At this time of year in Africa, season greetings do not come dressed in cold weather and snowfall like we see on the scenes of Christmas cards. Rather the season greets us with hot summer days and the welcome onset of rain.
At Robin Pope Safaris’ Mkulumadzi in the Majete Wildlife Reserve, we excitedly greet the festive summer season back. The heavens open up, our world turns a vibrant green and the wildlife rejoices. These are also the tell tale signs that Christmas is coming.
Mkulumadzi guide, Erik, shares a little more about how the Majete wildlife have been welcoming the recent rains:
The dry season has officially come to an end in the Lower Shire Valley. What a strange sensation it is to be covered in cold, wet rain after having spent the last months living in an oven!
Green grass and leaves are transforming the landscape and it feels good to watch Majete’s grazers and browsers enjoying plentiful feeding sessions for the first time in months.
Little baby impalas and warthog piglets are sprouting up here, there, and everywhere and the birds are singing their hearts out, welcoming the rains.
The famous Majete lion pride spent a good week patrolling and hunting along the Mkulumadzi River and spoilt us to many pronounced sightings.
Big brother, Sapitwa, is the one in control of queen Shire now and has been following and echoing her every move. His brother,Chimwala, is always found a small distance away, sulking in the shade and bearing marks and scars of their altercations of brotherly rivalry.
Shire’s new cub is not so little anymore and never misses a chance to bask in Sapitwa’s presence. They are the best of buddies and have been and eating, walking, and resting together any chance they get.
One of Majete’s young rhino bulls that live along the Shire River has become increasingly gracious in granting us with sightings.
He’s often found sleeping or browsing next to the road and doesn’t mind a bunch of excited and starry-eyed guests taking his picture. Lundu, a former resident of Liwonde National Park, is the oldest bull in the reserve and recently had his horn trimmed and filed down since becoming the main suspect of inflicting injury upon the younger bulls. Despite this, he’s very happy to stop for us when our paths cross to let us take photos before he carries on with his day.
So the season is changing and we are privileged to be the lucky front row spectators to see the marvels unfolding before us! We are ready for more rains and all that they can bring.
Season greetings from Mkulumadzi!