EmotionsofAfrica

Friendly Hippo Amazingly Joins Tourists For Favorite Snacks49s

Friendly Hippo Amazingly Joins Tourists For Favorite Snacks

The Hippopotamus is the world's third largest land mammal after the African Elephant and the White Rhinoceros. These semi-aquatic creatures are known to be aggressive, temperamental and very unpredictable. They are herbivores and very few people even know that the hippo is responsible for more human deaths in Africa than any other animal. Surprisingly enough, there is one very special and unique hippo on this planet called Jessica. She's a wild animal that interacts with humans in a very different way than what nature has intended. The video shows how the world's only friendly hippo joins her human visitors for a brief feeding session. Jessica lives free in an open river system that is connected with the Kruger National Park. Like a true hippo she will wander off with the rest of the wild hippos. Hippos leave the water at night for a few hours to graze. During the day hippos will be extremely placid and just laze around. Jessica on the other hand has some amusing daily activities. Every morning around ten o'clock Jessica will come down the river to the platform situated in front of the house belonging to the people that found her. She amazingly approaches the raft in a very friendly manner. The person in charge briefly explains to everyone how Jessica likes to be fed. From there everyone gets the bizarrely incredible opportunity to feed Jessica one of her favorite snacks. Crushed dried corn might not sound like much to us humans but this female hippo just loves it. Jessica adorably opens her mouth in such a willing manner every time she is ready for the next serving. During the year 2000, Jessica washed up on the river banks of a farm just outside the Kruger National Park, Limpopo Province, South Africa. That year the countries of Mozambique and South Africa suffered from devastating floods. She was a new born calf, still with the umbilical cord attached, that got swept away and lost her mother in the process. The owners of the farm took it upon them to save the helpless calf. Without a mother this female hippo stood no chance of survival. Over the years Jessica grown into a 600 kilo hippo that still comes from the wilderness back to the house of the owners that saved her life. A truly unique and fascinating story.

Baby elephant surprisingly takes big bite from mother's dung 1m17s

Baby elephant surprisingly takes big bite from mother's dung

While on Safari through the Kruger National Park in South Africa, we managed to locate a small herd of elephants. One particular baby elephant grabbed our attention with his odd behaviour. This particular little elephant strangely looked very fascinated with and interested in a pile of dung lying on the ground. The pile of dung was dropped by his mother less than a minute before. He was sniffing and smelling the dung and then proceeded to put small pieces in his mouth. It even gets better when he decides that he needs a bigger bite of the dung. Unexpectedly the baby elephant goes down on his knees, moves his trunk to the side and takes a big bite of the dung with his mouth. His reaction to the taste of the dung was very entertaining and humorous to watch. In the end the little one puts a stick in his mouth and chews on it. It seemed like he was trying to get rid of the taste in his mouth, or maybe he just needed a ‘toothpick’ after his strange meal. It may appear disgusting to humans, but the practice of eating dung, known as coprophagia, is common among some animal species but rarely witnessed by humans in the wild. Baby animals including elephant and hippo calves eat excretions from their mothers or fellow herd members when they're transitioning from drinking their mother's milk to eating solid foods. Devouring this excretion matter helps babies establish healthy bacterial communities in their guts, which in turn aids normal digestion. Taking a big bite of mommy’s dung not only adds necessary bacteria to his digestive system but at the same time the young animal manages to take in much needed extra nutrients. Elephants are hindgut fermenters putting all their food into a single stomach. The most digestible material is quickly absorbed while sixty percent of what was ingested are excreted. The expulsion of so much undigested material means that great amounts of nutrients are present in elephant dung.

Lion family's amusing efforts getting out of tree 1m18s

Lion family's amusing efforts getting out of tree

On a recent safari in the Kruger National Park, we came across a very unusual and rare sight. Three lions sitting in a tree close together. Lions are not known for their tree climbing abilities and climbing up and down trees is by far their weakest trait. Unlike the leopard, these big cats are not agile enough to climb trees with ease. The lion’s size and weight also counts against them. Finding this small family up in a tree turned out to be an unforgettable and amusing experience. The big lioness with her sub adult and 9 month old cub looked really uncomfortable up in that tree. Getting up into a tree is one thing but getting down again is a total different occasion. While commenting on the uncomfortable lions with their unsteady footing up in the tree, the sub adult lion suddenly loses his footing and falls out of the tree. Like a true cat, he lands right on all four his paws without any injury. It was as if the young lion heard the comment regarding his poor tree climbing abilities and instantaneously showed us how insecure he really was up in that tree. After the sub adult’s ungracious effort, it was the little cub to go next. Hesitant at first, the cub slowly and carefully starts his descend down the slippery tree trunk. He is determined to get down and with a combination of sliding and jumping, the adorable cub makes it down just fine. We felt relieved and amused at the same time. Once her offspring were safe on the ground, it was time for mommy to give it a go. At first she looks unsure about how she will go about getting down.This mother was definitely not going to jump like her youngster did. She rather assessed the situation patiently before making her decision. She finally gets herself into the fork of the tree and gracefully walks down, showing her young exactly how it should be done.

Cockapoo adamantly attempts to bury bone in blanket59s

Cockapoo adamantly attempts to bury bone in blanket

Meet Murphy, an adorable ten month old black Cockapoo filled with energy, love and friendliness. Murphy has an outgoing personality and is very intelligent at the same time. This normally leads to amusing behaviour and Murphy hardly ever fails to entertain. One of Murphy’s favourite activities is burying and hiding his treasures around the outside of the house. These treasures will range from bones to the majority of his toys. Never has Murphy attempted to bury anything inside the house. It was an early cool winters evening and Murphy’s owner Sarah, was sitting outside when she suddenly heard a noise coming from the lounge area. She immediately knew Murphy was busy with something and went inside to take a closer look. Sarah makes her way to the couch and finds Murphy adamantly attempting to bury his bone inside the brown blanket lying on the couch. The nights were getting colder and Sarah took out this brown blanket for the first time so she and Murphy could snuggle under the blanket while watching TV. Murphy had different plans for this newly discovered blanket. He is clearly fascinated by this brown blanket and sees it for a pile of soil or dirt. The bone is lying on top of the blanket in the corner of the couch. He proceeds to shovel the blanket with his nose, ploughing it forward just like a pile of dirt. Once he manages to cover the bone, his imaginary dirt would then just fall back like sand and uncover his bone all over again. Murphy starts again to shovel and pile his imaginary dirt onto the bone, only for the blanket to move back again to its original stretched position. This Cockapoo was determined to turn this challenge into a success. He continued adorably to bulldoze his newly found pile of “soil’. This made for amusing and entertaining viewing. At the end Sarah asks Murphy what he is doing. He responds with giving his bone one last lick. Looking a little shy, Murphy left his bone burying activities and moved outside for a well-deserved rest.

Baby elephant with stumpy tail scratches his bum 28s

Baby elephant with stumpy tail scratches his bum

While on safari in the Kruger National Park, we came across a herd of elephants. Suddenly a tiny baby elephant grabbed our attention. He stood in front of a bush, adorably scratching his bum with real intent. After this comical display, he moved away from the bush. We immediately realized that this was no ordinary baby elephant. He had a stumpy tail, with more than half his tail missing! We came to the conclusion that his tail was definitely bitten off by a predator. A horrifying experience that left this baby elephant scarred for the rest of his life and in extraordinary pain. Not to mention the emotional stress this poor little guy had to deal with. The first two years in the life of a baby elephant is the toughest. They are vulnerable to the many dangers and challenges lurking in the African bush. Their biggest threat are lion and hyena, especially at night. The wounds on the tail clearly show that this poor baby elephant was attacked and grabbed by the tail, which was then bitten off. His only saving grace was his mother and the rest of the herd. Since it takes 22 months for a calf to be born and the calving interval thereafter is at least 4 years, calves are family investments that are not easily replaced. The elephant’s tail can be as long as 1,3 meters and is tipped by a series of very coarse, wire like black hairs. They have an extraordinary degree of control over tail movement and use them as a fly swatter against biting flies and insects. This was the main reason for this baby elephant with his stumpy tail scratching his bum against a bush. After a good scratch, the little elephant quickly joined the herd again. As they move off into the bush we can clearly see how the rest of the elephants are using their tails to keep the insects away. This poor baby elephant will never again be able to swat these insects away. He will forever have to find an alternative way to get rid of the itch on his backside.

Tenacious baby elephant adamantly head-butts big brother46s

Tenacious baby elephant adamantly head-butts big brother

Dominance is largely a matter of seniority in the world of a male elephant. They learn their relative strength and status, within and between age classes, as they grow up, through frequent play fights. Dominance is usually determined and acknowledged the moment two bulls meet, simply on the basis of which stands taller. This video shows a feisty baby elephant who does not believe that size matters. The tough little guy takes on his bigger brother in a fearless manner during a play fight ritual. He shows real tenacity and determination, clearly not prepared to back off or surrender. He starts off with a courageous head-butt and confidently continues to wrestle his bigger brother. Young bulls spend time practicing head-butting to establish rank between themselves and to develop skills that they will use to win dominance later in life. The smaller baby elephant is ready for action and he does not look intimidated by his taller brother at all. He delivers the first head-butt with real confidence. He does not stop there and adamantly continues to charge his brother head first. He struggles to push his heavier brother backwards. The bigger male patiently stood there and entertained his baby brother's attempts. After every head-butt attempt he would just slightly push him back and allow him to try again. Suddenly the play fighting stops when mommy comes around and separates the two elephants. She slightly grabs the older one by his trunk and give him a little push so he can move away. While his bigger brother takes the brunt, the little male slowly moves on as if he had nothing to do with it. These encounters will continue throughout their lives until they are 40 years old. At this age males have established their individual ranks and there is no more need for fighting. This prevents older males risking injury or death.

King Of The Jungle Winces Like A Kitten When Stepping On A Thorn33s

King Of The Jungle Winces Like A Kitten When Stepping On A Thorn

The African male lion is the single greatest wildlife draw card on the continent. He is known as the king of the beasts and an apex predator. He rules supreme by virtue of his sheer physical strength and powerful enough to bring down prey up to three times his own size. With all of this in mind, it is really hard to imagine how anything could possibly stop him dead in his tracks. This video captures the unexpected moment when a big male lion surprisingly steps on a thorn. For a brief moment the king of the jungle was in real pain! His Royal Highness trots the savanna with all his glory, soaking up the afternoon sun. He is followed closely by a younger male member of the pride, both in no hurry to get anywhere. He doesn’t look to the ground, because he doesn’t have to - what member of royal blood would ever look down to the path he walks on to check for any imperfections that might hinder his magnificent stride? Just when we thought that the lion will simply pass us by, he steps on something that made him wince like the little kitten that he is deep down and we all felt his pain. He may be big and burly, but when a thorn pricks you in a soft spot, you too will jump with agony and surprise. The sensation throws him off his track and makes him look at his afflicted paw. Since he knows that something is down there that will make him hurt again, he steps to his right to avoid it. We wonder who will take the blame for the insolence!

Check Out Baby Elephant's Adorable Attempts To Get Out Of River34s

Check Out Baby Elephant's Adorable Attempts To Get Out Of River

Baby elephants make for very entertaining viewing most of the time. They are still very inexperienced and constantly struggle with their daily life challenges in an adorable way. This baby elephant faces one of those real obstacles of daily life in the African bush. After cooling down in the river with the rest of his family, he decides it is time to get out of the river and go to mommy. Climbing out of the river suddenly becomes a monumental task for this little elephant. During his first attempt, the young elephant repeatedly slips while trying to climb out the river using his knees. Just as it looks like he might make it, the young elephant helplessly slides down the muddy slope back into the water. This incredibly funny first attempt surprisingly gives the little one extra motivation and he takes on the same challenge for the second time. This time he is more determined and committed and gives it another go. At first it goes slippery and slow again but then suddenly it looks like he engages into four wheel drive. This whole time the mother elephant patiently stood and watched her young one. She moves closer as if she wants to help him. The baby elephant amazingly succeeds and makes it out of the river on his knees, without any physical help from his mother in the end. He finally gets on the top of the river bank, still on his knees. Quickly he jumps back up onto his feet and moves behind his mother with great relief. Everyone watching this sighting from a distance felt extremely proud of this baby elephant. This challenge was just one of the many struggles this brave little youngster will have to face on a daily basis. The lessons learned during these tough times will be vital for the survival of this baby elephant in a hostile and dangerous environment.

Giant lizard and two squirrels happily share tasty snack together 47s

Giant lizard and two squirrels happily share tasty snack together

Wilderness areas in Southern Africa are majority of the time extremely dry environments. Wildlife find themselves locked in a daily battle for survival, looking for food and water. On rare occasions, good rains come down and Mother Nature provides in abundance. These events bring about a total different behaviour in the majority of wildlife. Immediately after the rains, this giant plated lizard comes across an explosion of flying termites and instantly starts stuffing his face. Quickly he is joined by one and then two squirrels also making the most of this rare and tasty snack. This abundance in flying termites only occur after a good drenching summer rainfall. Termites reproduce by establishing new colonies and the vectors for this task are the winged reproductive castes called alates. The worker termites open special guarded entrances allowing the fertile alates to exit the mound in an event known as the ‘nuptial flight’. This happens only once a year for each colony. These alates are highly nutritious and rich in protein and surprisingly tasty. They provide a major food source to many creatures as well as humans. When deep fried in oil, they have a distinctive peanut butter taste to them. The giant plated lizard is the second largest lizard in Africa. They are predominantly carnivorous and very shy creatures. This healthy snack was more than enough to get this lizard out and into the open. Squirrels in the African wild are herbivores most of the time but they do not hesitate becoming little carnivores once an opportunity like this presents itself. In general, lizards and squirrels are never seen together or associated with one another in the wild. On this special day, all conventional behaviour disappeared and these two species had no problem with sharing this rare snack together. Both species rarely even look at one another. They were solely focussed on gorging themselves as quickly as possible.

Lone hyena relentlessly chases vultures away from kill54s

Lone hyena relentlessly chases vultures away from kill

Fighting a losing battle is most likely the first phrase that comes to mind when watching this video. It shows the frustrating and never-ending task of a lone hyena, trying to keep hundreds of vultures away from a giraffe carcass. Trying to enjoy his meal and warding off a mass of vultures at the same time seemed like an impossible task!

Couple keeping their cool during close encounter with dangerous bull elephant 1m11s

Couple keeping their cool during close encounter with dangerous bull elephant

Facing the largest land mammal on this planet, rushing towards you, is a nerve wrecking experience. My wife and I were alone on safari, admiring a small herd of elephants next to the road. Suddenly, there was this enormous bull elephant approaching us. He did not look like he was on a Sunday afternoon stroll. This guy looked determined and on a mission. Our hearts were racing while the elephant rushed towards us. There was a big branch hanging from his mouth and he looked pretty scary. We had no choice but to remain calm. He then moved a little off the road and bashed through a small tree next to the vehicle. He was showing us that he meant business. Suddenly he just froze, showing no emotion and not giving away any signals on what his next move might be. This was probably the most terrifying moment, sitting dead quiet and waiting on his next move. This bull elephant then pretended to be moving along and leaving us alone, but then approached us from behind for yet another anxious moment. Standing right behind the vehicle, he slowly peeked over the back. Simultaneously, he slightly bumped the back of the vehicle with his tusks. We managed to keep quiet through this whole experience but this was when we both raised our voices. From previous experience, we’ve learned that he would have carried on and become more violent if we did not say something. Immediately he stepped back, shook his head and left us alone. It turned out that this bull elephant was in a state called musth. When older male elephants are ready to mate, they go into a musth period with heightened testosterone levels. These males are extremely temperamental and dangerous at the same time. They chase, intimidate and sometimes even kill anything that does not look like a female elephant. We managed to keep our cool but at the same time were very lucky to get away without a serious incident.

Tiny antelope amazingly risks walking past sleeping lions 49s

Tiny antelope amazingly risks walking past sleeping lions

Unconventional events in nature have amused and confused mankind for centuries.This video is a great example of one of those mind boggling events that took place in the African wild. We came across two large male lions while on safari in the Kruger Park, South Africa. They were lazing around and occasionally falling asleep. While the big cats were dosing off, we noticed a tiny antelope called a steenbuck. He was busy feeding, directly opposite the lions, less than a hundred meters away. Clearly he hasn’t noticed the lions, or did he? As he kept moving closer, our hearts started beating faster by the minute. He carried on feeding towards the lions and eventually walked past them, a mere ten meters away! At this stage we were all very confused. Why would he risk his life walking past so close? Did he even see the biggest cats on the continent, lying right out in the open? How was it possible that the largest predator in Africa totally missed the opportunity for a quick snack? Lions are opportunistic hunters.They hunt anything from mice to elephants if the opportunity presents itself, even when they are not very hungry. A highly developed sense of smell and incredible hearing give these apex predators a big advantage over most of their prey. Steenbuck, the smallest antelope in the park, have remarkable eyesight along with big round ears for superior hearing. They are on the menu for most predators in the wild and need these senses to survive in the wild. Surprisingly enough, none of these common facts really came into play on this very day. It looked like the antelope had no clue the lions were there in the first place. At the same time the lions were probably so fast asleep, they never even heard the steenbuck walking past. In the end, all we really know for sure is that it was a good day for both animal species. The steenbuck lived to see another day and the lions enjoyed an uninterrupted sleep to regain some much needed energy.

Helpful bird eagerly styles zebra's mane36s

Helpful bird eagerly styles zebra's mane

This video was recorded in the Kruger National Park, South Africa. It shows the interesting interaction and friendship between a zebra and a bird. These birds are known as oxpeckers and share a very unique relationship with African mammals like the zebra. We noticed this juvenile oxpecker eagerly fiddling around on the mane of a zebra. It literally looked like the bird was working on the zebra's hairstyle. The bird even took a few steps back to have a better overall look at his work. He would then get back to providing his hair styling service and again went back a little to admire his styling work. Amazingly enough, the zebra was standing dead still the whole time and tolerated the bird that was busy all over his head and face. Even though they are two totally different species, these two animals are great friends in many ways and very helpful and caring to one another. The oxpecker works his beak through the mane of the zebra looking for food like ticks and parasites. While the bird enjoys a tasty meal, the zebra in return is saved from tick and parasite infestation. Infestation will normally lead to a loss of blood and energy at the same time. When mammals lose their condition they become the weakest links. In a hostile wilderness where the survival of the fittest really does matter, it is important to stay in top condition. At the same time his mane gets straightened out and the zebra maintains a clean and healthy look. This win-win relationship is known as mutualistic symbiosis. Both species involved gain several advantages from their relationship. We can happily confirm that after the oxpecker bird was done styling the zebra's mane, they both moved off, looking like very happy individuals. The zebra was looking in top condition and the bird left with a full tummy. Amazing to see how Mother Nature has a plan and reason for absolutely everything.

Jolly warthogs love their muddy bum scratch 41s

Jolly warthogs love their muddy bum scratch

The phrase ‘as happy as a pig in mud’ comes to mind while watching this video. I mean just look at them. Two warthogs scratching their bums in the mud after their mud bath. You can see they are just loving it and having so much fun at the same time. We came across these two warthogs covered in mud at a watering hole in Kruger Park, South Africa. The one hog got up and moved further away to find his own little patch of mud. Then the real funny part started. The one that stayed behind started rubbing his bum in the mud, backwards and forward. This made for some real entertaining viewing and we all had a good laugh. One could just imagine how much relief there must have been for this warthog with his itchy bum. It seemed like he just absolutely loved it. When we started looking around for the other one, we could not believe our eyes. In the distance, there was the other one busy with the exact the same thing. The only difference was that this one was rubbing and scratching his bum at a much faster and persistent pace. Clearly his bum was a whole lot more itchy than that of his friend on the other side. This rubbing and scratching of bums was typical warthog behaviour and every single time an absolute pleasure to watch and observe. Because warthogs have typically hairless bodies, they regularly take a mud bath. Wallowing in the mud help regulate their body temperature on hot days. The thermoregulatory ‘bath’ also aids in parasite removal. Warthogs are prone to rubbing themselves on any convenient place like a wooden post, rock or just in the mud. Ticks and parasites are encrusted by the mud and by rubbing and scratching their itchy body parts they get rid of it in that way.

Fun-loving wild dog kills his boredom by chewing his brother's leg 46s

Fun-loving wild dog kills his boredom by chewing his brother's leg

The African Wild dog is one of Africa's most endangered carnivores, second only to the Ethiopian wolf. Just to see Wild dogs on a safari in Africa is a rare occasion. Finding them with a whole lot of puppies is just priceless and really special. Wild dog puppies are extremely playful and make for entertaining viewing. This video shows exactly just that. We manage to locate a pack of Wild Dogs with nine pups. When we arrived it was hot already and they were all lying in the shade, sleeping. Well, almost all of them. There was one playful little pup that caught our attention. He wasn't tired and most likely he was bored. Then he found his brother's leg rather inviting and looked like something nice to chew on. This was such a comical behaviour. At first it was just a few nibbles but then he really started pulling and chewing the leg. The best of all is that the sleepy little brother hardly even woke up from all of this. Eventually he was half awake. He stretched, closed his eyes again and rested his hind legs on his busy brother's back. At the end, the playful puppy looked back, saw the other leg on top of him and had a go at that one too. This was really funny to watch as the playful puppy just could not resist the urge to bite and chew. This playing around and chewing on everything helps them to develop their muscles as well as the lifestyle skills they will require as adults. They grow up in an extremely hostile environment, filled with danger and many challenges. Every day, life in the African bush is about the survival of the fittest. So while they are young, they must play and chew as much as they can, because they will definitely need those skills to stay alive as adults. Enjoy the funny video of these brothers!

Adorable Hyena cub is amused by mommy’s ear 28s

Adorable Hyena cub is amused by mommy’s ear

The word hyena brings a rather scary picture to mind for most people. Blood thirsty and dangerous predators living off the left overs of other predators. That whole scary picture totally disappears when you look at them when they are only six weeks old. These little black fur balls are probably the cutest of all predator babies in the African wild. Hyena cubs are extremely curious little creatures. They will bite, lick and chew absolutely everything they can find. It is rather entertaining to watch these cubs. This little guy found his mother’s ear very amusing and was in a playful mood. He could not stop sniffing and licking her ear. He also started nibbling on it and at one stage he was comically shoving his nose down her ear to get a better sniff. Near the end, a second cub pops out the den to see what little brother was up to. Our hearts melted when both of them turned around and looked at the camera. The look on those little faces were just absolutely adorable. Poor mommy was out hunting and feeding the whole night. She was exhausted. She allowed them to carry on regardless. This is all part of the family bonding that is so crucial in the life of a hyena. From a young age these little cubs are given every opportunity to hone their skills and develop strong relationships within their clan. One day when they are big and a little scarier looking, these crucial little play times with mommy will come in handy and help them survive an extremely hostile environment. Hyenas are crucial to the eco system of the African bush. They are the ‘hoovers’ of the bush and literally keeps the bush clean. Without hyenas, the bush would be filled with rotten carcasses and leftover meat. That in turn would lead to a number of diseases that would be detrimental to all other wildlife in the wild.

Incredible number of Elephants on the move 1m45s

Incredible number of Elephants on the move

This video shows a huge herd of Elephants busy moving through the bush in Kruger Park, South Africa. This was not just your average size herd of elephants on the move. What really made this sighting special was the sheer number of elephants that was moving together in this herd. Usually on average, one would find herds of twenty up to fifty elephants moving together in a herd. This herd was estimated at over a hundred elephants at one stage. To see the largest land mammal on the planet congregating in such incredible numbers is really an amazing and wonderful site. During the early 17th century, there were still records of herds numbering up to a thousand. This sadly changed drastically over time and today the picture is very different. Just to try and find fifty elephants or more together in a herd can be a rather difficult task. Fortunate enough to have found this big herd, we decided to follow them and manage to meet up with them at various stages of their journey. When on the move, elephants walk roughly fifteen to twenty kilometres per hour. They can reach speeds of up to forty kilometres per hour when running. The herd is always lead by an experienced old cow, known as the matriarch. This is the female with the most experience and knowledge. We had to estimate their general movement direction the whole time and then look at the map to try and see where they would be heading next. In the end it became clear that this herd was in a hurry to get to the water. It was an extremely hot day and they were obviously hot and thirsty. We were extremely fortunate and overwhelmed at the same time to witness these unbelievable creatures moving together through the plains of Africa.

African jumping beans 19s

African jumping beans

This video shows one of the weirdest and strangest wonders in the African wild. At first glance, this might look like a magic trick or even camera trickery. Tiny little seeds lying on the ground, bouncing and jumping around on its own. This is no magic trick at all and the real reason for this is a rather interesting story. It all starts with a very interesting tree called the Tamboti. A medium sized deciduous tree found in the warm regions of Southern Africa. Majority of these trees are found in the Kruger National Park, South Africa. The Tamboti is notorious for its poisonous properties. It contains toxic latex that causes blistering, eye irritation and even death if ingested in quantity. Burning on campfires leads to diarrhoea and severe headaches, especially if meat is cooked on the coals. The fruit and seeds of the Tamboti is probably the most interesting part of this tree. The fruit looks like a three lobed capsule. In summer months when they ripen, these capsules bursts open with an audible clapping sound before dropping from the tree. Eventually the ground below the Tamboti will be covered by all the seeds bursting out of the fruits. By now the seeds are infested with the larvae of the knotthorn moth (Melanobasis). The movement of the larvae inside the seeds makes them jump, particularly when they lie in the sun. When you walk past these trees on a warm summer afternoon, one can clearly hear the soft snapping, crackling and popping sounds. Looking closer you will discover thousands of these seeds jumping around, hence the name ‘jumping beans’. The only other place in the world where one can see these jumping beans is in Mexico and better known as Mexican jumping beans. African jumping beans tend to move allot more erratic than their counterparts in Mexico.

Cute Baby Elephant Stumbles through river crossing 53s

Cute Baby Elephant Stumbles through river crossing

Watching baby elephants in the wild is most of the time a really entertaining and funny experience. One can also not help but to feel sorry for these little ones as they go through their daily struggles and challenges. These challenges are all part of the learning experience for an elephant and prepares them for life in the tough conditions of the African bush. Crossing a river with the rest of the herd is just one of those many challenges they have to face. Trying to find your footing and keep your head above the water at the same time can really get interesting and difficult. This video shows a baby elephant following the herd through a river crossing. As soon as they enter the water the fun really starts. From the beginning the little one finds it hard just to stay on his feet. Moving through the water in such a comical manner had everyone in laughter. The baby elephant was tripping, falling and stumbling along the whole way. At times he would fall face first into the water, getting back up to stumble forward again. At one stage the poor little thing tried to grab a hold of mommy’s tale but with no success. There were also no real help from the adults and the little one just had to push through and show some real determination. Closer to the end of the crossing, the baby elephant slips, but manages to hold his balance, only to fall down again. He got up again to finish off with one entertaining tumble and a big splash. Again he gets up and luckily for him that was also the end of the river crossing. He safely made his way up the bank and headed off with his family into the thick bush. This little elephant showed all of us what it really means to take on a challenge with persistence, dedication and determination.

Lions Hunt Down Buffalo and start eating it alive 2m24s

Lions Hunt Down Buffalo and start eating it alive

This video contains graphic footage that might upset sensitive viewers. In saying that, this is something that regularly happens in the African wild. It is just very rarely witnessed by humans. Most of the time Lions hunt under the cover of darkness or at dusk or dawn. This lion hunt was on the other hand, something very different and rare to see. In the middle of the day in broad daylight. This whole encounter took place in a remote Wilderness area of the Kruger National Park, South Africa. It was around 11:30 am and we found a pride of eight lions, lying flat on the sand in a riverbed. Lions usually do absolutely nothing during the heat of the day. The one distinctive factor on this day was a strong wind blowing the whole day. Perfect hunting conditions for predators. The strong wind makes a huge noise blowing through the thick bush. Prey animals like buffalo can’t then really hear anything. Secondly, with the wind blasting in all directions, their sense of smell is all over the place. While watching this lazy pride of lions, one female suddenly lifted her head and stared into the distance. Out of nowhere, about two hundred metres down the dry riverbank, an old buffalo bull came walking down to graze. The one lioness got up, and started walking slowly and very persistent in that direction. With the blowing wind in her favour, she manages to stalk the buffalo and gets within metres. Still no sign of the other lions at this stage. Eventually the buffalo realizes something is not well and turns around. Immediately his instincts takes over and he charges the lioness. Buffalo are extremely dangerous mammals and have killed many lions before. They are much bigger and stronger than lions and those horns are deadly. The rest of the lion pride in the meantime strategically moved around and was on the opposite side, trying to circle around their prey. The buffalo charged in all directions and kept these lions guessing for a while. Then the number of lions just became too much for this lone bull and they manage to slow it down, biting it from behind and on the legs. There were also a few attempts from a lioness jumping on its back, trying to bite into the spine. Usually lions would go for the throat first, and suffocate their prey before they start feeding. This particular pride of lions were obviously experienced enough to understand the dangers of a buffalo’s horns but inexperienced enough to not be able to get around those horns and go for the throat. This ordeal lasted for over forty five minutes. Eventually the buffalo gave in and went down on the ground. At this stage one could hear the distinct distress call. He couldn’t fight back anymore. His adrenalin and energy was depleted and the lions started eating it alive from behind. After watching this for almost an hour, we had to go back to camp for work. It was still alive when we left. News came in later that the old bull eventually died not long after we left. This pride of lions were on the carcass feeding for another three days thereafter. Witnessing nature in action at such a level is definitely a once in lifetime experience and not something we will forget in a long time.

Poor Baby Elephant Struggles to get back on her feet 44s

Poor Baby Elephant Struggles to get back on her feet

The life of a baby Elelphant is filled with struggle and challenges and they are real. Getting back on their feet is just one of those challenges they have to deal with. This video shows a female baby Elephant lying in the mud and then trying to stand up. What a mission it was indeed in the beginning. Several attempts was a failure. The manner in which this cute little one wanted to get back up was rather comical. This had everyone in laughter. At the same time though, one could not help but to feel sorry for the poor Elephant and her struggle. There were also no help from any of the other adult Elephants around. For Elephants just to go lie down flat on their sides is a rare occasion. One of the most obvious reasons is their size. How does three to five tons go lie down flat and then get back up again? That is a real problem and challenge. Baby Elephants on the other hand are not that huge in size yet, so they will still attempt to lie down every now and then. This specific little female enjoyed some time flat on her side in the mud. It was in the middle of the day and extremely hot. Elephants do not have sweat glands like we as humans do. They cannot sweat to cool themselves down. These giant creatures love to throw mud and water all over themselves to cool down. Rolling in the mud covers the whole body for a cooldown, and at the same time helps them to get rid of any skin irritations. This little one did exactly just that. After her cooling down session, it was time to get up. She tried to use momentum to get back up by swinging the left back leg up into the air several times. The momentum created was just too little every time and the poor Elephant would then fall back on her side again. Eventually, after some real effort, the momentum build was just enough to roll her over onto her knees. From there she could get herself back on her feet. All covered in mud and surely a little tired as well, she was up and ready to carry on with her journey with the rest of the herd. This short struggle is only one of the many challenges lying ahead for our adorable little one. Her life as a baby Elephant will teach her all the lessons and skills necessary to hopefully one day, lead her own herd through the plains of Africa

Cheeky Elephant chases animals from 48s

Cheeky Elephant chases animals from "his" watering hole

This funny incident was filmed at a water point in the Kruger National Park. This video tells the story of a very temperamental and cheeky young elephant bull that believes a certain waterhole belongs to him. At the top of the hill, there is a concrete reservoir, storing the water for the below open water point. Over time elephants figured out they can drink straight from this reservoir as they are tall enough to reach inside with their trunks. So they have this one all to themselves. This concrete reservoir then feeds the open water point below, roughly a hundred yards away. This water is then accessible for all other animals that cannot reach over the wall of the reservoir. All of this did not seem good enough for this young bull elephant. As much as elephants love fresh water, just as much do they hate to share any water with other animals. Why is that? Well probably just because they can. You are the largest land mammal on the planet weighing close to five tons and drinks up to 150 liters of water per day. Why should you share? This elephant adamantly and full of cheek made his way from the reservoir, down towards some blue wildebeest standing at the water. Poor animals were just trying to have a drink at the open water point. One can hear the rumbling noise while he approaches with his head held up high. This guy was on a mission to show everyone who is boss. With a loud scream, followed by a trumpeting noise, he chases away the poor wildebeest before they can even have a proper drink. Then it gets even funnier. This cheeky elephant then takes a trunk full of mud and slings it towards the wildebeest, just to really show them what he thinks about them sharing "HIS" water. The last part of the video shows a few other elephants now joined the cheeky bull elephant. The wildebeest think about returning to the water in desperation. The elephant bull walks up to them again in a threatening manner, head held up high and ears out. Then, just as the young one did earlier, another elephant takes a trunk full of mud and slings it at the wildebeest in a comical manner. The wildebeest there and then decided they had enough of this harassment and eventually moved off, only to return later once the elephants moved on. Who knew elephants could get involved in mudslinging!

Strange bird makes truly unique 'cork-popping' call29s

Strange bird makes truly unique 'cork-popping' call

Meet the bird with probably the most unusual and unique call in the whole of Africa. The Black-Bellied Bustard, a large ground-dwelling bird found in woodland and open grassland areas of sub-Saharan Africa. These birds are uncommon local residents in the Kruger National Park, South Africa. The most attractive and fascinating part about this whole bird is by far its unique and rather funny call. At first the male bird is busy shaking and preening his feathers. It's very important for this male to look at his best and in great condition. During the call, he displays with his tail held in an upright fanned position. He lifts his head high and then the call starts with a "quaaaark"... There is silence for 2 -3 seconds during which he pulls his neck back down. He then finishes the call with a funny "kwww ick" sound or otherwise referred to as a "cork popping" sound. The male bird uses this unique sound to promote and advertise his presence in his territory so other males can stay away. At the same time, it also let's all the females in the area know that he is the man, and ready for action. This is a call that people will seldom only hear over the grassy plains of the Kruger Park, never mind seeing the bird in action while performing this unique call. What a great experience to have this bird right in front of us, showing off in style.

Birds land on Hippo's head to drink water 45s

Birds land on Hippo's head to drink water

This video was recorded while on Safari in the Kruger National Park, South Africa. We stopped at a waterhole to watch a few hippos lazing around in the water. Hippos spend most of their day in the water, keeping their skin cool and protected from the harsh African sun. During the day they will do as little as possible. Around dusk time they start leaving the water to go and graze for a few hours. We watched these lazy hippos in the water for a while when we noticed something interesting and funny. Out of nowhere, these birds started landing on the heads of some of the hippos. They were identified as Oxpeckers. Oxpecker birds are one of the most fascinating bird species in Africa. These birds predominantly lives on ticks. They also feed on ectoparasites and blood from wounds. Their favourite host animals are Giraffe, Buffalo, Rhino, Kudu and occasionally hippo. It was during the heat of the day and these birds saw another opportunity instead of parasites on the hippo’s skin. They wanted a safe place from where they could drink water. They found that safe place right in the middle of the waterhole, on a hippo’s head. It is a lot safer than landing on land at the edge of the water and then trying to have a drink while you are vulnerable to many terrestrial dangers such as snakes and monitor lizards. These birds also only have limited time on the head of the hippo and they must drink quickly. Eventually the hippo will move and chase them off or it will go under water. This video shows how the birds have to get their timing right while one of them even gets sprayed by the breathing of one of the hippos. They stick it out right until the end when the hippos decide to go under the water eventually. It was a great experience to witness such comical interaction between mammals weighing over two tons and birds each weighing in at 60 grams.

Playful Baby Zebra Loves Chasing The Storks26s

Playful Baby Zebra Loves Chasing The Storks

We like to think that nature is merciless and that may be the case, but it's not always that all the animals are on their toes. It's not always that everything is serious and everyone is constantly looking out for their life. Some times, when zebras aren't running away from predators and not seeking for food nor sleeping, they also like to have fun. As this might come as a surprise to all of you, it actually happens. So, as you will see in this video, there is a baby zebra and a stork in close distance from one another. At a point it seems like they are both trying to find some food and eating while at the next it seems like someone is too excited and ready to play. This little zebra has had too much of all the chores of staying alive, staying close to mom and all other things one animal has to do in order to stay alive out there. For once it need to play by its own terms, and those terms currently are to have fun. Take a look at its enthusiasm and the way it provokes this stork to join in the fun. This video was recorded in the Kruger National Park, South Africa. Check out the funny interaction between a young zebra and several large storks. This is definitely not your everyday sighting in the wild!