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WHAT & WHERE IS KULAFUMBI?

1724670-982768-thumbnail.jpg 'Kulafumbi' is our family home in Kenya, East Africa. 'Kulafumbi' is a play on the Kiswahili words "kula vumbi", which mean "eat dust", because it was so hot and dusty building our house in this remote, wild, wonderful place. Kulafumbi borders the Tsavo National Park - with no fences between us and the Park, the wildlife comes and goes of its own free will and treats our land as its own, which is exactly how we like it. In turn, we provide a protected area for the wild animals to do as they please. This protected area also creates an important buffer for the river, which forms the boundary between us and the park.
House & Land - more info
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ON-GOING SPECIES COUNT

1829439-992202-thumbnail.jpg Look how many species of animals & birds we've spotted to date at Kulafumbi:

MAMMALS: 43+
REPTILES &
AMPHIBIANS: 18+++

BIRDS: 199+
INSECTS: Too many to count

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SAFARI SANCTUARY: the conservation game

The fabulous new Facebook game that supports conservation efforts in Africa!

Build your own wildlife orphanage in Africa's wilderness - adopt sick or lonely orphaned baby elephants, rhino, meerkats, buffalo and many other animals - nurse them back to health and give them a second chance in life!

This is not a zoo game! Once your animals are big and strong enough to look after themselves, release them back into the wild where they belong! Fly on animal rescue missions in your helicopter, chase evil poachers, remove nasty animal traps, enjoy incredible graphics, 3D dynamic, interactive animals and the real sounds of the African savannah. This game looks like Africa, feels like Africa, in fact it virtually IS Africa! There's not another game quite like this one, a trans-continental creation developed between the African wilderness and a digital games studio in UK.

PLAY NOW! or if you prefer, LEARN MORE ABOUT THE GAME, WHAT INSPIRED ITS CREATION AND WHICH CONSERVATION CHARITIES BENEFIT FROM IT.

Kenyans for Wildlife

KENYANS FOR WILDLIFE
is a dynamic, interesting Facebook group which discusses wildlife issues in Kenya and is having an incredible effect on conservation in this country. You don't have to be Kenyan - this group is open to everyone. If you care about conservation in Africa, please do join. 

JOIN NOW - KENYANS FOR WILDLIFE.

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"We are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams;
World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world for ever, it seems..."

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« 10th November 2007 | Main | 4th November 2007 »
Wednesday
Nov212007

5th November 2007

[PHOTOS FOR THIS ENTRY ARE COMING SOON...IN THE MEANTIME, WHY NOT CHECK OUT THE PHOTO STORIES I'VE ALREADY CREATED?]

There must have been some rain upcountry for the river level rose fractionally last night – great news for the hippos and the fish, who will welcome the extra fresh water. It also allowed the channel of the river to flow, from where we normally pump water for the house.

But disaster for the nesting Plovers – their nest was washed away, all four eggs gone. This morning the Plover pair is there, in the area of the nest, pecking around in the sand for insects as usual. I wonder whether birds can feel sadness or loss? Or do they merely accept the loss of their nest as “just one of those things”? When I went down to the beach later on, to see if anything at all remained of the nest (it didn’t), the parents were still acting as if the nest were still there, trying to distract my attention, and crouching down in the sand, trying to trick me into thinking that the nest was in a different location. So, it seems that their instincts are still controlling their behaviour – either that, or they are in denial and have not yet fully accepted that their eggs have gone.

By midday, the river level had subsided again, and the nest site was visible again, but of course by then it was too late – there was nothing left. It will be interesting to see whether this Plover pair nest again this season, and whether next time, they choose a spot on the mainland and not on a precarious island.

Happier news from the other Plover family, further upstream – their two little chicks are still safe and well. Today, we saw them with their parents in a green swampy patch of ground near the river’s edge – a perfect place for tiny young Plovers to feed themselves, as insects will be plentiful and easy to catch there.

With their tiny size and still flightless wings, their own camouflage and their parents’ distraction techniques are their only defence against predators. You can see how perfectly camouflaged the chicks are when they crouch down, completely still, in the grass.

I photographed the breathtakingly beautiful flowers of the delonix elata tree today – the Delonix trees have just come out in bloom in the last day or so.

The Nubian Woodpecker was also busy in the large acacia tree to the right of the house, striking with its bright red crown and cheek patches. I was able to photograph the brilliant yellow Black Headed Oriole. There were also dozens of other small birds hopping around in the thicket below the big trees – I need to take our bird book down there, to try to identify them – until then, they get recorded as LBJs (ie Little Brown Jobs), of which there are many!

The Dikkops were down on the beach as usual (today my father saw eight of them in a group together), and the Egyptian Goose family were there too, near the old Plovers’ nest, with their own six goslings now almost large enough to be mistaken for the adults at first glance. They’re really exercising their wings now, practicing flapping them and strengthening them all the while – it won’t be long now before they start to fly. The parents are also starting to leave the goslings on their own for extended periods of time now, during which the goslings initially panic – all part of the learning curve before they “fly the coop”, as it were.

[PHOTOS FOR THIS ENTRY ARE COMING SOON...IN THE MEANTIME, WHY NOT CHECK OUT THE PHOTO STORIES I'VE ALREADY CREATED?]

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