Mittwoch, 13. Dezember 2017

Chimp trekking in East Africa

CHIMP TREKKING – where to find them in the wild.

Chimpanzee trekking is much more affordable than Gorilla trekking. Between 75 -150 USD is a Chimp permit in East Africa. The might be harder to spot than Gorillas but it´s amazing to observe there “human” habits in the wild.

Best place to spot them is probably Kibale Forest in Uganda. The forest has the highest number of primates in the world. The chimp viewing might be less intimidate than in Tanzania but there is a plenty of other primates to see as well like grey cheeked mongabey, red tailed monkey and different type of Colobus monkeys. Permit for non –resident goes for 150 USD and East African residents 27 USD.

The Mahale Mountains in Western Tanzania rising over Lake Tanganyika and are the most dramatic and scenic Chimp spot. Travelers can only reach there by boat or plane and have to spend a few days to spot them. Permit goes for 80 USD for non- residents and 2,50 USD for East African residents.

Less dramatic than Mahale and easier to reach but involve also a boat ride at Lake Tanganyika are the chimps in Gombe, Western Tanzania. Jane Goodall´s documentary brought the reserve to prominence. Depending on the season trekking here can be strenuous and involving long hikes. Like in Mahale the chimps offering possibilities for close viewing. Non – residents pay 100 USD and East African resident 5 USD per permit.

Freitag, 27. Oktober 2017

Omieri – a mysterioiusly huge snake that brings good luck

Omieri, is a snake rooted in Luo myths, a snake that lives in Lake Victoria and appears on land in times of drought to summon the rains.

In 1987, a massive python appeared in Nyakach, near a woman’s home. The Nyakach people immediately recognized the good luck charm and hoped that the snake would bring rain to the dry land.. Everyone loved her. The children reportedly massaged her beautiful black and tan back while men and women would lavish bread and Ugali on her. Some even left prized young goats and chicken unattended for her to pick up. An MP would insist she was a star attraction.
People came from far and wide to see the snake including international tourists. The Kenya Wildlife Service was concerned about the whereabouts of the snake and rightfully so. 

Sometime later, a villager burnt the grass surrounding the snake in a bid to show visitors its whereabouts at night, the snake got burnt and sustained injuries and was transferred to the animal orphanage in Nairobi for treatment and recovery. The Nyakach water supply and a local road have had serious problems since Omieri went to an orphanage in Nairobi. Worried residents soon called for her return “home”.  They wrote to KWS: “Omieri is our gift from God, given through our ancestors’ spirits to bring good tidings. We hope to get a good harvest, rainfall and a good omen after seeing our serpent. We beseech you to hear our cries and return our snake before we face untold suffering and a curse from our ancestors.”

Omieri was moved back to Kisumu where she died. She was given a proper burial, with a condolence book placed at the Kariokor Social Hall.
But she reappeared again…

In 2003, a 16 foot long python appeared in Wasare, Nyakach. The snake had come to the marshes to lay eggs. Residents gave it all manner or food to eat including Ugali, bread and goats. Although the snake rarely ate, the residents continued to revere it. The snake had security from the Kenya Wildlife Service and local youth, to ensure that no harm came to it. It is not clear what happened to the snake, it probably moved away from the area after some time.
In February 2006, a python appeared in Kano, another area of Nyakach. Residents of the area celebrated its sighting as a sign of good luck as there had been a long spell of drought. It is unclear whether there was any rainfall or good luck that was associated with the sighting of the snake.

By now it should be pretty obvious to you that Omieri is not one snake, but a type of snake. Any fully developed python, which appears in the vicinity of the Nyakach area especially near the lake, will probably be labeled as Omieri.

                                       And so Omieri lives on. A tale ever so fascinating!

Montag, 16. Oktober 2017

Safari impressions from Maasai Mara

Maasai Mara Game Reserve, so named to mean the “spotted plains” in Maa language. This is home to the greatest concentration of large mammals and is widely recognized as Africa’s ultimate wildlife reserve. The park is famous for its annual migration of wildebeest. 

During your stay, you have the opportunity to explore this great reserve in depth. You may see elephant, giraffe, prides of lion, and thousands of impala, topi, grants and Thomson's gazelle. Birds are prolific including immigrants, 450 bird species have been recorded among them 57 birds of prey. 

Ask us for your safari experience!