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Botswanadreams

Chad 2019 - Central African Savannah and Wonders of the Sahara

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Botswanadreams
Posted (edited)

Dear Safari Talkers

 

We would like to invite you to an amazing but also exhausting  3 1/2 weeks journey to Chad. 

 

We met half of the big elephant herd in the Salamat River in Zakouma National Park

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many Camels at Guelta d'Archei in Ennedi

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and saw the beauties of the Lakes in the Ounianga area

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It'll be a bit time to get the first part ready on our homepage. Our report will be in German on our homepage. You have to struggle with the google English if you like to follow us to Chad.

 

Bye for now

Christa

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Botswanadreams

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Botswanadreams

After I read the trip reports by @inyathi from 2014 and 2015 I was so fascinated from this remote corner of Africa that I had to find a way to see and feel it by myself. Camp Nomad wasn't an option because of the immens costs. There has to be a cheaper way to go to Zakouma. As I saw the offer by @Sangeeta for 2018 with the Tinga Camp we had already booked our India trip for this time. So I was happy that she continued this offer in 2019. Flying for only one week to Chad was a big outlay too. With my love in desert landscapes the idea was born to combine Zakouma with a road trip to the Ennedi Massive and the Lakes of Ounianga both world heritage sites. 

 

Now we are since one week back from this little adventure I can say it was hot, dusty, windy, bumpy but very fascinating and for me absolut worth to do it.

 

 

Zakouma National Park from the air

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I'm busy with the first part. Like always I will post here a few pics and a link to our homepage. Unfortunately I'm not able to write a trip report in English. Sorry.   

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AfricIan

Bah - You've beaten me to it @Botswanadreams :angry: 

 

Only joking, it will be great to compare your week with ours - I'm about 2/3rds of the way through my photos so "with a bit of luck & a following wind" I'll get a TR started next week

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Hads

Looking forward to reading your report @Botswanadreams

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Botswanadreams
Posted (edited)

I'm looking forward to your report and of course to compare too @Africlan. I thought we met at the Zakouma air strip but our little plain arrived empty. I think we stayed perhaps one night together in N'Djamena in the same hotel but didn't know from each other. I'm just on our second morning drive with the pics. It'll be a long way to go through.  

Edited by Botswanadreams

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Game Warden
4 minutes ago, Botswanadreams said:

I think we stayed perhaps one night together in N'Djamena in the same hotel

 

This is why you should always introduce yourself as a Safaritalker :) If met by a puzzled look, no harm done.

 

Great to see more exposure for Zakouma and Chad.

 

Matt

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AfricIan

The original plans indicated that we would meet on the Zakouma airstrip @Botswanadreams but our plans got changed the day before we left when I got a call to say there was a "problem" with the light aircraft and rather than transferring straight from our flight from Addis onto the one to Zakouma we'd have to spend the night in N'djamena & go on the next day :(.

I think we probably did stay the night in the same hotel as you but @Game Warden's suggestion becomes less practicable in a hotel the size of the Hilton - I wasn't sure how your plans might have been affected and we'd already approached every likely looking candidate waiting to board in Addis and pre-immigration in N'djamena attempting to find other members of our own group ^_^

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Botswanadreams
Posted (edited)
19 hours ago, Game Warden said:

This is why you should always introduce yourself as a Safaritalker :) If met by a puzzled look, no harm done.

 

We arrived at Hilton around 5:30 pm on this day. The reception was busy with check in from guests of the Air France flight. We were supposed to meet with the company for the desert trip at the airport but I couldn't see any guy with my name only a company car in the parking area. So it means I had to get a contact at Hilten with them to discuss the start for the next morning. Too busy to look around for other Safaritalker. Sorry for that. Next time.   

Edited by Botswanadreams

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Botswanadreams

Thanks for the many "likes" in advance before we really started our adventure.

 

Zakouma National Park

 

Our first game drive took us to the wonderful region Rigueik.

 

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Great White Pelican in such a huge number we have never seen before in Africa

 

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Tiang in the flood plains around Rigueik

 

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Bohor Reedbuck

 

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A large herd of buffalo was startled by the sound of our approaching car. Sorry.

 

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Red-billed Quelea during there morning drink and a Black-headed Heron was flying through the flock.

 

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The typical pic for Camp Nomad guests in front of there tents

 

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Abyssinian Ground Hornbill

 

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Spur-winged Geese and Knob-billed Ducks along with some other water birds in incredible number

 

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Bull Elephants came to drink

 

What a great start in Zakouma! We started 05:30 am and came back 1 pm.

To make it short, not every game drive offered us this wealth of sightings. But there were many large and small highlights of which we like to report here below. 

 

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Defassa Waterbucks are often seen in the park

 

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Buffon's or Western Kob - another new species for us

 

Highlights of the second day were Central African Savannah Buffalos and Kordofan Giraffes.

 

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Central African Savannah Buffalos

One of the great herds of Zakouma was just about to cross in a long line our road on the way to Salamat River.

Although we were still far away, the front part of the herd immediately rushed off and disappeared in a cloud of dust in the bush. 

The second part of the herd stand, eyeing us intruders very suspicious. 

 

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Kordofan Giraffes at a mushy place with residual water to drink, where they also had to fight to get the hooves out of the mud - why do they do this, a question without an answer

 

 

This all and much more including a few short videos you can find in Chad 2019 Part I on our homepage.  You are invited to follow this link. Thanks.

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michael-ibk

A great start, and fortunately I can enjoy the unabdridged version on your homepage without having to battle with Google Translate. It seems there was still a lot of water in the Salamat, so they must have had a good rainy season?

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Botswanadreams

@michael-ibk It is a home game for you with the language of course.

We were told by the park manager that Zakouma got a lot of water coming in the last wet season but the problem he said was that the muddy black cotton soil areas were 40 centimeters under water. This was too much for the gras. It was dead after the water was gone.   

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AfricIan

Ahh, some very familiar sights @Botswanadreams, Google translate does a pretty good job.

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AfricIan

Interesting that you saw about 15 elephants near the headquarters, I take it that these were all bulls.  Other than the "mega herd" we only saw ~6 together once and they were all at the waterhole behind the camp managers house, the rest of the times we never saw more than 4 together.

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Botswanadreams
On 4/15/2019 at 5:55 PM, AfricIan said:

Google translate does a pretty good job.

Good to hear that Google translate works well. 

 

Yes our Elephants sights around the headquarter area at the end of our first morning drive were all bulls in different ages and moving in the same spot in three little groups.  

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Botswanadreams

To keep this report alive before I'm ready with the second part of Zakouma I would like to shear a short video from our Elephant encounter with half of the big famous herd. Please enjoy.

 

 

 

 

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lmonmm

Oh my goodness....so many babies in there... and some really teeny tiny ones.....truly a good sign that these beautiful ellies are feeling safe.

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AfricIan

Great to see them so relaxed @Botswanadreams, they were much more "on-edge" when we (eventually) caught up with them

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Botswanadreams
Posted (edited)

@Africlan I know we were very privileged to see half of the big herd in the midday time in the Salamat River. It was big luck with a great thanks to Steve our driver from African Parks. I know that the Camp Nomad guests the other day gave up in the afternoon without finding them and another car from Tinga got them afterwards for a short moment deeper in the bush. We were very lucky people on this day.   

 

Are you all in the mood for Elis and lion?

 

Part II from Chad is online with a lot more pics. You are very welcome for a visit. 

 

The big Elephant herd

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Kordofan Giraffes - always nice to see this critical endangered animal in bigger groups 

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Red-billed Queleas - this time on our site of the water

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Waterbirds in an incredible number

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A view to Camp Nomad

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The big meal 

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The left over from the big meal

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A larger herd of Buffalo 

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Chadian women and children on a game drive - very nice to met them

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More buffalo at Antigay

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Edited by Botswanadreams

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Botswanadreams

A breathtaking moment. 

It's only four minutes of half an hour.  

 

 

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Botswanadreams
Posted (edited)

Part III from our Chad tour is online. 

 

This is the last part from Zakouma but not the end of our journey. 

 

Beautiful buffalo with his colour 

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Our lion pride from Machtour again

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Saturday market in Kacha-Kacha

 

View to the animal market

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Traditional butchery next to the animal market - they sell the meat directly or it goes to food stalls on the market

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The normal market

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Village on the way to Kacha-Kacha

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From our last day in Zakouma

 

Lazy lions at Bahr Dikere

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Patas Monkey 

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The amazing bull elephants at Leon's house 

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Next time if you like we go the the Sahara together.

 

 

 

 

Edited by Botswanadreams

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Botswanadreams
Posted (edited)

First impressions of our desert tour

 

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Ennedi Massif: Natural and Cultural Landscape - our first day

 

 

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Guelta de Bachikele

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Arche de Julia

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The next part is online. Feel free to take a look.

 

Edited by Botswanadreams

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Alexander33

Thank you for sharing these glimpses of an area I really know nothing about.  What a fascinating trip. Looking forward to more. 

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kilopascal

I always love your reports @Botswanadreams I am going to save it for my 4 hours in an airport on Sunday. 

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gatoratlarge

I love these pics and reminders of Zakouma---Ennedi is very intriguing!

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CaroleE

Fantastic report @Botswanadreams Thank you.

Zakouma looks every bit as magical as I've heard. Wonderful to see the eles in your sighting were so relaxed.

Ennedi Massif looks beautiful and is somewhere I was not aware of so will go to your homepage to find out more.

Great photos throughout!

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