Always looking for animals

Sam, Katy, and Noggs in Africa

Orange is the new mango, and wandering elephants

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In January I wrote about how abundant mangos are locally. Now it is winter and it’s oranges. The farms around us are brimming with oranges. I only realised recently that most of the citrus farms near us cultivate both crops on a large scale. Therefore, they seem to transition from mango season to orange season and back again.

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We are making the most of this time of plenty. We buy huge bags of oranges and make fresh orange juice. The juicer I received as a graduation present last month is constantly buzzing.

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There were elephants at our wildlife estate this week. They were in the river bed and then they ventured across the river to a local clinic at night where they knocked over stuff, as ginormous animals do. Apparently, they came from Balule Nature Reserve which part of Greater Kruger. It is impressive that they transversed the approximately 25 km without being bothered to much. Maybe they came for all the oranges. Or maybe they were here because they have such large spatial requirements and humans pen them into fenced areas. Or maybe it is because elephant poaching is on the increase in Kruger National Park at the moment. In Kruger National Park, two elephants were poached in 2014, 22 elephants in 2015, 46 elephants in 2016, and 30 elephants in the first six months of 2017 alone. Here’s a nice article with ideas about what you can do to help protect elephants.

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Eles in the riverbed on our estate – photo by Riaan

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Ele poo by the clinic – photo shared by MJ du Preez

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Ele damage at the clinic – photo shared by MJ du Preez

The eles are going to be darted and transported back to Greater Kruger. We loved knowing there were on our estate but it is safer for them in the national park where all efforts are being made to protect them, than amongst all the citrus farms. It makes me feel sad that elephants aren’t safe outside of national parks (or sometimes even inside). It also makes me think about what this part of Africa was like wildlife-wise before there were so many people. We are staying in Kruger National Park for a night next month. Maybe we will see the wandering eles back there.

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The view where we live. Imagining a time when eles filled this landscape and there were no fences.

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One thought on “Orange is the new mango, and wandering elephants

  1. Sam & Katy and of course Master Finn,
    This was another great addition to your lives in Africa…. keep the photos coming also… always fun to read your blog… love to all

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