Jaco Etsebeth, Hills and Dales
While driving home recently I was confronted by a magnificent snouted cobra. It stood swaying in the middle of the track, seeming to challenge me as I stopped to grab my camera. Then it suddenly shot off into the long grass and to my surprise, another cobra slithered over the road after it.
Andrew Kock, Kyalami
I regularly cycle through the Schurveberg area and found these clear tracks in a patch of dried clay. After asking verious experts, they concur that these are brown hyena tracks “due to the difference in size of the front and back spoor”. My cell gives an indication of size. What is really amazing is that the location of these tracks is within 700m of the first house in a suburb of Erasmia.
Editor's note: The brown hyena spotted by Lee Dormer in Doornrandje (VeldTalk 51) was found dead next to the R511 on 23 July. It must have been hit by a vehicle.
Eileen, Hills and Dales
I found this fascinating pattern on the trunk of a Karee tree severely burnt in a veld fire. Karees are hardy and this one will probably survive but the damage done by fires every year is heart-breaking.
Annelize de Klerk, Crystal Mist, Doornrandje
Hierdie yslike groot skilpad het naby ons huis oor die pad geloop. Nog ’n bewys van die wonderlike natuur en die verskeidenheid van diere en inseklewe om ons. Gelukkig is daar min verkeer op ons pad maar watter kans het sulke skilpaaie wanneer ons velde so brand in die winter?
Editor's note: The winter veld fires hit the Conservancy hard this year. While some fires got out of hand when fire-breaking was attempted during the day, others were deliberately set alight at night. Those residents who regularly respond to fight fires report a considerable cost in cut tyres, damaged vehicles and firegreens.