I did saw cheetahs 2 times in my 14 day travel along Namibia. In both time they where not free cheetahs. The first time I saw one was at Quiver Tree Forest Camp. They had one there 3 cheetahs and they let us to get inside the fence while he was eating. He didn't look at us, he was only thinking in his meal.
The second time was at Africat Foundation. They had many cheetahs together in a big plot. The cheetahs where call for meal and they all come running. The keepers gave them the meal and meanwhile we were invited to get inside the fence without protection. When they finished their meal they began to look at us. They look strait to the eyes, and is not very comfortable
There is a big problem with cheetahs and farmers at Namibia. This animals go to the farms and kills the farm animals so the farmers get angry. What Africat Foundation does is to try to explain farmers not to kill cheetahs and to call them if they catch one so that they can take care of them, Not an easy job.
What I saw of these animals is that they are like dogs for some people ... nearly like dogs ... and they must not be very dangerous when in both times I saw them they let us get inside the fence they where.
Favorite thing: You will find free ostrich as you drive through Namibia. This Ostrich I found it at Aus Klein Vista Camp. Hi was with his female in a big plot, but free ones are very easy to see, and is something that for me was very curious cause ... I didn't imagen this animals to be wild ones
It is not so easy to see Lions as other kind of animals at Namibia. I saw this beautiful lion at Africat Fundation, so she was not free.
I also saw lions at Etosha the second day of being there, this time free, as all animals are at Etosha. They where at a waterhole at 6:30 am near the camp. Over 20 lions together resting at the waterhole, given an incredible beautiful imagen. My camera hasn't have a good zoom so I didn't get a good imagen
In Namibia you will see nest complexes like this, pretty much everywhere. They are built by the tiny, and wonderfully named sociable weaver birds, and sociable is certainly what they are! Some of these nests are over 100 years old, and some have been known to house up to 300 birds.
Architects can only look askance at the achievements of our tiny feathered friends. The species' survival depends on numbers - huge numbers. In these nests they have everything a self-respecting desert dweller could wish for: air conditioning, entry tunnels that make life difficult for would-be predators, a bit of space to rent out to other species should they require it. The whole structure is held together by its own weight.
Inside the birds create chambers that are about the size of a man's fist. And there they live, happilly and communally. Snakes have a hard job reaching them, but they will persist, so my advice is to think very carefully before puting up a tent anywhere near these nests!
Little-known, and ultimately useless fact about the sociable weaver: it can survive in some of the world's most arid locations because it's consumption of insects means that it never needs to drink water!
Fondest memory: For more photos of these amazing constructions, have a look at this page
I normally don't expect to see owls. As a rule they are out and about while I'm tucked up in bed. You can imagine therefore what a surprise it was to encounter this chap, in broad daylight and in the crippling heat of Sossusvlei.
Had he been out late the night before and lost his way?
Did he always perch there during the day and laugh at the hosts of tourists exhausting themselves on the dunes?
Who knows? But just looking at his feathers made me sweat even more!
Fondest memory: I have no idea what type of owl this is. He was pretty big though, maybe 60 or 70 cm. If anyone out there is a specialist on these things, I would be very grateful for some information.
In the meantime if you are interested in seeing some of the birdlife of Namibia, look no further:
Pictures of Namibian birdlife
This little fella was scurrying around near our hotel at Sessreim, looking for crumbs that had fallen from the breakfast table.
I've looked to see where ground squirrels tend to be seen, and they are frequently seen around the Fish River Canyon in the south of the country, at Etosha and in a certain number of other locations. I could not find a reference to them living in the dune area of the Namib desert... but there you go. There is at least one!
Most people think about big animals and dangerous animals when they think of African wildlife... but there's lots more. I will certainly never be engaged by National Geographic as staff photographer for my wildlife pics... but a few creatures stayed still long enough for me to take a picture in which their species are more or less recognisable.
I really wanted to see massive pink flocks of flamingoes while I was there... it is possible, but we were not really in the right places, nor there at the best time of the year. Nevertheless I was so happy when we stopped for lunch near this lagoon and I found these 6 beauties wandering around.
Fondest memory: This lagoon is situated very close to the entrance to the Skeleton Coast park, just off the main road known as Welwitschia Drive. The main place to see flamingos though is Walvis Bay lagoon, which serves as host to 70,000 to 80,000 species of birds.
More info on Namibia's flora and fauna is available at this URL:
My favourite experience in Namibia was our game drives through Etosha NP. For a nature lover as myself, there is nothing more exciting than observing wildlife in their natural habitat. It really makes a visit to the zoo a bit depressing afterward.
We were very lucky to come upon this lioness with her fresh kill. You can see her carrying the front half of a baby zebra probably to her waiting cubs.
Are you into birding? Namibia is an excellent place for enjoying feathered friends. From big to small, you'll log many varieties of birds in a short period of time.
On a recent two week visit, we sighted the following birds:
South African Shelduck
Blacksmith Lapwing (Plover)
Crowned Lapwing (Plover)
Black-breasted snake eagle
Sthn Pale Chanting Goshawk
Kori Bustard (largest flying bird in Africa!)
Northern black Korhaan
Cape Turtle Dove
Grey Go-Away Bird
Lilac-breasted Roller (especially pretty!)
Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill
African grey Hornbill
Cape (Black) Crow
African red-eyed Bulbul
Mountain Wheatear (Chat)
Common Fiscal (Shrike)
Cape Glossy Starling
Red-billed Buffalo Weaver
Golden-breasted bunting (beautiful little bird!)
Fondest memory: The most beautiful birds were:
The Kori Bustard (large bird)
The Hornbills (large birds)
Lilac-breasted roller (small bird)
The Grey Go-Away Bird (Lourie) had the most interesting sound.
If you love birding, Namibia's a great place.
My daughter is one of those "animal kids". She loves all animals, whether they be furry kittens or creepy and poisonous snakes. In fact, she seems to like the cold and crappy reptiles the most.
So, Namibia sure offered salve for her soul. In this hot desert environment, a large cadre of reptiles reside and prosper, showing themselves often to the interested tourist.
Now, the only snake we saw was (a) not poisonous and (b) dead. But, we did see plenty of chamleons, lizards and agamas.
Fondest memory: I really enjoyed watching the rock agamas scurry around the rock facades of our hotel in Windhoek. Even in the middle of the country's capital city, the numbers and variety of reptiles present was most interesting.
No wonder Steve Irwin, "The Crocodile Hunter", once did a show from Namibia.
Vist the seal colony at Cape Cross. There are literally thousands of seals that swarm over the rocks here and they are sooo cute...
Fondest memory: The variety of things to see and do, there is sooo much in one country...
Fondest memory: The weaver birds - Webervögel - build their nests not individually but together with friends and family. Thus, a nest may well cover a whole tree! The nests can may be up to one hundred years old!
Etosha National Park truly impressed me. Within ten minutes of driving in the National Park, we came across a pride of lions and their cubs.
Fondest memory: The watering holes were also magical...nowhere else in the world can you sit and watch elephants, warthogs, wildebeasts, zebras, impalas, oryxs, etc all in one spot.
Fondest memory: While driving across a savannah in western Etosha, my wife and I came across a lone Black Rhino that was crossing the vast plain. The road we were driving on intersected the Rhino's path, and he wasn't very amused at the sight of our bright red Jeep blocking his way. We only barely made it out of his way as the Rhino put his head down and charged us, narrowly avoiding a large hole in our Jeep!
Favorite thing: visit Etosha National Park. Etosha is the African Safari Experience at its best, without all the tourists you'll find in Kenya and Tanzania.