Team Two was greeted the first day with rhinos coming to the water hole at base camp (thanks Claire for the awesome picture!).
Luckily I was done with my briefing for the day, otherwise it would have been stiff competition. The team is now fully briefed and already in action in the field. Monday we did our driver training then checked the box traps. We decided to take the long way home and were rewarded with an extended encounter with a family group of sable antelope. Then just after that we saw not one, but TWO aardvark, and we have determined where they live, which is very exciting.
Tuesday morning the team learned how to change a flat tyre, and were already working well together. Vera brought us all to the box trap at Frankposten, where she gave a demonstration to the group on how the traps work. John volunteered to be the “animal” as long as we promised to release him. Claire did some housekeeping at the trap brushing off the soil so we would be able to see tracks the next day.
After the box trap demo we split up into three teams and went off to our activities: tracks and scats, elephants, and water hole. The elephant team was joined by scientist Joerg Melzheimer and treated to a memorable encounter with the elephants.
Tuesday afternoon the box trap team also found excitement with a female warthog caught in the JM trap. This morning a different box trap team found more excitement with a porcupine in the Frankposten trap. The morning waterhole team was treated to a myriad of animals at Frankposten, including some juvenile giraffes taking a drink. In the afternoon the elephant team had a long encounter with the elephants and was amazed to see the 1 meter branches that the elephants were breaking off the shrubs and eating. The afternoon waterhole team went to Boma, our tree-house hide, and had an interesting afternoon despite Andrew being allergic to the tree they were sitting in. The afternoon camera trap team collected SD cards and looked at pictures and saw heaps of cows but no carnivores in the pictures.
Update from our working holiday volunteering with leopards, elephants and cheetahs in Namibia, Africa