Wednesday 10 January 2018. Photos.
Highlights: Jackals and vultures eating a dead zebra
Our second game drive of Etosha National Park is also likely my last one of this trip. It’s amazing how every single game drive bought something new and wonderful and today it was so again. The majority of the group upgraded to Jeep / 4WD game drive allowing for a more tailored viewing experience as the local expert guide would listen to the 7-8 passengers in each vehicle and provide valuable insights.
The highlight of the day happened early and it was finding a recently dead zebra. We were later to realise that this zebra was pregnant when it died as we saw some of the dead baby being eaten from the inside of it’s mother. When we arrived their were a number of jackals eating the dead zebra. A zebra’s skin is extremely tough so they could only get at the meat from the ass and a small wound in the stomach.
During this feeding of the jackals a large number of vultures starting arriving and managed to push off the jackals by weight on numbers. Vultures are never kill they just find dead animals and eventually eat everything left behind. They are essential to the balance of life and the environment that they operate in. Still watching them go crazy on the dead zebra was not a pleasant experience but it was unique. A lot of the vultures ended up with a red head because of the blood.
Eventually an alpha jackal drove off the vultures and got to eating the zebra and the unborn baby. It wasn’t the best sight but it highlighted life in the wild.
Across the rest of the day we got to see giraffes, guinea fowls, wildebeest, zebras (this time alive), elephants, impalas, springboks, streamboks, a black rhino (from afar) and lots of different birds.
The day was exhausting but great. We arrived back at our campsite near 5 pm and I went straight to my air conditioned room to enjoy a cold shower. At dinner Onary warned us that we would now be heading into desert areas and it would be greatly even warmer. I guess I need to plan water and cooling options even more carefully.