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A boat trip on the mighty Zambezi in winter

20. September 2018, inke - Gondwana Collection, Environment

Even though it is a very cold morning by Zambezi standards, scores of birds are out and about at a tributary, on a large island and along the mighty Zambezi River’s mainstream. During a morning boat trip from Zambezi Mubala Camp via the large island to the mainstream up to Zambezi Mubala Lodge and back, 38 wetland bird species were counted at the end of July this year. Another 83 bird species were registered around Zambezi Mubala Camp in two days. 

A boat trip on the mighty Zambezi in winter

The Carmine Bee-eaters are back!

17. September 2018, inke - Gondwana Collection, Environment

Their numbers are increasing daily – the Carmine Bee-eaters are back at the breeding colony between Zambezi Mubala Camp and Zambezi Mubala Lodge (formerly Kalizo Lodge). They have safely made the long trip from their winter habitats in East Africa to Namibia. This year a group of several hundred birds has chosen a nesting site between the lodge and the usual colony. 

The Carmine Bee-eaters are back!

Nature is geared for spring and the calendar says it’s time

14. September 2018, inke - Environment, Weather

In the southern hemisphere September 1st is seen as the beginning of spring. According to the calendar, winter is over by then but nature does not stick to prescribed dates. The first Black thorns (Acacia mellifera) were already in bloom at the end of August, for example east of Rehoboth, and heralded spring in some areas while in other places the thorny branches did not even show any buds.

Nature is geared for spring and the calendar says it’s time

A boat trip on the Chobe River on a winter morning

13. September 2018, inke - Gondwana Collection, Environment

In the vicinity of the Chobe River Camp the reeds and papyrus as well as the tall trees which characterise the banks of the other rivers on Namibia’s north-eastern border are absent. At the end of July, during a boat trip in the morning, a total of 31 wetland bird species were counted along the Chobe River and within two days altogether 97 bird species in and around Chobe River Camp. 

A boat trip on the Chobe River on a winter morning

Report on wetland bird counts and bird mapping at Gondwana lodges in north-eastern Namibia, July 2018

04. September 2018, inke - Environment, Gondwana Collection

After a very successful series of summer counts at the four Gondwana lodges - Hakusembe River Lodge, Namushasha River Lodge, Zambezi Mubala Lodge and Chobe River Camp - in February it was time to repeat the exercise, this time in winter. Although the primary aim of the visit was the wetland bird counts, bird mapping (atlasing) was also done. 

Report on wetland bird counts and bird mapping at Gondwana lodges in north-eastern Namibia, July 2018

680 bird species in Namibia

30. August 2018, inke - Environment

According to the latest statistics no less than 680 different bird species are found in Namibia. Four of them were introduced to southern Africa and acclimatised well to Namibia and the neighbouring countries. Sixteen bird species are endemic. Fifty-one of the 680 bird species are threatened with extinction and another 27 species are endangered. 

680 bird species in Namibia

Otoliths help to determine fish species and age

28. August 2018, inke - Environment

Stones in the head of a fish – is that possible? Some anglers are aware of stones, or otoliths, in the head of the Madagascar meagre, but it is not generally known that ear-stones, most of them tiny, are found in the skull of all fish. Ear-stones, according to scientists, probably help fish to keep their balance. Otoliths are used to find out what Cape fur seals eat on our coast. 

Otoliths help to determine fish species and age

After a rain shower: The desert at Lüderitzbucht is alive

22. August 2018, inke - Environment

It is three months now since a heavy shower of over 50 mm came down in and around Lüderitz on May 17th. It revived many flowers that had not bloomed for years, or even worn leaves. Seeds which had slumbered in the parched soil for ages, awakened to life. The greenery and the colours are not short-lived, however: delicate pink blossoms are still to be admired, lush green stands out against the greys and browns of the desert floor, large patches turn yellow and insects are out and about everywhere.

After a rain shower: The desert at Lüderitzbucht is alive

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