Climate and Landscape
We experienced magnificent cloud formations and on some days it appeared as if it would rain – until sudden strong winds came through and blew the rain away. This led to fluctuations in temperatures, and mornings ranged between 5 and 15° Celsius, warming up during the day. Then, soon after sunset, the temperatures dropped again.
Kalahari Plains has transformed into a wildlife paradise, particularly thanks to our local prides. The Bushman Pride consists of two adult females and three sub-adult siblings, the Plains Pride has three adult lioness and six cubs and then there are the two dominant males of the area, the Owens Boys (Long Wheel Base and Short Wheel Base). We have had spectacular sightings of all these lions.
One particularly amazing moment for guests and staff alike was witnessing these lions coming through the camp to drink water from the birdbath right in front of the main area. They seem to be enjoying the water from the birdbath more than the water in the main waterhole which gets a little contaminated by the flocks of vultures during the hot hours of the day, as they will dip in to cool themselves. These prides came into camp two to three times a week at different times of the month.
Besides cheetah, leopard and bat-eared fox, jackal are a firm favourite, especially when they‘re active. We also came across two leopards along the main road to Deception Valley, and our guests were treated to a very special sighting of a coalition of male cheetahs (known as the Shy Boys) who were very active and relaxed as they moved around attempting to locate their third coalition partner.
Overall, we had a month of incredible game viewing, and thanks to the influence of the little rain we had this month, we sighted amazing congregations of springbok with young, gemsbok, red hartebeest and wildebeest, while steenbok were also sighted both locally and at Deception Valley – it is the perfect season for herbivores to enjoy these healthy resources.
Birds and Birding
Birdlife is prolific at this time of the year and we were delighted to welcome some of the migratory species like shaft-tailed whydahs and the smaller raptors such as yellow-billed kites, goshawks and kestrels.
Besides ostriches, kori bustards and secretarybirds were seen foraging through the grassland as vultures soared overhead. One of the outstanding characters of this semi-arid grassland, the northern black korhaan, was sighted often too.
The month offered a wealth of amazing sunsets thanks to the clouds which reflect the beautiful colours of the sun as it goes down. Then after sunset it’s always amazing to watch the night sky, especially on dark nights when some constellations like Orion were very visible.
Before their afternoon activities the Bushmen sing melodious songs and play games, cultural activities which allow our guests to really feel the true Kalahari. And of course, not forgetting our Monday boma night when the Bushmen family performs their impressive dance.
November delivered phenomenal cultural shows, with many guests agreeing that they had unique and awe-inspiring experiences and a lovely time with the Kalahari Plains team – yes, December was definitely a month to remember.
Staff in Camp
Managers: Wax, Dinny, Jackie,
Guides, Paul, Tsholo, PG, Kabo
Newsletter compiled by Kabo.k