy was. Van toe af is sy sommer Huberta genoem. Luidens die Buffalo City-webwerf het haar pad – van sowat 1 600 km – met dié van baie Suid-Afrikaners gekruis. Sy het glo vir ’n wyle in die Mhlangarivier in KwaZulu-Natal gebly, maar toe is daar besluit om haar te vang en na die Johannesburg-dieretuin te neem. Dié planne het haar glo nie beïndruk nie en sy het uit haar vangers se kloue geglip en weer die pad gevat. Volgens die webwerf het die provinsiale regering toe besluit om dit onwettig te maak om Huberta te vang of te jag. Net soos die seekoei op Ballito se strand het Huberta ook ’n besoek aan een van Durban se strande afgelê en sonsoekers daar met oop monde gelaat. Volgens mnr. Garnett Cantor, ­eienaar van die Kraggakamma-wildpark in die Baai, is dit nie ­eienaardig vir seekoeie om in seewater te beland nie.

In 1931 het Huberta die Oos-Kaap bereik, maar dis ook hier waar haar epiese reis en lewe tot ’n einde gekom het. Sy is deur ’n groep jagters by die Keiskammarivier geskiet. Vandag is haar opgestopte seekoeilyf in die Amathole-museum in King William’s Town te sien. Volgens Cantor is swerwer-seekoeie nie ’n vreemde verskynsel nie. “Veral bulle – omdat hulle baie territoriaal is – word partykeer uit hul groepe geskop. Dan vat hulle die pad.” Hy waarsku hoewel Huberta se storie mense betower het, moet dit mense nie blind maak vir die feit dat seekoeie gevaarlik is nie.
Bron: Die Burger


Image: Wikimedia

Hippo-Skull..image: Wikimedia

Die Suid-Afrikaanse boek — wat in Engels geskryf is wat ek onder hande gehad het, se titel is “Huberta’s Journey”…volg hierdie link ook daaroor!
Cecily van Straten is die outeur…volgens hierdie link.

Image: dinosoria.com/mammifere/sens-huberta

Image: Everypicture.com

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The Suni is the smallest antelope in SA! About 37 cm in height!

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