One evening last week we had a conversation with some of the guests, it was all about some of the species found in the Selous that were really hard to see or at least have become hard to see, the few names that came up were wild dogs, side stripped jackals and reedbucks. To my surprise the same week we got to see all of them.
We started off with the magnificent wild dogs, they showed up at our airstrip. We first had a pack of seven and they went and just a day after another pack of nine showed up, we were all excited by this and thought it could not get any better but…,. just as they disappeared from the area, we were in for more surprises.
Driving out to Lake Manze we found two Bohor reedbucks right in the open, honestly this was now the second time I have seen this beautiful antelope in my almost six years in the Selous. To find them out in the open plains was another amazing sighting, at first they looked like impala because they were amongst a big herd of them but something seemed odd, the horns were not right, hooked would be the description and their colour was too light and so they stood out. They didn’t stick around for too long but the little time we had with them was just enough.
To make the week even better, I had not seen the side stripped jackals for over a year and a half, and this morning driving to Lake Manze again we found a couple out on the plains we call little Serengeti, I shouted YES!!!!!…. and the guests were like what, then they saw the little canid and went JACKAL!!!!….. I was so excited to see them with their tails looking out of place and their cautious behaviour that doesn’t allow you too close to their comfort. Anyways… from a distance we watched the two across the plain as they disappeared into the wilderness.
As if all this was not enough, we had one more treat in store for us. As we were getting close to Lake Manze, to be precise at pelican pan, we found seven lions, three adult females and four cubs, they had pulled down a mother wildebeest and its calf, sad but at least they didn’t leave either one to mourn for a loss. They had bellies so full that the skin couldn’t stretch anymore, so we left them there in the open knowing for sure they will have to seek shade and water and so as we were heading back an hour later we tried to track where they had pulled their kill and yes it was an ideal place under a palm with a little puddle of water, it couldn’t be a better place, away from the vultures and anything else that might bring any inconveniences.
The last little touch to the week and on the same day as the jackals and the lions, we also had a very close look at a giant eagle owl, we saw it fly to a perch and followed it, it was a poser which was to our advantage and the beautiful pink eyelids kept starring at us for a few minutes before we decide to live it in peace.
Anyways this has been the best week so far, well the year has just started so I really shouldn’t be saying that but…. the truth is it might be hard to beat.