We had about 100 elephants around the camp yesterday, they were making a tremendous noise! It was amazing!
At the end of January moving into February the sun is still searing across the African sky and making the cicadas pierce the heat with their shrill voices.The cooler evenings are just gorgeous and the pool is the favourite place for sensible people after the sapping heat of the day. The vegetation is still showing off its Summer splendour with many of the smaller forbs and shrubs displaying their splendid flower colours.There are carpets of yellow flowers from the “dubbeltjie” thorns that follow the sun’s path during the day, and close at night. These are much favoured by the elephant that roam over the area.
As the days gradually shorten ,February and March are still blessed with hot days and balmy nights.You may see the huge Mopane moths flutter to the lights at night. They are brief residents completing their short but frantic life cycle as they have done for thousands of years. The sky is like a heavy blanket of kaleidoscopic lights with no pollution to dampen the visuals. Satellite spotting in the early evening is always good fun.The International Space Station is easily visible most nights.
The cooler months of April to June are more temperate with the need for a jersey in the evenings, but the clarity of the days is unsurpassed. As the vegetation slowly dwindles, the Mopanes change to russet colours and we see the grazers focussing on what grass reserves are left. July to August show a gentle transition to the really dry period leading up to our rainy season starting in November.
August is a beautiful month, cool mornings, warm sunny days, vibrant blue skies, very few insects to annoy you at night!
The perfect time to visit Kaoxa!
Just as the grass dries and gets sparse, so the grazing pressure increases and as a result we have left 100m section of our perimeter fence down as the elephants move from one side of the road to the other. The paths they have chosen are probably deeply rooted in their DNA from previous generations.
We always urge people walking on the farm to take great care against surprising elephant and getting into dangerous situations.
We also have 2 itinerant male lions moving on and off the property on a regular basis. They communicate with their Botswana cousins and can be heard calling on most nights.
A mating pair of leopard were spotted by a lucky group of birders in January, so we’ll hope to see the offspring in the late winter months.
Recently on a visit into Mapungubwe Park we came upon a gorgeous pride of about 6 lions, with in meters of our car in full view of the ‘main entrance gate’, obviously used to the attentive public and lying in various reposes while we took photos of them, enjoying the last rays of the afternoon sunshine.
On these cooler evenings there is nothing better than sitting back with your evening ‘tipple’ under one of the majestic Baobab trees as the sun dips below the horizon.
If you are lucky you can enjoy watching the elephants at the water hole – a favourite place for them or at the small dam after your walk to the ‘Rock Art Shelter.’ Elephant watching is easily done from any one of the many rocky outcrops. It gives one a safe viewing vantage point .
On one of our family walks recently, we saw eleven mammalian species, which by any standard is phenomenal.
We urge you to come and experience this wild and ever-changing paradise!
* Koppie – Rocky Hills
* Mopane trees are the most common trees found in the area.