This morning there were no hippo tracks coming out of the river in any of the usual places, which we can see from our balcony. Normally we see plenty of evidence of them leaving the river at night in search of food. I wonder if their absence last night is because, for so long with the river low and no rain, the hippos have been restricted to relatively small areas, including the area around our house. Now with the change in the weather, they have more freedom and have decided to seek fresh grazing grounds. (Who can blame them, after all this time?)
We haven’t seen "our" Egyptian Goose family for two days. I wonder where they have got to, and if they are OK? The Fish Eagles too have deserted this stretch of river, not returning to their usual perches opposite the house. We see them from time to time, passing by, but they don’t seem to hang around for long. Perhaps with the changes in the river levels, they have to change their hunting grounds? There was a Falcon hunting the Swifts in front of the house this morning – either a Lanner or a Peregrine Falcon – the former probably.
It rained heavily and steadily for a couple of hours around midday, and the flying ants are now out in force. Tonight we will be inundated.
One of the most amazing sights in this dry grey country is the blooming of the wild lilies – from one day to the next, they appear in all their glory – clean, pure and white, bursting forth from rich green leaves. I’ll let the images speak for themselves…
This afternoon, we went back to the see how “our” Spur-winged Plover chicks were getting on. We found them both in fine fettle, long legged and extremely adventurous. The parent birds seemed calm and relaxed to let the chicks wander a long way away from them. It as amazing to see how much they had grown, both in size and confidence…also how much further ahead the older chick was in terms of size and plumage – what a difference a day makes. It was quite an extraordinary feeling, watching the younger chick in particular, and knowing I was there when it hatched out of its shell, and now here I was watching it strong and courageous, foraging for food and totally in its element. The chicks are 16 days old today.
[PHOTOS FOR THIS DAY WILL BE POSTED SOON. UNTIL THEN, YOU CAN TAKE A LOOK AT THE PHOTO STORIES ALREADY CREATED.]