Well, hello there. I hope that you are fabulously well and have enjoyed yet another relaxing weekend. Here in the Luangwa, there is no doubt that we simply cannot get away from the animals whether it be the elephants pouring into camp to feast on the ebony fruits that are dropping by the bucket load as well as the winterthorn trees which this year are completely laden with fruit.
The warthogs are so preoccupied digging around with their hardened snouts for roots and tubers that they barely notice as we drive past and all we see are their little brown/grey bottoms in the air poking out above the now dried out grasses. We are so incredibly lucky to experience all of this on a daily basis but lets step into the shoes of Rob and Cindy Hardin who have been kind enough to share their experience with us from a first timer’s point of view. Rob over to you:
“I have returned from my first African safari and still have a sense of wonder at how impactful it was. If it is on your bucket list, I recommend doing it sooner rather than later.
One thing that struck me as we drove through the bush looking at these beautiful creatures, (well…mostly beautiful. Hyenas and Warthogs could use a bit more work), was that I had immersed myself in a world of constant risk assessment.
As we watched a leopard sitting up in a tree with a recent kill, the guide pointed out a common sight. A lone Hyena was sitting underneath, waiting for the leopard to make a mistake and drop something. Given the fact that there was only one Hyena, I asked our guide why the leopard didn’t simply jump down and remind the Hyena where they each stood on the predator chart. He said if the leopard chose to attack the hyena, there was little doubt as to the immediate result, but if the hyena managed to wound the leopard, it might result in the ultimate death of the leopard due to its inability to successfully chase down it’s next meal and it could starve.
The hyena understands that if it gets wounded, it has its clan that it can return to and can survive by scavenging with them. To stretch a metaphor out of this to a tortuous degree, the leopard is demonstrating some characteristics of a patient long term investor. By waiting for the right time to act and deciding that the short-term gain of scaring the hell out of the hyena, simply isn’t worth it…
Cindy and I will certainly be returning someday for another wonderful experience with Robin Pope Safaris.”
Wonderful thanks so much for sharing with us. You are absolutely right; life out here is certainly survival of the fittest or the most cunning! Something that is all too frequently at the forefront of our minds. In wide eyed panic we stood watching as the dogs charged through camp chasing some puku and for one the only route of escape was across the river but alas this was not such a great plan for the crocodiles took advantage of the situation and the poor creature bounced its last bounce.
Let’s not end this week’s Its Monday on an ending but rather a new beginning… Whilst the youngster is yet to be spotted, we have a new leopard cub up at Tena Tena as the guests have been seeing the mum wandering through the bush, teats full of milk in search of an easy meal for herself so that she can sustain her youngster. We look forward to catching a glimpse of the youngster as soon as mum feels she is ready for it to make its first appearance.
So, there we have it for this week. I shall now leave you to the rest of your day and bid you all a very fond farewell and hope that you have a fabulous week ahead with plenty of smiles and laughter and don’t forget to look after one-another.