Cape Buffalo Falls to Lions

Trip Start Jan 18, 2012
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Trip End Feb 04, 2012


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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

January 25, 2012 – Day 5

We are up early. We leave for a game drive at 7:30 A.M. but breakfast first. The chef has the skillets ready and makes whatever type of omelet we want. I nearly drink them out of fresh squeezed orange juice; Beth does the same with their Passion Fruit juice.

Today, we see giraffe, Cape buffalo, hyrax, mongoose, impala, Grant's gazelle, dik-diks, Thompson gazelle, water buck, hippo, crocodile, baboon and black faced vervet monkey.

The high light of the day occurs when we arrive shortly after two lions kill a Cape buffalo. We cannot see how large a buffalo is down due to the tall grass. But, we can see the lions ripping off chunks of meat.

Strangely, the herd of buffalo stays close to the site of the kill. It is as if they are mourning their loss. After the lions eat their fill and start to leave, the buffalo edge closer to their dead friend. They are confirming their loss. Once satisfied, several very large female buffalo chase the lions away from the herd. This is a breeding herd comprised of females, young males and babies. Our guide said the lions would not have dared attack the herd if mature male buffalo were present.

The tsetse flies are as bad near the buffalo as they had been in the middle of the Great Migration. No wonder the buffalo are irritable. The flies drive them crazy. The Deet repellant we brought worked well for us.

We are back at the Bilila Lodge for lunch. I have the best hamburger I’ve eaten in years. Dessert is three flavors of homemade ice cream. Beth and I have been really pleased with the quality of Tanzanian fruits and vegetables. The lettuce and tomatoes are far superior to anything we’ve had from U.S. supermarkets in years.

We have the afternoon off. I spend several hours catching up on my notes while watching families of baboons and warthogs at the watering hole. The young ones in both families are playing with their siblings and having a big time. I pull out the binoculars and find a number of waterbuck grazing generally in our direction.

Our Tauck Director holds a meeting at 6 P.M. to review plans for tomorrow when we will head back to Arusha and on to Kenya.
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