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Day 5 (Saturday, 28th February)

     Ishasha

Ishasha Ishasha


HipposThe famed possessions of thisreserve are the tree climbing lions. I'm not sure why this elevates them above lesser ground dwelling lions, but there must be a reason. Yet it only took us a short time before we saw them, lazing around on a horizontal branch. The two females were certainly lions, and were in a tree, so let's tick them off. There are occasional signs which state that there should be no off road driving, for fear of a $150 fine and "management", but we had somehow picked up one of the armed guards from the nearby exit point for the park proper, and after much chuntering between themselves, they escorted us and the three other vehicles to closer inspection with them present. This park also held the last of the Topi to be seen, and the Impala had been replaced by copious Kob. There were some birds in this fairly open bushy area, but not great amounts, but still some of interest. Before seeing the lions, an adult and juvenile Palmnut Vulture flew in front of us and happily perched in a nearby tree. On the roadside, small collections of finches included a full breeding plumaged Pin-tailed Wydah, seemingly weighed down by the unfeasibly long tail. White-browed Coucal was very impressive. Soaring overhead were 2 separate Western Banded Snake Eagles,  showing the distinctive tail patterns, although the banding on the lower belly was hard to see. Lunch was spent in the park, tucking into a more than substantial picnic put up by the hotel, and located on a table set up beside a small river on the Congo border. 2 pairs of Hippopotamus lounged in the river, blissfully unaware of their dual nationality!
 

Lions Topi Kob
The tree climbing Lions Topi Kob
Baboon African Pied Wagtail Golden-breasted Bunting
Olive Baboon African Pied Wagtail Golden-breasted Bunting
Palmnut Vulture Red-breasted Swallow Mountain Wagtail
Palm-nut Vulture

Red-breasted Swallow (on the journey to Ishasha)

Mountain Wagtail (on the journey to Ishasha)

     Queen Elizabeth National Park


What a coup - we arrived at thepark mid afternoon, and for most of the time were the only car that we saw in then park. We had passed an impressive collection of 7 large Elephants close to on the way, and our guide had asked of we wanted to go to the accommodation and then relax, or do a game drive first? I have heard of some silly questions but . . . . . ! The highlight here is probably the good population of lions, which we had to keep an eye out for. This is not a surprise, judging by the large numbers of Kob, and lesser numbers of Waterbuck and Warthog. However, we did come across 2 families of lions. The first were spread out and had a half hearted go at a passing Warthog. The second pride were right next to the track, and included a trio of young cubs, who were intent on fun rather than growing up. When most of the pride had gone, leaving the head female and cubs, a lone young male approached, and the female was not happy with its presence. There was also a decent number of Elephants here, of various ages. This location offered a good selection of raptors, with Pallid Harriers, Long-crested Eagle, Lappet-faced Vulture, and a pair of Grey Kestrels trying to pillage what looked like an out of date Kamerkop nest. A pair of Black-headed Gonoleks next to the track flew behind us, but then disappeared into the denser bush - another later was marginally more accommodating. More Pin-tailed Wydahs bobbed around near to the road, and it was again satisfying to see that they had reached breeding plumage.

Queen Elizabeth rain clouds
Elephant Brown Snake-eagle Grey Kestrel
Elephant (on journey to the park) Brown Snake-eagle Grey Kestrel
Long-crested Eagle Water Thick-knee Wattled Lapwing
Long-crested Eagle Water Thick-knee African Wattled Lapwing
White-browed Coucal Elephant Waterbuck
White-browed Coucal African Elephants Waterbuck
Lion Lion cubs
Male Lion Lion cubs

Home

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Day 5

Day 6

Day 7 Day 8 Day 9

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