Namibia Road Trip - 2018

Two big fellows wandered out on the gravel road and decided they liked it there. What they found fascinating was unclear, unless it was the chance to stop all the white vehicles anywhere along the way to their favorite waterhole. After some time of their own choosing, they finally got off the road and entered the waterhole where they drank, played with the water, took baths, and showered themselves with those miraculous hoses that are their trunks. Such fun to watch! Another animal interaction we got to watch as long as it lasted (unlike on safaris where the driver may just move on if the action goes on too long) was what at first appeared to be some sort of courtship behavior between two giraffes. They stood very close together and started off with necks intertwining, moved on to some neck swinging where they actually would hit each other in the chest, more sinuous neck movements, not necessarily ever twisting together, but moving outward from the perpendicular. At first, we thought we were watching a courtship display. But then we figured out we were watching two males testing out their fighting skills. The cameras were smoking! Zebras are also fun to watch at some length. The big herds revealed individuals doing all sorts of horse-like actions: wading, rolling in the dust, fighting, romping for the sheer pleasure of it, nuzzling, nursing, colts teetering around as they play and learn to get those powerful legs in control, and even some reproduction activity. We witnessed all these in wonder and joy at the sheer exuberance of nature when animals are free to be themselves in their own environment!

The only vultures we saw on the whole trip were at a waterhole where four of them with their backs to us were eating something on the opposite bank from us. We think they were common vultures but we got to see nothing identifying about them except their brown coloration in the feathers. Hyenas also we saw only at waterholes and they were definitely the brown variety.

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