African fish-eagle, Botswana, buffalo, Cattle egret, Chacma baboon, Chobe National Park, Common waterbuck, Egyptian goose, elephant, giraffe, Goliath heron, hippo, Kasikili, leopard, Namibia, Nile crocodile, pied kingfisher, Puku, Reed cormorant, Sedudu, vervet monkey, warthog, water monitor, Water thick-knee, waterbuck, white-crowned lapwing
Wednesday afternoon, 6th March. Vervet monkeys hung around the lodge. Indeed we were advised not to leave our sliding doors open. I did go onto my balcony a couple of times to look, but I didn’t see any. These were in a common area.
After a rest it was out on the boat again, in the same direction. Some familiar wildlife and some new. One very special.
These last two pictures had been taken while the boat was moving fast, with, unusually, no stopping, and at a time when I would have thought we would be turning round. Yet the boat sped on, further and further from the lodge.
After a short while all became clear. A leopard! Those local boat steerers/guides keep in touch with each other!
I hadn’t given my hope of seeing a leopard – which would complete my big cat ‘list’ – a thought for days. But given this opportunity, I, like everyone else, took zillions of photos, of which here are a very few. It (I don’t know whether it was male or female) was a long way off, but once you knew where it was, there was a clear view.
I moved to the upper deck of the boat, and by the time I was there, she also had moved.
Short of seeing her catch prey and dragging it up a tree (the chances of seeing that from a boat were slim to non-existent, I would imagine) this was the best possible view we could have had. From these pictures, I extract the following enlarged portraits.
It was now indeed a race to get back to the lodge before the (Chobe) national park shut. I don’t think we made it in time (there were no physical barriers) but I didn’t hear of the boatmen being fined either.