Taco Treats, Angry Acacias And Cheetah Care

My Friday was a clone of Thursday, only that the latter was Taco Day – we got yummy tacos for lunch. I loved them last year and they were not less tasty this year. We even had guacamole (that didn’t actually taste like guacamole, but was tasty on the tacos nevertheless)!

Thursday and Friday were, as mentioned, clones of each other. The first half of these days I was at the office, entering picture data from camera traps, then the other half I’d spend outside the CCF’s offices, measuring Acacia mellifera, Acacia fleckii and other angry trees and bushes that try to shred you to pieces if you ever get to close to them. Learning from my Thursday experience, I brought a long-sleeved British Army shirt in order to avoid cuts on Friday, only to find out the area we were measuring plants in was much less crowded with angry plants than the day before. Still, better to not take any chances with the vegetation out here.

Most, if not all, EarthWatch volunteers went on a trip to Etosha today. This means that everything is less crowded, and since it’s Saturday there’s also less to do, so it doesn’t really matter. While I was the only volunteer to stay behind last year, this time it’s a lot more people not leaving the CCF’s premises, which makes life a little easier.

Today started with some excitement since one of the cats in the girl’s pen had gone missing. Not surprisingly it was Leia, who happens to be sick. She did, however, turn up later, and our keepers were very reliefed to know she’s still alive.

We then went feeding, and after finishing a quick roundtrip to most of CCF’s cats, speedily (cheetah-style!) feeding them and replacing their water, we went to Bellebenno where a Safari was supposed to take place, but… didn’t. Thus, we simply fed the cats, or rather Rob did since Markus and I were busy shooting photos and/or videos of running spottykitties.

Since the afternoon’s quite calm on Saturdays, all I’m doing now is sighting those pictures and videos. After all, I’ve only got three more weeks left here. Half time already…

…and please forgive my use of alliterations in the title – it was just too tempting to resist.

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Why don’t I have a sunburn yet?

This is the question I’m asking myself now for more than two weeks – I usually get a sunburn very quickly, even tho I usually only walk around (and not much) in Germany and I don’t really sunbaths either. Yesterday I experimented and decided not to put on any sunscreen at all, but I still didn’t even get reddish. Guess the sun’s not being so bad after all.
We worked more in the Eland’s (that’s the girl’s) pen , more specifically on scuffling around the fences in order to reduce the risk of fires damaging the fences. The last few days have been extremely cloudy, with winds and humidity indicating the rainy season’s about to start already – much too soon, considering the season won’t probably last longer than it usually does, possibly leading to severe problems once it’s over and no more rain falls to replenish the ground water here (which is only 1 % of all rain anyway).
It was really hot, with the sun burning down on us while we were working hard – not the best way to motivate you for work. Sandy watched us while we made our way towards her favourite lazing corner and actually stayed there when we arrived, observing us curiously before walking one tree further and flopping down in its shade. Awesome. I wish I could’ve joined her. Fortunately, the clouds finally covered the sun and it got easier to work.
We worked until 17:05 when Matt finally picked us up. Took quite a while, since he was also feeding the cats in the pen (it was Head Day) and because they had to look for Leia first before picking us up. She doesn’t seem to be getting better, but we can still hope. Poor cat.

Adeline is leaving us tomorrow and desperately trying to check into her flight from here. The Internet connection’s not really stable today, so I hope this actually gets gets when I press Publish posted…

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