Ostriches on the beach

Cooling down the feathers.
Cooling down the feathers.

This is a fairly unusual scene, seeing ostriches so close to the water’s edge.  The shot was taken on a hot and still summer’s day, and there they were cooling down on the wet sand.  While currently our winter weather is set in and the nor’ westerly storms hammer the coast, oh! we dream of ‘Summer Lovin’ …..  this week’s photo challenge!



How close is too close?

Recently during a spell of calm, sunny weather I went kayaking along the calm waters of False Bay towards Boulder’s Beach and came across a seal hunting an octopus in close proximity to swimmers on the beach.   A lot of activity ensued with the seal thrashing the octopus on the surface of the water.  I wasn’t sure whether the intention was to stun the octopus or use force to dismember the legs.   The swimmers were completely unfazed, and there i was imagining the octopus accidentally landing on some onlookers’ head.  Any sensible person would have moved away, right?!





Down on the Beach

The element of surprise is the part i look forward to most when walking on our favourite beach.  Yesterday I set off hoping to get some better photographs than the one below of some of the European swallows which like to inhabit an area near the coastal pathway.  I admire these hardy little visitors who cover a long distance to spend summers on our shores.

European SwallowsIt was a heavenly day, but the wind picked up and the wise little birds were sheltering in a different area.   Meanwhile the surfers, fishermen, and kite boarders looked to be revelling in the freshning spindrift.

Surf angling is popular when the yellowtail run.
Surf angling is popular when the yellowtail run.
The surf was up with a good curl for the local surfers to ride.
The surf was up with a good curl.
The baboons were happily foraging on the dune vegetation while family hike along the dunes.
A lone baboon passes a family hiking in the dunes.
A small family of baboon are peacefully enjoying their habitat.
While the baboon family are peacefully moving along a foraging route.

The swallows are forgotten as the antics of the baboons catch my attention.  The three juveniles and baby can’t resist sliping and sliding down the dune and in their indulgence of the rough and tumble of everyday play :

Pa, the Alpha male comes padding by on a mission to get across the sand to the car park.

_DSC2571The family follow, romping along.

_DSC2580Meanwhile one of the sub-adult males is engaging in a reconnaisance of a different kind.

As soon as the alpha male arrives, he beats it and leaves the scene.

_DSC2689Savvy baboons: they have learned that where there are people and cars, there is a possible source of easy food.   Leaving bags on car seats and in sight through the windows will certainly attract their attention.   Lay out a picnic or light a barbeque in their domain and they will come to investigate and even make off with food that’s laid out for the taking.   We could take better care not to tempt them with human food when we come into the areas which overlap with their homerange.

Baboons: Lunch on the Rocks

It’s always a thrill to come across baboons foraging along the shoreline and in the rock pools and such was our luck today at Cape Point, Platboom beach.  Generally their preferred diet is plant based, but several troops have adapted to eating mussels, limpets and crustaceans such as crab.  It provides valuable omega oils and proteins to their diet.  There were about twenty or so baboons in this troop and I couldn’t help admiring the statuesque alpha-male with his thick ‘cape’.  The inland troops tend to be much darker in colour, while the coastal troops have much lighter fur – sun bleached highlights, with a bit of a ‘beach-bum’ attitude.