26 November 2014


This was one of those moments in photography that you dream of.....getting this close to a Bateleur. We disturbed him while he was on the ground at Melkvlei in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park and followed him to a tree where he had settled.

After taking a number of photos from various distances before  he was frightened off, we were eventually parked under the tree with him peering down at us through the sunroof.

These are truly magnificent birds.

20 November 2014

Skywatch Friday - Kgalagadi Sky

Springbok silhouetted against the early morning sky in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park.

Visit Skywatch for more great pictures from around the world.

16 November 2014

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park - an amazing wilderness

Suzie and I have just fulfilled a lifelong dream to visit the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. 

Nothing can prepare one for the experience of the place. It is a harsh and unforgiving part of the country, with little water a baking sun, strong winds and sand storms. But there is a sureal beauty to the place, with the red sand dunes and the dry river beds - the Aoub River apparently only flows every eleven years, and the Nossob River every fifty years.

Yet in spite of its harshness many animals thrive here. 

This gemsbok is walking along the Aoub River against the backdrop of one of the many red dunes.

25 October 2014

Airshow time again

Fly by at the Port Elizabeth airshow. A Mango Airlines Boeing 737 800 and the Silver Falcons team in their Pilatus PC-7 Turbo-Trainers 

23 October 2014

Skywatch Friday - Climax on a mountain

If you are not South African the title may have mislead you.................... 

Climax is the brand name of  a windmill, which is a common feature on the South African landscape and the name is often used as a synonym for windmill. It was also the inspiration for the name of the book my wife and I have just published, which has been promoted quite extensively in some of the earlier posts. 

This battered windmill, perched near the top of the Zuurberg Pass, in the Eastern Cape has the most spectacular panoramic views of the rolling countryside from Paterson to Port Elizabeth and beyond, with Algoa Bay as a backdrop. 

If you have never been to the top of the Zuurberg Pass, put it on your bucket list. The road is not the best, to put it mildly, but the views are breathtaking and worth the trip. On a misty day you may not see too much, but then just enjoy the atmosphere.

Visit the Skywatch site for more wonderful pictures from all over the world.

17 October 2014

Skywatch Friday - A gloomy day at Addo

Who in their right mind goes to a game reserve on a wet and gloomy morning, when the rain is falling?

Me for one, plus a whole lot of other wildlife enthusiasts - some even in an open game viewing vehicle. In an interaction with the field guide afterwards, I was told it was quite miserable being in an open vehicle in the rain and wind, but I am sure they all rewarded themselves with a hot shower afterwards.

One thing about a gloomy day though, is that it does give you atmospheric shots.

For more Skywatch pictures from around the world please visit the Skywatch site.

15 October 2014

The Climax Collection: Give-away

The climax of a dream come true.

Well the books arrived from the printers on Monday and I suppose we will not be eating at the dining room table until we have managed to sell a few. This is what a 1,000 books look like, when all neatly packaged.

The Climax Collection is a book of windmill photos, with captions reflecting our own wacky brand of humour. The pictures were gathered while travelling over thousands of miles around South Africa and there was much hilarity as Sue and I hit upon many of the captions, when we saw the opportunities.

According the Africa, this is why I live here Facebook page, it is "The most 'naughty but nice' truly South African keepsake book you could ever wish to find."

To promote the book we are giving away two copies this week, in two separate competitions:

Competition 1 on Africa, this is why I live here, ends tomorrow but if you are quick, there is still time to enter. All it requires is for you to 1. LIKE The Climax Collection's Facebook page.
2. LIKE the post on the Africa page and 3. SHARE the post.

Competition 2 on the The Climax Collection's Facebook page gives you the opportunity to join in the fun by adding your caption to the featured windmill photo. Pop over our site to enter.

11 October 2014

Red-necked Spurfowl

Since the birding specialists decided to harmonize the names of birds around the world, I along with many other mortals, have had to adapt to the new names. It's not that I resist change, but let's face it, the new names very often do not have a good ring to them.

Take this Red-necked Spurfowl for example - it used to be called the Red-necked Francolin and I still think of them as Francolin. My grandfather called them pheasants and so did I for many years, until I adapted to Francolin.

I suppose those massive spurs on its legs give credence to its new name and so I will just have to adapt.