Ongava Tented Camp - October 2012

Nov 10, 2012 Ongava Tented Camp
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Weather and Landscape
October has been a very hot month. The middle of the day is the hottest part of the day with temperature reaching 42° C in the shade. Everyone is searching for some shade that promises some relief from the heat. The evenings are still very nice and cool even though we have been having quite a bit of wind in the evening.

In the afternoon we have also seen an increase in the build-up of clouds, preparing us for the possibility of some rain. We were also lucky to have two small showers with a few drops of rains in the middle of the night.

This month has been great for lion sightings, as the resident pride has been very active around camp and the surrounding areas. The pride is growing at a rapid rate, as there are currently 13 cubs and four adult females. Most of the sightings have occurred at night, and as the sun dips below the horizon, the lion audio begins as these felines prepare for their nightly forays. The pride has visited the camp waterhole a number of times.

Rhino sightings have been really good too, showing how active conservation and protection benefits the conservation of this vulnerable species. The great news is that many of the cows have young calves, ensuring the future of the species in the area. Both black and white rhino have been seen, with white rhino being seen more often.

The camp waterhole has produced some really fantastic sightings too, as most of the surface water in the area has already evaporated. One of the highlights was the sighting of a pair of cheetah which came for a drink as the guests were going to sleep. Apart from this sighting, cheetah have been seen a couple of times whilst out on game drive, as well as a number of leopards too.

Etosha has provided some top class sightings too as huge concentrations of zebra, springbok and black-faced impala have been seen. Elephants have been fairly scarce, especially sightings of big herds, as they have already started moving further north in anticipation for the rains.

Research and Conservation
The Ongava Research Centre has been very busy this month as they undertook their annual rhino notching project. The aim was to dart eight white rhino in order to obtain blood samples and to ear notch the individuals. A new development in this annual practice is that the guests in camp were involved, allowing for a hands on experience. The procedure took two days to be completed and everything ran smoothly.

Guest Comments
"Me-Gusto was a terrific guide, he not only took us to see hundreds of animals and birds but was able to tell us so much about them. The food was very good and the staff was efficient and courteous. We loved hearing the lions roar at night."

"Watching the lion cubs playing at the waterhole while sipping a cold beer - fantastic! The sundowners excursion, a full day into Etosha - Brilliant."

"Walking in the early morning to watch white rhino, catching sight of cheetah. We really enjoyed the whole experience."

Staff in Camp
Managers: Silvia Morgante, Corne Cocklin, Inge Kambatuku and Festus Eiseb.
Guides: Rio Aibeb, Leon Basson, Bono Gauseb and Me-Gusto Busch.

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