What, more wildlife?!!
on Mangos, Monkeys and Maggie (Uganda), 31/Jul/2009 15:01, 34 days ago
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Our weekend visit to Murchison National Park was as wonderful as ever. The safari ended up as an elephant chase. We’d seen a few in the first few minutes but they were too far away and we wanted to get closer. Sulieman took us to the north of the park where we had not visited before. There was a lot of evidence of elephants being nearby (fresh dung, footprints and broken branches) but not surprisingly they can easily hide in the trees. Eventually we were rewarded by coming across a large herd including some babies. Two of the males were fighting which was an amazing sight. There was a lot of damage to trees and bushes and you can see why villagers are not keen to have elephants around.As well as elephants we saw more giraffe than we have ever seen before. They look such ungainly animals but when they move they are incredibly elegant. A herd of forty crossed the road just ahead of us. Tom learnt how quickly baboon can move when he put his packed lunch on the roof of the car for thirty seconds. The baboon grabbed it, opened the box and relieved Tom of his apple and crackers.Two events at the weekend reminded us how fragile life is here. On the boat trip we passed a group of rangers searching the river for the body of a colleague. He had jumped in to swim to his boat that was drifting away. It sounds like he was taken by a crocodile. There was also a near fatal crash involving a bus full of children. The brakes failed and the bus rolled back down the hill in to another mini bus nearly knocking it in to a ravine. Thankfully there were no serious injuries.This week I did manage to get out in to the villages to follow up leprosy patients. It is always an adventure going out. This time we got lost miles from any where and ended up driving down single file paths through gardens and fields until we found a road that we recognised. Eventually we found our patient who unfortunately was quite ill. We arranged for his treatment and he was so grateful he gave us money to buy a soda. Ugandans can be generous but rarely do the villagers have cash to give away. This man owns a grinding machine and was obviously making good money grinding maize and cassava.A few more wildlife photos:A hippo keeping an eye on the crocodile in the grass in front of him:Just playing:Elephant feeding each other:Cheeky baboon taking a drink from the pool:Now posing for the photo: