Nxai Pan

Nxai Pan Camp, April 2022

A big herd of buffalo walked in a seemingly endless single file to visit the waterhole in front of Nxai Pan Camp, joining the elephants for a thirst-quenching drink much to our guests’ delight. 

The area was still very green and we enjoyed a beautiful spread of life all across the park. Plenty of insects were listed because of our abundant rains. We noticed Giant jewel beetles, Yellow pansy, African joker, African monarch, Zebra white and Broad-bordered yellow grass butterflies, and the abdomen-tapping Tok tokkie beetles scuttling across the pans. 

Let us take you on a sound safari

Our guides are trained to use all their senses when locating animals in the Nxai Pan National Park and we learnt how sound always amplifies the safari experience this April. At night, guests enjoyed the whooping calls of Spotted hyenas as they settled in by the fire below the stars. When we stopped to photograph a tower of giraffes, guides discerned the loud roars of a male lion and drove closer to investigate. There were two dominant males patrolling the Nxai Pan Camp area and one of the brothers was mating with a female. On another occasion, the trumpeting of elephants led us to a lion sighting. We located the Nxai Pan pride along the West Road as they were flushed from the bush by some very disgruntled elephants. 

Another lioness was located walking along the road in obvious pain. We noticed she had fresh wounds on her face and a bad injury to the shoulder, which all pointed to a fight. As she walked, the Springboks were running around her alarming and pronking, but she took very little notice. 

Giraffes Nxai Pan Camp

There were good herds of Springboks, Gemsbok Red hartebeest plus small groups of Kudus and a significant number of zebra were still around on their migration route south. We encountered thirty giraffes concentrated in one area along Baobab Loop road one day. The world’s tallest mammal, these animals are not territorial (though the males will fight for a mate) and live in loose, open herds gathering together for mutual security. 

An Aardwolf was seen along the Middle Road in an interesting sighting because the Black-backed jackals were after him. The little Aardwolf was visibly distressed and very skittish. A charming family of six Bat-eared fox was also seen along Middle Road, playing together during the day.  

A sidestriped sand snake was found on top of the walkway in camp and a pair of Crowned lapwings was seen mating pair at Nxai Pan waterhole. Thanks to the remaining insects, some migrant birds, such as the Blue-cheeked bee-eater and Swallow-tailed bee-eater have remained a little longer than usual in the area.

Flamingoes at Baines’ Baobabs

We also scored some gorgeous photographs of Greater flamingoes on a day trip to Baines’ baobabs. They were wading close to the shore of the Kudiakam Pan at very close range. There was also a Pale chanting goshawk seen feeding on a Ground agama plus the regularly-seen Black-shouldered kites, Brown snake-eagles, Black-chested snake-eagles, Common buzzards, Rattling cisticolas and vibrantly-coloured Crimson-breasted shrikes

(Please note: For the safety of the animals, we do not disclose the location of either rhino or pangolin sightings. Accompanying pictures are from our Kwando Photo Library which consists of all your great photo submissions over the years, it may not be the most up to date, but we felt it was worthy of a feature alongside this month’s Sightings Report!)

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