News article – Little Makalolo Camp
Weather and Landscape
At last we have entered the ‘rainy season’ which has been very warmly welcomed by all. The temperatures have been very comfortable with the maximum being 32° C for the month and a minimum of 17° C. We have enjoyed some pretty spectacular African thunderstorms, with lightning splitting up the sky, and the rains cleansing the air and the cooling the earth.
The vegetation has become thick and lush. Due to the rainfall, which is now a regular occurrence, the natural pans in the forest are filling up, resulting in less activity at the pan in front of camp. The rains have been quite consistent with recordings for the month surpassing 250 mm. The landscape around camp has changed dramatically in a matter of weeks, a sea of beautiful green grass and new growth all around. Little shrubs seemed to have popped up out of nowhere, stunningly beautiful flowers are blooming, natural water pans have formed all over the place – all is well and looking healthy again.
If we were to tell guests that came into camp now that just at the beginning of the month there were hundreds of animals crowded around the waterholes, who had walked for miles in desperate need of water, and that they were beginning to suffer from such low water levels and overgrazed surroundings, elephants were dying of dehydration, they would struggl e to believe us. The change in the flourishing growth that occurred in just the space of a few weeks of rain is unbelievable. Now that the rains have come, there is a hive of activity in all ways possible as the many living organisms around us thrive in this new beginning.
Thousands of interesting insects have begun to hatch, these include the notorious flying termites which appear after the rain, and the dung beetles which have come out in substantial numbers and can be seen all around rolling their little balls of dung.
December means new life for many of the animals including zebra, wildebeest, impala and other antelope that have begun to give birth to their young.
The cat sightings this month have not been as much as the previous months due to the lush growth, but you can hear them calling often at night.
Other great sightings for the month include wild dog, cheetah, buffalo, many elephant and eland.
Birds and Birding
Amur falcons have started flying in their numbers, making for some good aerial activity as they hawk insects on the wing. They are quite fascinating to watch as they feed on termites. The other migratory birds that have been very visible are the white s torks, giving some colour to the floodplains.
Staff in Camp