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A Fleeting Glimpse of Zambia (SLNP, Livingstone)


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Thanks to everyone for your comments!   @@pault Exhaustion/exhilaration certainly sounds a lot nicer than incompetence, so let's go with that! I did meet with more success in later birding attempts

Thanks for all the nice comments and for following along so far.   @@Geoff I must agree with @@JohnR; I hope you're still able to go!   The following picture may not have an equal impact on everyo

Glad to see the chili sauce is well known, even if not universally adored!   In the morning we came across a group of lions. We would encounter these lions a few times throughout our time in South L

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Funnily enough @@Marks I was the only one brave (or foolish) enough to try the worms, my wife's excuse was that she'd already had our children so didn't need "proteining up" and the steaks looked far more appetising! The children (13 & 11) were equally reluctant to try them and as we'd been forcing Paludrine & chloroquine tablets down them for a fortnight I didn't feel it right to insist they "try something new"

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Well that was certainly something different @@Marks - straight out of left field I'd say!


But Bravo for organising that dinner from your purchases and for being on the trail of the mopane worm and following it through to your culinary conclusion back home. Like @@CaroleE I'm amazed the worms passed muster at customs.


Much enjoyed another walk around the Falls this time through your eyes and camera. Thanks.

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After visiting the market, we did one of the many "adventurous" activities available in Livingstone: a visit to the Devil's Pool, where you can swim and walk right at the edge of the falls. This is one advantage of visiting at this time of year, as this is only possible when the water level is lower.


Some views from the pool and from the area around it:










That evening we returned to the lovely Chundukwa and enjoyed the fruits of our shopping with a superbly cooked fish dinner.




On our last morning in Zambia we took a little motorboat out onto the Zambezi and had coffee on some rocks in the river, as well as another quick swim.


A great sunrise:






Rock Pratincoles:






The river all to ourselves:




And finally, as we approached the Chundukwa dock on our way back, we noticed that elephants had returned to the lodge's garden. These are not the best pictures, but they are a nice memory of what felt like a fond farewell from this wonderful species.











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As I mentioned previously, this trip was a real eye-opener for me as far as birding goes.



Little Bee-eater

Southern Carmine Bee-eater

White-fronted Bee-eater

Tropical Boubou

Terrestrial Brownbul

Dark-capped (Black-eyed) Bulbul

Lizard Buzzard

Grey Crowned Crane

Pied Crow

Cape Turtle Dove

Emerald-spotted Wood Dove

Laughing Dove

Namaqua Dove

Fork-tailed Drongo

African Fish Eagle

Western Banded Snake Eagle

Great Egret

Red-billed Firefinch

Grey Go-Away Bird (Lourie)

Egyptian Goose


Helmeted Guineafowl (finally! such an iconic species)


Black-headed Heron

Grey Heron

African Hoopoe

Crowned Hornbill

Southern Ground Hornbill

Southern Red-billed Hornbill

Trumpeter Hornbill

African Sacred Ibis

Hadeda Ibis

African Jacana

Brown-hooded Kingfisher

Giant Kingfisher

Grey-headed Kingfisher

Yellow-billed Kite

Blacksmith Lapwing (Plover)

White-crowned Lapwing (Plover)

Lilian's Lovebird

Red-faced Mousebird

Square-tailed (Mozambique) Nightjar

Red-billed Oxpecker

Yellow-billed Oxpecker

Rock Pratincole

Green-winged Pytilia

Red-billed Quelea

White-browed Robin-Chat

Lilac-breasted Roller

Common Sandpiper

Wood Sandpiper

Grey-headed Bushshrike

Red-necked Spurfowl

Greater Blue-eared Starling

Meves's Starling

African Openbill

Marabou Stork

Saddlebilled Stork

Yellow-billed Stork

Variable Sunbird

Wire-tailed Swallow

Water Thick-knee

Schalow's Turaco

African Pied Wagtail

Blue Waxbill

Whitebrowed Sparrow-Weaver

Green (Red-billed) Wood Hoopoe


A modest list for many STers, no doubt, but an achievement for us, especially for a short safari. The handy Sasol app was a great way to keep track of these and should continue to be useful in the future.


Another first, despite this being my fourth trip to Africa and the third exclusively dedicated to safari, was the sound of lions roaring. This unmistakably powerful sound came drifting across the Zambezi, from Zimbabwe to our Chundukwa chalet. It had become something of a running joke between us - that we had seen plenty of lions but never heard this wonderful sound. Well, no more!


That about wraps it up...thanks to everyone for your encouragement and contributions!

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Glad that you enjoyed your visit to Zambia. Thanks for sharing :)

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Thanks for a great report, I've enjoyed every bit of it.

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Wow can't believe you had never heard lions roaring! Great trip report and great photos. Just curious but where are you thinking of going on you're next African trip.

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@@dlo So many ideas! Originally we were going to visit Southern Tanzania but ended up choosing Zambia instead. Right now we are talking about combining Madikwe (really want to see dogs for the first time) with Mashatu, as we've never been to Botswana and it seems like combining them should be fairly convenient. But that won't be for a little while, so plans may change.


As far as roaring lions go - tell me about it! It was about time! :P

Edited by Marks
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Hopefully you'll enjoy my dog pictures from Luangwa, and not be to jealous :) Mashutu is under light consideration for me next year

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  • 2 weeks later...

"it's better to go on a brief safari than none at all, especially when a brief one is about all you can afford"

Excellent philosophy!


I enjoyed the mud bath. That lazy hyena shot is a classic!


Being a spice wimp, I'll pass on your chili sauce but I'm sure I'd like the pecan pie on the menu.


On page 2 it's back into the mud again! Nice idea to enjoy the dark and the silence at night. I spied the hoopoe, my favorite. I believe our starling id is right.

Love the stretching elephant, working hard for his dinner.


Cool camera trap shots and even a bushbaby! The camera trap video was a very clever idea. Lots goes on when we are unaware.


Those lions on the kill shots in the night raise the hair on my neck.


I'm caught up through p. 3.

Edited by Atravelynn
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Thanks @@Atravelynn for your kind words and for singling out several specifics! You are right that so much goes on that we can't be there to see...almost enough to make you want to stay up all night!

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No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency--are you a fan too? I love that series!


The mopane worm dish is quite attractive looking. I admire you for giving it a taste, which I don't think I could do. Because of the high protein, abundance, and lack of resources required for insects I do believe they will be the food of the future.


Besides the worms, you have quite a few nice insect photos. Who spotted the mantis?


Very powerful falls shots. So is the photo of Norman Carr's simple grave.


Your panoramas are lovely. I have a habit of humming to myself, "That's a nice panorama" to the tune of "She's a Bad Mama Jama" by Carl Carlton from back in 1981. Looking at your photos in front of the rhinos or on the river rocks, I see this may be way before your time. Despite its chauvinistic lyrics, it's some good funk.


Much success with those rhinos!

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Marks....I am just rereading your trip report and I think that your post and photos on Sept. 8 are the sighting that we saw when we first left the Mfuwe Lodge the morning of August 20 to go to Chindeni. We heard lions among other other calls/noises early in the morning. We had just started the drive and came across a lioness on the kill. The others were nearby. We counted three males and about twenty females. Does this sound right? We saw her walking off with the intestines. Glad that you had such a great trip!post-17651-0-20520800-1444624612_thumb.jpg

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Sorry this got away from me for so long again!
The lions feeding on the hippo is fascinating, I also read the AfGeo article and was going to point it out had you not. Such interesting behaviour, really hope the ZCP look into it / make a publication.
The worms look interesting...I'd try them! Not much of a spice person but I'm always up for new things in the kitchen!
Finally, awesome shots of the falls. :)

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For some reason I missed your last post of your trip report. Now I have caught up with it.

This most excellent trip continued right to the end. Devil's Pool looks terrific. As does the river and the sunrise. What a great way to finish your trip.....even better that you had it to yourselves.


Particularly like the first ele photo in the Chundukwa garden. Partially hidden by the tree. A quite fitting adieu to Zambia!

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Thanks, everyone!


@@Atravelynn I do love those books. I have no idea how he writes them so quickly, but they are always a really pleasant diversion. I wish I could say that I had spotted the mantis, but I was probably more likely to step on it unawares. The song is slightly before my time but I've heard it, at least. :P I will pass along the panorama compliments to my partner, as they are all hers.


@@marg I did not see the whole pride together if there were so many of them, but the time and location certainly seem to match up. Love your photo, too; such a jaunty pose as the lion carries off its spoils. Looking forward to hearing more about your trip!


@@Big_Dog Glad you are following along! Agreed that the behavior is really interesting. If you see any further articles or anything, do pass them along! As for those mopane worms, I've still got about a half a bag left...need to find another recipe...


@@CaroleE The elephants' adieu - has a nice ring to it! But that was my thought, as well. Couldn't ask for a more relaxing and pleasant finale, really.

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Mopane worms! You brave man. I just had to flip through the pix very fast because I have this things about worms and snakes......


But kudos for buying local and supporting the local markets!

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@@Marks - What a treat this TR was - it has just the right ingredients (except for those icky worms, haha - surprised the sniffer dogs let you through customs!) - lovely images, even lovelier writing, and the camera trap add-ons were fantastic. Flatdogs looks wonderful - and that day and night ele parade in front of your tent is reason alone for staying there. Those bathing ele photos are fantastic.


You got to see so much stuff, but I am also a fan of the landscape shots. I have mentioned this before in other SLNP reports, but those are very Mana like mahogany groves and the same kind of special light filtering through, complete with ele under tree. That hyena looks like my dog in his favorite pose too - nothing wrong with him at all, just an oddie. But that other hyena looks like it had a lucky escape - the snare wound looks quite bad.


I've been away from ST for such long periods that I'm still not completely accustomed to that new bearded face in your avatar and feel like I'm reading someone else's report :D

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Thank you for a really enjoyable report - including a cooking lesson!

It is interesting the way one gets into seeing birds - our level of interest has certainly increased.

Very good photos throughout - and a lovely farewell from your final elephant.

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Thanks @@Kitsafari @@Sangeeta @@TonyQ!


I'd love to make it to Mana Pools someday to see more of that special light.


In the meantime I'm even doing a bit of birding at home to tide me over...

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  • 4 weeks later...

I think you need to look at image #4 in the above post, I'm fairly certain I can see eight rhino (or bits of) in that image so may be you did get them all at once.

Yes sir, 8 of 'em!

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