Busy day today! Started with trying to seek out the lions (no luck unfortunately, yet!) followed by a research drive in Langa Langa. We saw so many animals we nearly filled a whole page! Over 70 individual animals were seen! Also enjoyed watching a dung beetle roll his perfect little ball of dung, and also watched a very short lived fight between two male dung beetles for a dung ball, which ended very quickly when one of the poor little guys ended up on his back for ages! By the time he was back on his feet, the other one had rolled the dung ball far away and was nowhere in sight!
We started driving back to Askari when we bumped into the same mother and son cheetahs that we met last week – they were in the middle of the road and completely not bothered by us so they lay down and had a rest. The mother got up at one point to smell a Mopani tree at the side of the road, where cheetah, lions and leopards mark their scent. The son soon followed in her steps – teaching at its best!
We drove on and the rain started to fall and by the time we arrived back it was a massive storm. We all had a little rest and waited out the storm by playing cards and reading. We then heard over the radio that two elephants were in the river and soon enough Joe was shouting “You have 60 seconds to get into the vehicle!” – so we all raced off and found the two gorgeous males by the river. The biggest male came very close to us and I think we were all holding our breaths at a few points, but he was just being inquisitive. We stayed with them both for quite a while and all of us were over the moon that we had finally seen an elephant in Pidwa. We had lunch.
After lunch we headed out around 3 to the boma in Langa Langa as it needed a bit of attention. The plants around the electric fence had been poisoned some time ago but they needed clearing so we did the remaining half of the outside perimeter with spades. Joe was impressed with our speed and we got more done that he had anticipated! We then also painted a number of the poles with a special antirust coating. We were lucky that most of the work was in the shade but we all still got very sticky, and some of us seemed to have landed up with more paint on ourselves than the posts! We all enjoyed a bit of physical work after sitting in the game vehicle for over 4 hours this morning, and felt a great deal of satisfaction! A long but good day.