Meyam Njobvu, June 29th 2010
We were heading out from camp for a morning walk, but we needed to drive to a particular point first as we were looking for the rare Cookson’s Wildebeeste. The grasslands behind Mwamba Camp are one of the only places in Africa you can see this very special Wildebeeste. It’s also a really pretty place to walk.
The night before was really busy in camp with lion’s calling from all directions around Mwamba. We drove to the designated point and left the vehicle to proceed on foot. Only a minute or so after we left the vehicle we heard a lion’s call from the left direction in comparison to the direction we were heading fo. We stopped and listened to this lion’s roar and after the lion stopped calling, I explained that we were going to change the direction of our walk to see if we couldn’t get closer to the lions on foot.
After about a kilometer our scout Gideon spotted a lion in the bushes, it was amazing as there were no tracks around, he had stopped calling and he was so deeply camouflaged in the bush, I don’t know how Gideon saw him. He stood up as we approached, but then lay back down again keeping an eye fixed on us. We thought we might have a better view by moving to a bush on the other side of the opening, but as we went to move his brother showed up and he decided to leave. They looked like nice strong boys as they walked across the clearing in front of us.
We figured that was probably going to be the highlight of the walk, but continued on. Shortly we saw some vultures perched on a tree so we headed in that direction. Once we got there we found a civet carcass up in the tree. We searched around carefully looking for a leopard since the evidence of a leopard kill was there. We couldn’t see the leopard, but there were signs that it had been recently feeding there so we left so as not to disturb the scene further.
The next thing you know Gideon had stopped and was looking intently to the west. It was a python, we all got very excited and moved over to the Mopane tree where it was situated. The python was being very photogenic moving its head and flicking its tongue so lots of photos and video were taken. It was time to end the walk, as we had to start heading back to camp, but the guests asked if we could return to the python later in the day with their big lenses.
It was a brilliant idea to come back as once we got there we found another smaller python coming to the direction of the tree with the original python in it. It was unbelievable to have two pythons so close together!
It was an amazing day with lots of great and unusual sightings.