So often you will hear people, guides included, what they had seen on their game drives.
More often than not if one or more of the clichéd big five hasn’t been seen, you will inevitably be told it was a quiet drive.


In my opinion it is virtually impossible to go out into the bush and see nothing, where so much is going on around you all the time. One such morning there had not been any sightings of the big five, but what we did see was a Southern Yellow Billed Hornbill bouncing around the base of a small bush. I told my guests that this was interesting behavior for this bird a they are normally jumping around in the trees searching for insects or fruit as they do follow a very varied diet and have personally witnessed one consuming a Pygmy Mouse.
We watched this particular hornbill taking great interest in something close to ground level, making stabbing grabs at its point of interest. After finally grabbing it quarry and dropping it to the ground did we then notice what all the interest was over? It was a large and beautifully coloured beetle called a Regal Fruit Chafer.
Pluck Biffed
After a short period of plucking the beetle off the bush and flinging it around on the ground the hornbill seemed to decide that this creature wasn’t worth consumption and left the now bewildered beetle to its own devices. The hornbill lost interest and flew off to forage elsewhere, giving the beetle a chance to right herself and climb back into the cover of the foliage, where she had been unceremoniously removed from, leaving us feeling privileged to have been witness this little battle between bird and insect.
Escape
There is so much more to the bush than just the big five.