SafariSpy: Mission one…

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SafariSpy: Mission one

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Print directions Kev and his wife Emma were the first volunteers to take the new SafariSpy camera trap out for a spin. In January, they visited a small but perfectly formed nature reserve in the Limpopo province of northern South Africa. After learning how to use the trap and testing everything was working by cycling back and forwards in front of it, they looked for footprints and a used path before setting the camera trap up… Here is what they found… Firstly, some insects disturbed the camera trap by dancing in the night air… Then a grey duiker (Sylvicapra grimmia) popped its head up. Duiker is an Afrikaans word and means ‘bush diver’, as they tend to dive into thick bush when threatened. Duikers are found across Africa, with four species found in southern Africa. The grey duiker is unique as it is found in savannahs and grasslands in addition to forests. The females also do not have horns (so we know this one is a male!). Duikers are very small antelopes, only 50cm tall at the shoulder and are active at all times of the day. Finally, a tsessebe (Damaliscus lunatus) wandered past along the road. Unfortunately the camera triggered just a little too late – but still in time to give us a glimpse. Tsessebes are large antelopes (110cm at the shoulder) and feed on short grasses. They have a similar sloping back to the wildebeest, which makes them look less elegant but allows them to run up to 70kmh. Tsessebes are found across most of Africa and are known for their habit of standing on top of termite mounds! Kev and Emma loved using the camera trap and have promised to take it again, having learnt some important early lessons. Their favourite sighting of the weekend were red-billed quelea (the world’s most numerous wild bird) flying in flocks, and Kev took this wonderful photo… Red billed quelea


Stay tuned for more SafariSpy adventures, with the next outing already planned…!