Sunday, August 19, 2012

Lake Nakuru National Park, Kenya

We've moved from Amboseli to Mt Kruger Safari Club, which was beautiful but our stay was too short, and from there we continued to Lake Nakuru National Park where we're spending 2 nights which is great for a change from one night here and one night there.  Following is just a brief overview
  • Chimpanzee conservation to rehabilitate orphaned chimps.  The chimps have mostly been kept as pets and there is a long process to introduce a new chimp into an existing pack
Practicing his yoga stretches
Just chillin'
  • We visited a blind Rhino called Baraka who lost one eye in a fight with another rhino, then an abscess developed on the remaining eye and he lost sight in that eye as well.  He is well cared for and they tell us he is happy.
Baraka is a big boy!
  • Our hotel at the Safari Club was built on the Equator and we had a ceremony to celebrate our crossing the Equator.  We were shown that the water really does go down a hole in different direction depending on which side of the Equator you are on
I have a foot in both Hemispheres
  • After a storm at Mt Kenya late in the afternoon, we headed off next morning to Lake Nakuru to see the Flamingos.  Unfortunately we’ve been told the flamingos have moved on because the algae on which they feed has been washed out of the lake due to unseasonal rain.  En route we passed village after village where the roadside markets were set up in the mud.  This mud sticks like glue and Paddy saw one lady trying to clean the mud from her shoes with a machete.  Don't know what might have happened if she slipped with the machete, more than mud might have come off.
  • Bogged! 
  • When we arrived at Lake Nakuru we visited an orphanage which was established and is now run by an Australian couple who sold their home and moved to Kenya to set up the baby orphanage.  This orphanage takes in orphans as babies and as the children have grown, so has the orphanage which now has over 90 children ranging in age from 17 years to the youngest who is currently around 6 months.   The children are happy and confident, and in a loving, caring environment which is obvious when you see their interaction with Mary.
We arrived just as the children were sitting down to lunch.
  • Our game ride this morning rewarded us not with multitudes of flamingos but multitudes of other animals.  A pride of 11 lions with 3 females and 8 cubs of various ages.  We watched these lions for a long time, moved on from them and then found them again after they had kept moving.  We took lots of photos of them and watched as they tried to cross some ground where Buffalo were grazing, but the buffalo chased the leader as she tried to find the best path to follow and it was interesting to see them backtrack away and try to find another, better path, all the while watched by an alert herd of antelope.
Family portrait

I love you my friend

Yes I know there's only 10, but the lookout was following some 200 metres
behind and separated from the rest of the group by our vehicles.  

Next we found 3 grazing white rhino by the side of the road.  We were no more than 6 feet away from them looking down on them from our prime viewing position.  

  • As we toured the lake road, we did see flamingos but they were so far away and few in number as we had been told.  
  • We saw zebra and their young, and sparring antelope, and sparring zebra.  We’ve really seen so many different animal behaviours it’s been fascinating.
Did you know Zebra young have brown stripes which gradually turn black

Tomorrow we head to the Masai Mara and the Wildebeest migration.  We’ve been told the migration is in full swing so it should be exciting.     That's all for now.

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