We couldn’t believe our luck when Roger and Vicky asked us to join them for a week at Tree Frog Lodge in Madikwe. We have been there with them once before seven years ago and we keenly looked forward to this visit. We were not disappointed. The weather played ball and it was hot and rainless. The lodge has aged a bit – perhaps matured is a better word – with bigger trees and a pleasant patina. Our in-house guide was Matt Jones and he and his wife, Adriana looked after us in very fine style, ensuring that we were well fed and that we saw a varied and interesting cross-section of nature.
Roger and Vicky were, as always, perfect hosts and made sure that we never lacked for anything. Also there were Daniel, their little son, and Mich with a very pregnant Kerry. Later Vicky’s sister and brother-in-law, Irma and Marius joined us.
Although we went on two long game drives each day, one could have stayed in camp and still seen most animals. We had the usual elephants at the waterhole – one even wanted to come into the pool, but Mich managed to dissuade him. Three white rhinos visited every evening and there were the ubiquitous impala, warthogs and wildebeest, occasional baboons, giraffes, wild dogs on the chase, lions on the hunt and even a leopard one night. We could not have wished for more!
On the drives we were treated to some close encounters with elephants and lions. We also saw a good cross-section of Bushveld birds. I counted around 120 whilst there, but the high point was to see the sky darkened by thousands of Red-billed Queleas doing their amazing swirling dances over the Madikwe plains.
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