It’s Monday 11th December 2006 and the mixed bag

It’s Monday 11th December 2006 and the mixed bag

fighting hippos I have been sorting out my computer this week – trying to get my files in order so that Jo can find things when I am gone! I have come across some lovely photos which were sent by recent guests and thought I would share them with you.

Ian and Sarah Harrison stayed with us in October and sent this wonderful shot of two hippos fighting.

Robin carries the dead eagle Venetia Robertson came out for the last mobile of the season and had a great surprise when she and the other guests found out on arrival that Robin was leading it – a real treat!  Robin and the guests found a dead fish eagle (or eagala fish as they are known locally). Venetia got some great close up shots of the talons and feathers of this juvenile raptor. You can certainly see how they manage to keep hold of the fish when they swoop down and pick them up out of the water.

eagle taloneagle feathers

bushbuck Meanwhile back at the ranch, this week has been fun for me. Rob and Emily took some time off – well actually went to Botswana to collect our new boat so “time off” depends on whether driving for about 5 days counts as relaxation for you! So with Luangwa House being looked after by Rachel, I got to help out at Nkwali. I do not get “up front” as often as I would like to and so it was a real treat to chat to the guests and organise dinner menus etc. Now I am back in front of my computer full time but am managing to pop out quite often sundowners being the most used excuse.

Game viewing this week has been good with several lion sightings including a pride with cubs on a walk, leopard close to camp (photo is actually from October and one of Venetia’s) and even a hyena about 100m from the car park.

One of the animals I will miss most is the bushbucks who stay close to Nkwali. They are normally very shy and dash off into the bush as soon as you get anywhere near them. However, our bushbucks actually hang around until you drive past them so we always get a great view of this pretty little antelope each time we drive from camp.

sundowner materialleopard (photo by Venetia)

Beej has been out and about with the camera and got a great shot of eles at dusk as well as this super landscape with the Chendeni Hills in the background and local fishermen on the river.

eles at dusklandscape with the Chendeni Hills

nesting flycatcher And finally… we have been seeing a blue flycatcher (ashy flycatcher for those who have the new birding books!) around Nkwali for a few years. Well, she has now settled down enough to nest. However, her chosen spot is in the roof above the main office – not the most peaceful spot but she appears to be sitting on eggs so with any luck we may see some little chicks before New Year – we’ll keep you posted.

Stay well and have a great week.

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