October is the best time to visit parks in Zambia if you can take the heat. October usually starts off hot and ends up wet. Our rain normally comes once a year when the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone moves south from Central Africa. By the end of the month rain had fallen.
Although the trees and bushes have had little or no rain for months, many of them push out their flowers in October. The seeds will then be ready to drop and germinate during the rains.
In the towns, the flamboyants and jacaranda trees are flowering glamming up our streets. Both these trees are exotics for us but are commonly planted as avenue trees.
Within the parks the grass is flat, the waterholes are drying up and all the wildlife is forced to drink from the remaining pools or from the river. This makes it easy for visitors to see the wildlife – quite often it is enough to relax at the lodge and watch what comes to visit.
The impala have already started to drop their young. The wildebeest too, especially at Liuwa Plains which witnessed the start of its large migration of wildebeest and zebra followed by their arch predator – the hyena.
The bats have arrived at Kasanka – several million of them – and they will stay to gorge themselves on the fruit on the trees, notably the wild loquat.
This is the time I call the silly season for much of the birdlife. The males have donned their breeding plumage and are feeling all puffed up to attract the females. There is lots of chasing in and out of trees and bushes.
The carmine bee-eaters have arrived from the coast of East Africa and are busy at their nests in holes in the river banks rearing their young but they must hurry. When the rain comes and the rivers fill, these nests could be flooded. Carmines are found in several parks but the most known are those in Lower Zambezi and South Luangwa.
The osprey too has arrived after its journey from the north of Europe. It is a journey fraught with danger as it flies thousands of kilometres to overwinter in Zambia. They are often confused with our resident Fish eagle, but you can notice the difference by the way they catch fish. The Fish eagle flies down to the river; catches the fish in its talons and flies off again. The osprey will dive right into the water.
Now, from around the regions.
The Explorer Club
Whitewater rafting through the gorges below the Victoria Falls is one of the best runs in the world. Each rapid has its own name like Oblivion, Commercial Suicide, Three Little Pigs or how about The Washing Machine …
The river is low in October making the ‘ride’ a spectacular experience.
Our vervet monkeys are having their young and can be found loitering around the car park – probably loitering with intent, so keep those car windows wound up.
Oh what a beautiful morning.
What better way to see the elephants of Zambezi National Park than from a microlight with Batoka Sky and Livingstone’s Adventure!
Our terrible food can also be eaten on this horrid spot moored along the underwhelming Zambezi River.
Every course apologetically delivered by canoe.
Sometimes accompanied by a choir (woefully in tune)
Then there is the distraction of all those irritating milky way stars… which we can never do anything about.
The entire dinner date is generally a complete disappointment.
Life cannot always be good.
Livingstone Backpackers Hostel & Campsite
This is all you need to see on the internet today! Yoga-tta respect these skills
Jollyboys Backpackers Lodge
Searching for a high adrenaline adventure?!
We’ve got you sorted 🙂 How about trying Tandem Skydiving, with an exhilarating 30+ seconds free fall from 10’000 ft??!!
KAFUE NATIONAL PARK
Nanzhila Plains Safari Camp
Sable, Roan, Zebra, Hartebeest and Bushpig… just a few highlights from this morning’s game drive!
The Mobile Safari Company
Lion ,kudu,bush pig ,broard billed roller from last week .off tomorrow for a quick 3 day trip
Kaingu Safari Lodge
A grey day and lots of rain here. We managed to stay dry for the first hour… Let’s just say warm showers and hot tea was needed at the end.
Lunch was interrupted today with the alarm call from a Puku antelope many others facing down towards Hippo Bay Camp. We hurriedly jumped into the Land Rover. Within one minute we sighted 5 Painted Dogs at the edge of the lake. How lucky can you be to have a backdrop of more than 100 elephants. John Tynan
Mukambi Safari Lodge
We are nearing the end of the operational season for Mukambi Plains Camp. The plains have dried up but, compared to previous years, there is still plenty of water present. The elephants are creeping closer to camp now, slowly making their way to the fresh figs dropping from our large fig tree in the center of the camp. Wildlife sightings have been abundant and exciting as always. Guest Photography by Valérie Michel
More wonderful images from Emmanuel Sauti in the Busanga Plains as we wind up our 2017 season in anticipation of the summer inundation…
~ Mr Busanga, Jr – King of all he surveys
Jeffrey & McKeith Safaris
on lions …
One of the regulars greeting Simon the Chiawa Camp GM …
Royal Zambezi Lodge
Keep going!! Its nearly the weekend
Photograph: Mark and Bronwyn Gallagher
Cheers to the end of the second day of Tiger Cup 2017.
Baines’ River Camp
Zambezi scenes. Here are a few of our favorite moments on the magical river. Looking at the pics, you can almost hear the morning wail of the fish eagles, the puffs of the hippos and the still quiet of the evening just after the sun goes down. Join us!
Sausage Tree Camp
sipping on a G&T, watching Elephants cross the Sausage tree channel at sunset, this is life on the Zambezi…
Bushcamp Company, South Luangwa
You must know it feels…when you have that annoying itch in a place you just can’t reach…
Robin Pope Safaris
Our mobile team was recently treated to a thrilling experience when they arrived at camp to set up and found two male lions lying on the beach in front of the camp!
After a few minutes, the lions proceeded to cross the shallow waters of the Mupumadzi River and kept a watchful eye on the team from the other side.
Time + Tide Norman Carr Safaris
October may mean pumpkins to some, but for us it means carmine bee-eater season!
Crowned cranes showing off their amazing plumages
‘Cheeky’ carefully stepping over the barrier around the tree and guarding the office.
Remote Africa Safaris
Flying with our Cessna 210 aircraft isn’t just a mere transfer -see the Luangwa from the air
While having a siesta in camp…
Save the Rhino International
Meet Emmanuel. A boy who dreams of becoming a ranger and saving the black rhino in Zambia.
North Luangwa’s award-winning conservation education programme, Lolesha Luangwa, has taught him all about the ecosystem around him and taken him on his first visit to see a rhino.
North Luangwa National Park is home to Zambia’s only population of black rhinos, which grew from a terrifying zero after the species was reintroduced to the area.
North Luangwa Conservation Project
Tusk Awards for African wildlife conservation announced
Two South Africans, a Malawian and a Zambian have won the prestigious 2017 Tusk Awards, presented to them at a ceremony attended by guests of honour, Nobel Peace Prize winners Emeritus Archbishop Desmond Tutu and FW de Klerk, and former South African and Mozambican First Lady, Graca Machel, in Cape Town on October 4.
Solomon Chidunuka of Zambia’s North Luangwa National Park was the joint winners of the Tusk Wildlife Ranger Award sponsored by a private US Foundation with a grant of £10 000 each. This award gives international recognition to the men and women who face danger every day to protect Africa’s wildlife.
Kasanka Trust Zambia
AND IT’S OFFICIAL… Bat Season 2017 has begun! The Minister of Tourism and Arts, Hon Charles Banda has officially opened the season, the trusty guides are ready and waiting and the bats are wowing guests already.
Nkamba Bay Lodge
Elephants! Mummies, babies everyone having fun in the water in the Bay and at Nkamba Bay Lodge!
Ndole Bay Lodge
This mornings beautiful sunrise over Lake Tanganyika
Frankfurt Zoological Society
Located on the Zambian shores of Lake Tanganyika, an aquatic world in itself, Nsumbu is a wildlife refuge, a unique ecosystem and the youngest of Frankfurt Zoological Society’s projects in Africa.
Liuwa Plain National Park
Exciting news! We have started seeing the first wildebeest calves of the season!
Don’t miss out on an opportunity to experience the famous Liuwa migration! There is still accommodation availability at our community campsites and new tented camp from now until mid-December.
The reintroduced buffalo population is on the rise in Liuwa Plain National Park in Zambia. Locally extinct in 2004, African Parks introduced approximately 70 buffalo to Liuwa when we assumed management of the park. Wildebeest populations were also in steep decline, a consequence of excessive poaching. Today however, Liuwa’s vast landscape is now home to more than 120 buffalo but also one of nature’s greatest spectacles – the second largest wildebeest migration in Africa Burrard-Lucas Photography
Gone, but Not Lost: Liuwa after Sepo
It is with heavy hearts that we must once more announce the loss of an important lioness from the Liuwa Pride. Just weeks after the passing of the famous Lady Liuwa, her second in command Sepo has passed as well.
In the years following Sepo’s introduction to Liuwa Plain National Park, Lady and Sepo had managed to strike a delicate balance of power between themselves, with Lady contributing wisdom and Sepo contributing brawn. Together they had led the small but recovering Liuwa Pride to stability, giving hope to those working tirelessly to restore lions to the region.
As one of the first females translocated to Liuwa Plain, Sepo was named ‘hope’ in the local Lozi language. …
A CELEBRATION OF THE 40TH CORONATION ANNIVERSARY OF HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS SENIOR CHIEF INYAMBO YETA
We live in an area rich in history and recently Sesheke witnessed history in the making with the celebration marking the 40th anniversary of the coronation of His Royal Highness Senior Chief Inyambo Yeta. The event was a three-day celebration which started on Thursday the 5th of October 2017, and culminating with a luncheon on Saturday the 7th of October hosted by the Finance Bank Sesheke Branch. At this VIP lunch government officials, foreign dignitaries and tribal chiefs from all over Zambia and neighbouring Namibia were in attendance.
Senior Chief Inyambo Yeta’s reign over the Sisheke chiefdom is part of the uninterrupted historic rule over the Barotse region. The Mwandi Royal Village was established as the administrative capital of the Barotse chiefdom in 1897, and almost a century later in 1974 Ilute Yeta, who at the time was Zambia’s High Commissioner to Botswana was appointed as Mulena of Sisheke. Three years later, Ilute Yeta was crowned as Litunga of the Barotseland as King Ilute Yeta IV, and in the same year his second born son Mulena Inyambo Yeta newly graduated from law school in Edinburgh was installed as the tenth ruler of the Sisheke Chiefdom.
Senior Chief Inyambo Yeta was born on the 27th of July, 1954 to Litunga Ilute Yeta and his wife Mwendabai Masiye. The second child of 32 children, he completed his higher education at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland from where he graduated with a law degree. As was his destined pathway on the 27th of September 1977 he became the tenth Mulena to rule the Sisheke Kingdom at the young age of 23 years. Inyambo Yeta continues to rule 40 years later, making him the longest known male reigning in Barotseland’s history.
A recent aerial survey by DNPW had spotted a large herd in the park and on day two of our collaring operation we were happy to locate them again with the help of our team in the spotter aircraft, for which flight time was donated by Wildlife Crime Prevention
The herd provided a beautiful sight from the air. Another female and male elephant were fitted with satellite collars by the chopper team after which the elephants returned quickly to the herd.
The Elephant Charge is an annual event which challenges teams of cars and motorbikes to complete a gruelling course through the Zambian bush. The Charge is held to raise money for conservation in Zambia, focussed on conservation through education, and in the ten years since in began, the event has raised over $640,000 which has been distributed to conservation organisations working across the country. The event is held at a different location each year over the the course of a weekend in September or October.