We had a quieter night, though there was the odd cackling chatter and ominous scrunching.  Water arrived at 5.30 for a quick wash and then breakfast.  We were going to drive to where we were having our Mokoro canoe trip. On the way we stopped to watch two juvenile Hyena playing together in their set.  They had been left on their own, while their mother was out hunting.  The young Hyena were quite enchanting and entertaining.

We arrived at the river and boarded the canoes, two of us and the punter.  Rosemary attempted to put on the life jacket, and was told it is was on the seat as a cushion.  We slowly cruised along the river, with the guide explaining river life, showing us food from the rhizomes of the lilies,  making cups from lily leaves, and drinking clean water from the stalk of the lily.  We saw the snails which are feasted on by the Open Billed Storks.  The Day Water Lilies which bloom during the day, white and turn pink/lilac after they are pollinated by insects.  There were also Night Water Lilies.  These are differentiated from the Day Water Lilies, apart from the time of day when they flower, by serrated edges to their leaves.

There were masses of dragonflies, following the canoes looking for insects disturbed by our passage.  Still made it impossible to photograph them.

Jacana were in abundance, doing their Jesus walk across the lily pad leaves.  A Pied Kingfisher was in attendance as were Fish Eagles & African Darter.  An Arnott’s Chat made an appearance.

Once our trip was over, we made our way back to the camp for lunch.  On the way home we spied rather a large number of vultures circling and landing in the nearby trees.  We headed over and saw the sad sight of a mother zebra standing over her foal which had died. No idea how it had died. She kept near to the foal, pushing it, presumably in the hope it would awake. The rest of her herd kept nearby. The vultures sat and watched, with one brave White Backed Vulture kept making sallies towards the baby zebra.  We left for our own lunch.

During the afternoon in camp an Elephant walked right past the tents within feet.  We were also entertained by the monkeys in the trees walking over the tents and drinking out of the shower buckets.

The evening drive saw a few Elephants.  We watched them shake trees to dislodge nuts from the branches.  The Baboons took exception to their trees being shaken and shrieked with indignation.  Along the river more Elephant, Hippos and a couple of young male lions snoozing on the bank.  Across the river from them were a family camping totally oblivious to the lions.

We spotted a Wattled Crane, Go Away Bird, Magpie, Shrike , Waterbuck, Kudu  and found a Leopard in the grass.

We eventually headed off in the dying light to find out what had happened to the baby zebra.  The vultures all seemed to be still sitting in the trees, but the zebra was not to be found.   Eventually it was spotted under a tree with a Hyena in attendance.  There was very little of the Zebra left.  It was surmised that the vultures had eaten most of it, and the Hyena had taken the remains away to finish it off.  The Hyena on being spotted dragged the remains of the Zebra under bushes. On the drive home an African Wild Cat was spotted in the grass.  Apparently quite a rare spotting.

Back at the campsite we did a little star spotting after dinner, and looked for bats with the bat detectors one of the clients, Ben, had brought with him.


Day 3, Botswana Khwai – Hyena — No Comments

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