A Travellerspoint blog

Some new feathered babies

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A bit late with my update this week on account of me getting to the computer on wednesday and not being able to remember what i have done this week! Not that exciting things didn't happen!

We have had 4 owls bought to us this week,Three from the same lady who says they fell out of their nest, and being unable to fly would have died. Another was bought in with a broken wing, so yesterday we had to fix that up and fingers crossed she will be ok. I have named the first to come in Prisicilla. Each night we have to cut up day old dead chick to force feed to the owls. This is a challenge when they seemto resist being fed by using their sharp claws! Luckily i have my garden gloves to wear for protection, but im sure that before my last week here is over, i will be scratched to pieces!

We also had a kingfisher brought in last week. He was unable to fly. We tried to catch grasshoppers for him, but were unsuccessful, catching just a couple and James almost losing a finger when he tried to feed it! The next day the bird had died.

This especially caused problems because of the 24 children that we had visit last friday. to fill their day we had pl;anned for them to catch grasshoppers for the kingfisher. we still had them do this tho, but lied and said they were for the snakes and to be frozen for birds that get bought in. In the end we feed them to the monkeys, who really enjoyed eating them. One of the girls had caughgt 50+ grasshoppers, because the children themselves eat such insects they were much better at catching them.

we also had the children draw monkey pictures,they were all quite good. They all seemed to enjoy their day,and it is good to have educated the children about their countries wildlife.

We have been having some probelmswith week with the damn monkeys in quarentine escaping. they are smart critters who manage to undo the bolts that shut the doors. not sure why they dont use padlocks on the doors, would save a lot of problems. ONe of the monkeys from quarentine also bit james this week, his lame attempt to get man point, i say!

We had another monkey die from worms. she had been in one of the intro enclosures. it is always very sad. Also one monkey was found dead when Matthew was showing the 2 new german girls around the place, not a nice introduction for them.

It is very cold at night here now, but still warm enough for shorts and skirts during the day. Apparently their worst winter for a while. Hopefully be warmer when i getup to kenya.

We had to go to the bar to watch the rugby last saturday, Englanbd vs SA. Shame we lost, which meant the south africans being very happy! Return leg this sat, fingers crossed for some english glory!

Bob and Lynne returned on sunday from england. they had been over to visit some kids from lewisham who had been over as part of a tv show that will be on channel 4 this month. so look out for it on the tv schedules.

Had a bushbaby get itself into one of the small enclosures, i noticed on my way up to do morning chores. it was the first time i had seen one, they are very cute. matthew caught it and let it go into a nearby tree.

Posted by leiasj 03:14 Archived in South Africa Tagged animal Comments (0)

fried monkey

no i haven't been eating them!

21 °C
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leia_0041.jpgleia_0031.jpgleia_0021.jpgWe had a monkey bought in last week who had been fried by some electricity wires. he was really shaken up, and of course had to be taken away from his troop. he was probably only a couple of months old. he smelt really bad, like burnt flesh. So we sedated him and cleaned him up a bit, but he didnt make it through the night. Rigor mortis freaks me out! We had named him Berni Flash (and made him into a super hero because he survived the high voltage!).

Had one of our babies die as well. probably from worms. found him in the morning when we were cleaning the cage.

a lot of the monkeys and the babbons have diahorrea at the moment, as do I and some of the other volunteers. goes to show how similar we all are.

on thursday we had some land claims people come around to price the farm up because some black people are laying claim to the land. which is really sad and could mean that the monkeys become homeless. apparently the claims dont even need to be that substantial and it can be claimed that their ancestors were living there before white people took it away. there is so much built on the land which they will also get, and no doubt the price that is offered will be very low for what is there. it is all to do with having a black government.

sunday i went on the big swing, which you jump off into a gorge from 38metres up and swing! lots of fun, though lots of screamning. we bought a dvd of it so that you can all see when i get back!

on the way there we stopped off at a few different places with nice views and to do some shopping. so now i must send some thigns back! but i will wait til im leaving SA. We also saw some potholes (not the ones that annoy you in teh road) and i got to make a wish because i had good aim!

on monday me and james got adventurousa nd decided to brave the crocodiels and hippos to test the rope swing over the river at riverside. needless to say the river was cold and dirty. but it was really good fun. and no crocs or hippos spotted!

we also had another braai but was slightly different because we made a stew on the fire, which was tasty!

on friday we have 22 kids coming for the day to show them around, so might not be getting to town.

forgot to say but i would like the melon at the wedding please!!!!


Posted by leiasj 03:53 Archived in South Africa Tagged volunteer Comments (1)

confrontation with an elephant

and i survived!!!!

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leia_006.jpgleia_008.jpgleia_001.jpgleia_002.jpgwent to jruger national park for the weekend. it is the biggest in south africa and possibly africa. the big 5 are all there as well as lots of bird species and lots of other mammals.

we had to be up early to get to the park for 6am when it opened. morning is the ebst time to see animal activity becaus they dont lie to move about too much in the midday heat. we saw ltos of giraffe, which are my favourite because they are so graceful. also zebra, wildebeast, impala (distinctive by an M shape on teir butt, which looks like the mcdonalds logo which is appropriate beause like mcdonalds you see them on every corner, and are a favourite snack for many of the carnivores), otehr antelope, hippo and rhino. i say we were confronted by an elephant becuase he was pretty close and the car behind us was trying to piss him off. but we escaped unscathed. we did see a couple of lions from a distance. we also went on a night drive which must be with one of the game rangers. the lions had killed a giraffe and at ngiht the hyenas were busy feasting. they laugh jsut like in the lion king! we had a mini braai and threw a left over piece of meat over the fence behnd our tents (dont tell the rangers!) so that the hyenas would come close. they also make a strange wooping sound which i didnt realise and so thought it was one of the boys messing around. the ngiht sky was so clear that we slept with the tent door open so we could see, but woke up very cold in the morning! we fell asleep to the sound of hyena and lions in the distance. in the morning we went on an 8km walk to see soem of the wildlife close up. well we didnt get all that close, but we saw lots of tracks, and some plants and small animals. we then drove around in the car again, desperate to find the cheetah and leopard, to no avail.

however, we did get to go to a cheetah rehab project so i did get to see them. not as good as seeing them in the wild. but still good to see. we also went to a reptile place. and i held a snake, scorpian and baboon spider.

hopefully attatching some photos for you.

Posted by leiasj 15:13 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged animal Comments (1)

back to Riverside

via luxury

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leia_0011.jpgleia_005.jpgleia_003.jpgI am back at Riverside now. Finished shooting the baboons on monday.

Before I left sun city i went to the local shebeen a couple of nights (and on monday when i was supposed to be working!). Bob, Mathew, Tracey and new volunteer James came to SUncity before I left. James to take over my role. We had a couple of lovely meals which made a nice change to pap and chicken! I ate ostrich!!

oh and i also took my first night drive. The baboons let me have the evening off, so i took a night drive. so very very cold!!! but i saw lots of animals and took some vidoe because my camera is not so good at taking ngiht photos. we saw wild dogs, lion, hippo, zebra, elephant, rhino, impala, hyena, wildebeast and rabbits!!!

Rather than coming straight back to riverside i spent 2 nights at the release site, where we have been relocating monkeys from a nearby town. the site is going to be part of a huge game reserve, and we stayed in a luxury lodge. It has a chapel so I am contemplating this as a future wedding venue because it is so lovely. Except for the kitchen where it is so dirty that i cut my toe on glass despite wearing sandels. when they have weddings there, the bride arrives on an elephant!!

I was also able to do a microlight, and saw zebra, giraffe, buffalo, and monkeys because i flew over the release site!!!

we then came back to riverside. there are 4 of us volunteers here now, and a couple of friends of bob and lynnes. the baby baboons have gotten so much bigger and stronger in two weeks. it did not take them long to recognise us again. we also have a baby vervet that we are looking after now, it is napier who was not getting along with the other babies in the baby cage. not sure what will happen to it. because it being out of the cage will only make it worse for it to be reintroduced!

tomorrow we go to kruger national park. we will take a day and a night drive.

unfortunately my camera is not recognised on this computer, so no new photos!

Posted by leiasj 12:08 Archived in South Africa Tagged volunteer Comments (0)

Being adventurous and taking advantage of staff discount!!

sunny 23 °C

100_0681.jpgSo the baboons are runnign riot!! Well they aren't too bad, jsut smashing a window here and there! and stealing food etc, nowt out of the ordinary!

I have been busy taking advantage of some of the activities here. So far I have gone down what is supposed to be the worlds longest zip line, and also been parasailing. I have uploaded a photo of me doing the zip line, because I remembered the CD. unfortunately I forgot my USB cable to upload some photos from my camera! Both activities were a lot of fun. Though I did have to put a lot of faith in the ability of 2 men to tie a good knot when I did the parasailing. I have faith that people are good at their jobs. And I was up for 6 minutes without a hitch! I know I keep promising photos, believe me you will get them soon enough!

We rescued a monkey from being a pet, because it has now decided to bite its owner, no shit! I wonder if it has ever seen another monkey, this is always the problem that they are too used to humans and do not react well with other monkeys.

I should be returning to Riverside at the weekend. Else go to the release site.

Mum can you send me family addresses because they were stored on my zen that I can't turn on!! Thanks!! xxxIMG_1262.jpg

Posted by leiasj 02:11 Archived in South Africa Tagged animal Comments (0)

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