Wednesday, 14 November 2012

My final day - escaping lions, stubborn giraffes, and everyone gets fed.

Today was my final day working at the Lion Park, and although I carried on with my volunteer duties as usual, I also took the opportunity to take many photos and videos to remember the experience by.

First thing in the morning, we were greeted with the news that five of the lions had escaped during the night and were found roaming the park. When we all simultaneously looked towards the cub enclosures on hearing this news, Marian provided clarification by saying "the big ones". Immediately we all had mental images of the fully grown, semi-wild lions from the lion camps stalking our campsite throughout the night. Imagine our relief when she provided further clarification that she meant the biggest of the cubs - cue relief all round! They had managed to dig under the fence of their enclosure and burrow out that way!

This afternoon, the cubs were fed meat instead of their usual bowl meals. Like their larger counterparts in the lion camps, they get excited the second they see the meat truck coming. The meat is tossed over the fence and into the enclosure, one piece per cub, and they are left to fight amongst themselves. Needless to say, when we go to collect the bones from the enclosure the next morning, there is not a crumb of meat left on them!

Following the excitement of feeding the cubs, Mara, the six month old giraffe, had to have her evening meal and be put to bed in her house.

Like any petulent child, Mara did not want to be in bed.
 Even more excitement followed when the volunteers went on a night game drive. Although the camp lions are given their main meal of the week on Sunday, they receive a "snack" of meat on Wednesday evenings.  Watching them fight over meat by the light of a flashlight was more more intimidating than anything seen in daylight; their warning growls echoed around us in the darkness, giving a rather spooky, voyeuristic feel.
Volunteers ready for a game drive

Night-time feeding

Returning to the camp, we decided to go to Montecasino, my all time favourite place in South Africa, for a few well-earned cocktails and to celebrate my last night before returning home.
One last night in Montecasino

A well-earned strawberry daquiri!

Previous entry ("Restaurant review: Lekgotla")

No comments:

Post a Comment