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Encounters in the land of big game

date of entry 17/04/1989
mileage 20,227

capital Gaborone

area 581.730 km²

population 2.098.000

GDP 16,4 Mrd. US-Dollar

People visit Botswana to experience big animals. The Holtorfs encountered large elephant herds at waterholes and even managed to photograph shy animals, such as cheetahs. Botswana and southern Africa are among the places on the planet to which Gunther Holtorf would be happy to return again with Otto.
  • ... until the elephants have finished drinking
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  • Otto came to Botswana on their first tour of Africa back in 1989. The country is renowned for its wildlife, including the "Big Five": lion, leopard, rhinoceros, Cape buffalo and elephant.
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  • In the vast savannah of this country in southern Africa the first task is to actually find the animals
    2  of  23
  • The huge and solitary baobab trees that tower up from the ground provide a helpful landmark and a little shade
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  • Many baboons gather close to waterholes in Botswana
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  • Cape buffalo grazing there on the edge ...
    5  of  23
  • ... together with warthogs ...
    6  of  23
  • ... and springbok antelope
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  • Wildebeest also converge on the waterholes in large herds in order to drink
    8  of  23
  • This elephant had died – possibly killed by poachers for its tusks
    9  of  23
  • Fortunately the Holtorfs also came across live specimens. On the journey through the bush we needed to be constantly prepared for the sudden sight of elephants in front of Otto’s bumper.
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  • This adult bull giraffe is eating in the tree tops. His markings are almost leaf-shaped.
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  • A herd of giraffes, a good six metres tall, gathers at dusk
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  • Cheetahs are the fastest land animals on the planet. This makes them correspondingly difficult to photograph.
    13  of  23
  • But Gunther was lucky ...
    14  of  23
  • ... and got the chance to photograph several at once.
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  • This lioness eyes Otto and his passengers with curiosity bordering on mistrust
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  • The elephant cow and her young, on the other hand, show no interest whatsover in the three of them
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  • These gazelles will not be distracted from their turf war either
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  • A vulture waits in search of prey
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  • During the dry season large herds of elephants gather at the waterholes
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  • When they go into the water ...
    21  of  23
  • ... the other animals have to wait ...
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  • Video: Botswana – a journey from swamp to desert

Otto was here before ...


date of entry 19 April 1989
mileage 20,702


date of entry 20 April 1989
mileage 20,889


date of entry 29 July 1989
mileage 22,781


date of entry 30 July 1989
mileage 23,218