We arrived in Kasane, Botswana yesterday afternoon just in time for an afternoon boat cruise on the Chobe River followed by an open vehicle drive in the Chobe Park this morning. Our accommodation is at the Bakwena Lodge situated on the river itself and the name Bakwena means crocodile in Tswana, the official language of Botswana.
The Chobe River forms one of the borders of the Chobe National Game Park and is known for the high concentration of elephants during the winter months from May to September. During our boat cruise yesterday we saw hundreds of elephants, buffalos and waterbuck on the main island in the river and they had all swam across the river during the late morning to feed on the abundant grasses that grow there. As the rains will only start at the end of October there is very little grass left in the park so any animal that can swim across does so. We are hoping to see the animals crossing tomorrow. The bird life is outstanding in the Chobe with a wide variety of wadding birds and for the real birding enthusiast the summer months are the time to be here to see the migratory birds arrive. We finished off the cruise with a drink in hand watching the sun set and it was a perfect end to our first night in Botswana.
This morning had us up at 5am for our game drive and while it was very quiet in terms of game viewing to start with we did see a lot of bird activity and our patience was rewarded with a sighting of three male lions, one still sitting at the kill. The sighting of a number of black backed jackals was also exciting as we had not seen them when we were at the Timbavati. Another treat this morning was watching a small breeding herd of elephants who had formed a circle, all facing out and on the ground were a couple of very small baby elephants asleep. Our guide told us that the herd does this to protect their young and will remain in the circle until the babies wake and get to their feet before moving off. This was something special to watch.
The temperature has now risen to 32 degrees so it is time for a dip in the pool.