Serengeti National Park
Our four days on the Serengeti followed the same daily pattern. For the best game viewing, it was important to follow the animals' schedule, so there was no lazy lounging around in the morning. We got the "wake-up call" from one of the staff members who would call through the tent door around 5:00 a.m.and rouse us from our cots After a hearty breakfast in the dining tent, we would set out for a long morning of exploration, then return to our tent camp where we would eat lunch and join the animals in taking our afternoon snooze. Late afternoon found us back in the Land Cruisers hunting for animals prowling in the cool of the dusky evening.
We woke today to a very chilly morning. Rob discovered to his dismay that the camp staff was correct when they warned us not to leave any food lying about. Sure enough, we had been invaded by wild animals. Rob lifted his ziplock baggie of protein powder and the powder came pouring out of a little hole nibbled by the mighty African mouse!
|The mighty African mouse was the only animal to invade our Serengeti tent.
|Sunrise over the umbrella acacia tree
|Our second flat tire of the trip. It's a miracle there weren't more!
|Rob and Joan on the dry grasslands.
|A small herd of "tommies" - Thompson's gazelles cross our path.
|A tropical landscape in the middle of the Serengeti
|The yellow acacia
Our driver, Richie, was a bird expert, so we were able to spot and identify dozens of the gorgeous birds that live on these plains.
|Lapped faced vulture
|Three banded plover
|Herons guard their nest
|Yellow-throated sun goose
|A flock of herons
|Yellow-billed stork in flight
|Egyptian geese with their chicks
|The blacksmith plover makes a sound like tapping on an anvil
|Black - billed bustard
|A gorgeous tiny yellow-throated bee eater
|Secretary birds in finding nesting materials
|Building the nest
|Such an interesting bird!
|The mate brings more nesting materials
|Male Thompson gazelle
|Hippos in the pool and grazing on the riverbank
|Marabou stork and hippo
|Elephants are usually seen in family groups
|A Cape buffalo enjoys a good scratch
|Hey, Mom! I'm not done with breakfast yet!
|I'm pretty sure the elephant is aware of the lion...and not too concerned about it.
|Can you see the small pride of lions under the tree?
|Here they are up close
|A baby baboon enjoys a ride
|A tower of giraffes
|How they can make a meal of thse VERY thorny acacias is a mystery to me!
|Snack time by the Hippo Pool
|Hippo Pool on the Seronera River
|The muddy, smelly water was churned up by the river carp.
|Looks just like the Jungle Boat ride at Disneyland!
|Just enjoying a little afternoon delight!
|Apparently part of the reason the hippos crowd together is to keep safe from their river companion, the crocodile.
As we returned to our tent camp for our lunch and naptime, we encountered the one animal that actually caused us any problems on the entire trip...the pesky tsetse fly. They flew in through the open pop-top of our vehicle as we drove into the hills and decided that we were a tasty bunch. As they have quite a painful bite, our driver kindly stopped and lowered the lid.
|Every one was unique
|Great hiding places for animals!
|Candelabra trees and balancing rocks
|Two leopards enjoy a nap on the warm rock...
|...while another enjoys a nap in a tree.
|This hyena also enjoys a nap on a kopje.
|A family of baboons
|Mama and baby
|Small herd of waterbucks
|Black faced vervet monkey
And we spotted a few new birds in the evening...
|A flock of blue- breasted cordon bleu
|Male Jackson's hornbill
|Flock of Fisher's Love Birds with a grey-headed fiscal shrike
|Cape teal duck
We returned to our tent camp for a huge dinner and visiting time around the campfire sharing memories of another wonderful day, then went to bed with the sun, preparing for another exciting game drive the next day.
|The evening campfire
|The lanterns would light our way to our tent - second from the end. I never got over being nervous
walking to our tent after dark. There were occasionally animals walking right through the camp at night!