At last my dream of becoming a ‘walking’ nature guide at Beho Beho has come true. Thanks to for the support and training of the managers and my fellow guides, over the past three years, and my training course in Botswana I can now proudly say that I have achieved my dream and my ambition.
My first walk of the season was unbelievable, to carry the rifle and to be ‘in front’ and in command was certainly one of the greatest experiences of my life. Unfortunately we did not see too much and the bush was very thick following the long rains – but perhaps the animals understood that I was ‘new to the job’.
Viewing game on foot is totally different from viewing from a safari cruiser. Touching leaves, smelling flowers and identifying animal’s tracks and signs of where they have been bring you a lot closer to nature. All the senses are engaged.
It is getting dry and brown slowly here in the Selous but still looking lovely after the rains. There are lots of butterflies and flowers everywhere and good game viewing in this amazing landscape.
My new role is not all walking, it’s good to be in vehicle heading further out into the reserve than would be possible on foot. My first game drive for this season was very rewarding with, elephant, eland, wildebeest, giraffe, hyena, lion all in one morning, but what also made it extra special was seeing a leopard hunting an African hare. It was amazing to see how the leopard used cover to get close to its prey and also how fast it can run.
Young lion from the ‘Black Panther’ pride have grown noticeably bigger now, possibly next year when they will be four years old they will be ready to move out of the pride and become nomadic until they become strong enough to takeover their own female pride.
The number of hyena around our area is going up quickly, this is not good news for the other predators like lion, wild dog and leopard because their kills will be in danger of being stolen by the ever opportunistic hyenas.
Bibi [our old lioness] is still surviving, with the help of one of her daughters and a granddaughter. She has a lot of wounds around her back, most likely from being in a fight with one of the other prides. Let’s hope she will be fine soon.