It’s Monday 2nd July 2012 and a medley!
As I was sitting in the Landrover, bouncing around on the dirt road between Nkwali and Nsefu wandering what to talk to you all about this week (there have been many different happenings), I thought that we would take the short story route! The main spark to this train of thought was the fact that on a brief detour to Luangwa River Camp we bumped into a Side Striped Jackal – my first ever sighting in the Luangwa! It was one of those classic moments when you rub your eyes and take a second look because you can not be entirely sure that what you are seeing is actually real. By the time I had got my act together to pick up my camera, the moment had passed so I am afraid that you are going to simply have to take my word for it.
Life in the valley really is drying up quickly and I think we are in for quite a tough year, well for the prey that is. Lunga Lagoon still has plenty of water in it and is fast becoming a focal point for a lot of game. The eland are still hanging around, impalas, elephants and buffalos taking their long deep sips of water under watchful eyes of the crocodiles(this year the crocodile population appears to have rocketed!).
Fish eagles regally perched on trees watching over all the happenings, waiting for something to occur and an opportunity to arise. The martial eagles also seem to be in abundance and we have seen several of these magnificently huge birds circling above and one was even spotted in a tree having just swooped down and caught a mongoose.
For those of you who don’t know, Rocky is back and on his first walk back in the valley he followed a female leopard as she walked through the bush and straight towards a male. It was only because the male saw them that the female noticed and for a brief moment both leopards turned and looked at them before sauntering off into the distance. Also back home is Simon Cousins who is here on a “business trip” over the long weekend so is ready and raring to go and has already had a rather close encounter with an elephant, a reminder about the surprises the Luangwa has to offer.
This weekend we also kicked off our 2012 mobile season, so the team is in, chairs have been painted, freezers cleaned, truck serviced as well as packed and everyone headed up to Mupamadzi on Saturday. This year was a much later start than previously, as things have been so hectic that time has not been on our side. But off we all went seeing lions between the camps on the first trip so as you can imagine spirits were sky high when I left everyone up there.
One final mention for the week, is to let you all know about this years photography competition. There are three categories: wildlife, people and landscape. All photos need to be taken whilst staying at a Robin Pope Safaris camp any time from December 2011 onwards. For more information, have a look at this link. Good luck and we look forward to seeing the winner here.
Bye bye for now and have a great week.