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Monday, 12 April 2010

News from Great Conservation Plains - from LLA

Following a recent soft refurbishment at Mara Plains, the Camp has incorporated a new Management couple. The area had seen over 5 inches (125mm) of rainfall by the end of February! The savannas are looking flush with green grasses and this is being enjoyed by all the antelope in the immediate camp vicinity. Needless to say the predators are taking the opportunity of the abundant wildlife right now too. Generally the game viewing is up to its usual Masai Mara "unbelievable" standard.

Regular sightings of lion, cheetah, leopard and elephants abound. Mara Plains Camp will remain open throughout May this year when the majority of Masai Mara camps chose to close. It is a bit of an oddity that camps close in May because it is actually one of the most prolific times of the year, following the seasonal rains, for extraordinary sightings.

February and March in the Chyulu Hills have been a period of clear skies, perfect starry nights, uninterrupted views of Kilimanjaro and a time for the Acacia trees to flower in all their splendour! The forest was dotted with these white flowering trees and, coming seemingly out of nowhere, are hoards of bees and butterflies to partake in the pollination. Diadem butterflies, Cape Whites, Blue Pansies OrangeTips...the list of butterflies goes on. Butterflies are an excellent indicator of the health of an ecosystem, and judging by the sheer numbers in the Chyulu Hills it would seem the area is well on its way to recover after last year's drought.

At Ol Donyo Wuas', as the rainfall cycle turns, the dry period followed through March. As the outlying pans begin to dry, Ol Donyo Wuas' waterhole became increasingly busier. Throughout the day long there has been a constant stream of thirsty wildlife - tentative giraffe, brazen zebra, hot warthog in search of a mud wallow and rutting impala rams who are desperate to win themselves a harem of beautiful ladies. With the log pile hide positioned in a prime location near the waterhole, guests are loving the opportunity of observing game at close proximity.

As with Mara Plains Camp, the Management has decided to keep Ol Donyo Wuas open throughout May.

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