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Cool big tusker. Sighting of a new bird

Anonymous's picture
Cool big tusker. Sighting of a new bird

I trust you had a pleasant week-end.

This photo below of the Tembe elephants caught my eye. Its not crystal clear but you can see that the one on the far right is big bull with very large tusks. I saw another photo from there the other day, also of a good sized bull with a single large tusk.


Its fantastic when you get to see a big bull elephant these days, personally I get quite ecstatic, fervently animated, some might say borderline “loco” (Spanish/Mexican for crazy??). There is a perfectly valid explanation for this “reaction” that I have. A predominant percentage, some say most, of all the biggest trophy bull elephants with their enormous tusks were hunted and poached out decades ago. One of the largest bulls recorded was from Angloa, weighing 10 tons and it was 4,5 metres at shoulder height, so add another metre to that- a monolithic animal!!! Ive also read that there has been a recorded tusk with a length of 3,5 metres and weighing 115 kilograms.




The elephant population as a whole is by no means in danger, and there have been (the Kruger magnificent 7) , and still are some big bulls around that are spreading their genes.


Then there was an awesome visit of an Openbilled Stork at NK, a first I believe, and what a sighting at that, I don’t think it could have been better. The status of this bird is rare (RDB). The Openbill is a colonial breeder and it often nests alongside cormorants, darters, herons, ibises and African Spoonbills. The young are fed exclusively on mollusks which is why their breeding is often linked to flooding, when this specialized diet is most abundant. The gap in the bill is for structural strength at tip while prey is extracted from shell. Achatina (Giant African land snails) shells may be crushed to get the “good stuff”/prey out.



There was a video taken of the Openbilled Stork, which can be accessed from the Africam front page at url



Thank-you to everyone for taking the photos and videos, and well done on the new bird, great stuff.


Happy camming

Cheers for now



donnabac's picture

This was an exciting

This was an exciting sighting and to have this great bird sitting on the NK branch was extra special. Thanks for your added knowledge and insights Josh.


cerinthe's picture

How do the African

How do the African Openbilled get the mullusks from the tip of it's bill into it's mouth? Having seen how many other birds throw the food in the back of their mouths or throats, I assume they do the same, but how many misses do they have?

Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars  -  Brian Littrell

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