Monday, December 12, 2016

Ruaha National Park

Having decided not to fly back to Dar, we asked the Manager of the lodge for help booking a vehicle to take us there, which she did indeed sort out for us.

It wasn't cheap and we needed a hotel on the way, meaning we'd miss a day of Safari but we really didn't want to fly again and our schedule showed a 4-hour flight on what we knew to be a 2 hour trip, which meant lots of stops on the trip.  We were very grateful for her help in booking the car and making the arrangements for us.

The previous afternoon's drive had had to be curtailed as one of the other guests was getting progressively more unwell.   We didn't object and had returned, our treat for being accommodating was our own team for the day, result!

Right away we saw Grey Kestrel:

Black-bellied Bustard:

Black-faced Sandgrouse:

We did in fact see a good number of species throughout the morning including a new one for us d'Arnaud's Barbet:

Perched on a bridge Lesser-Striped Swallow:

Crowned Hornbill:

An elephant having a thorough scratch on a Boabab tree, they really go to town on the trees and help maintain the habitat through their exertions and consumption:

We stopped for breakfast and enjoyed seeing Cut-throat Finches:

The views at various points along the river were stunning:

At one point we spied some lions shading in the morning heat:

Apparently they are all part of an extended pride of over 20 lions, we found another group asleep closer to the river:

Another bird that morning, the White-headed Buffalo-Weaver:

In the afternoon we were accompanied by the guide trainer, which made the drive more of an examination for our guide which in turn diminished what we covered, but we did still see some interesting things including Red-billed Hornbill:

Von der Decken's Hornbill:


and on our way back to the lodge, African Green Pigeon:

and our final life-species of the trip, Hildebrandt's Francolin:

Sunset in Ruaha was as beautiful as everywhere else we'd stayed:


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