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Archive for October, 2005

Okavango Delta Botswana

Map Okavango Delta Botswana
The Okavango delta is one of the world’s largest inland water systems. It's headwaters start in Angola’s western highlands, with numerous tributaries joining to form the Cubango river, which then flows through Namibia (called the Kavango) and finally enters Botswana, where it is then called the Okavango. Millions of years ago the Okavango river use to flow into a large inland lake called Lake Makgadikgadi (now Makgadikgadi Pans). Tectonic activity and faulting interrupted the flow of the river causing it to backup and form what is now the
Okavango delta
. This has created a unique system of water ways that now supports a vast array of animal and plant life that would have otherwise been a dry Kalahari savanna. The delta’s floods are fed from the Angolan rains, which start in October and finish sometime in April. The floods only cross the border between Botswana and Namibia in December and will only reach the bottom end of the delta (Maun) sometime in July, taking almost nine months from the source to the bottom. This slow meandering pace of the flood is due to the lack of drop in elevation, which drops a little more than 60 metres over a distance of 450 kilometres. The delta’s water deadends in the Kalahari – via the Botetle river, with over 95 per cent of the water eventually evaporating.


During the peak of the flooding the delta’s area can expand to over 16,000 square kilometres, shrinking to less than 9,000 square kilometres in the low period. As the water travels through the delta, the wildlife starts to move back into the region. The areas surrounding the delta are beginning to try out (the rains in Botswana occur approximately the same time as in Angola) and the wildlife starts to congregate on the edge of the newly flooded areas, May through October. The delta environment has large numbers of animal populations that are otherwise rare, such as crocodile, red lechwe, sitatunga, elephant, wild dogs, buffalo, wattled crane as well as the other more common mammals and bird life. The best time for game viewing in the delta is during the May-October period, as the animal life is concentrated along the flooded areas and the vegetation has dried out. The best time for birding and vegetation is during the rainy season (Nov.- April) as the migrant bird populations are returning and the plants are flowering and green.


My daughter and I had the privilege to visit botswana in august 2004, and more particular we stayed three days in the Okavango Delta. At that time we had one of the most spectacular speedboat-trips in or lifes. we made a video of this trip. It is very recomended for travel buff's to watch the video... Play the speadboat trip in the Okavango Delta in Botswana -->Speadboat trip okavango Delta - Botswana


Mokoro trip Okavango Delta Botswana
In the early moring in the delta we made also a very beautiful trip with "mokoro's" to spot wildlife. The mokoro is the traditional vessel of the Okavango Delta: a dugout canoe. In the southeast of the Delta, where the waterways are shallow, they are poled by an individual standing in the stern. In deep waters they are paddled. No visit is complete without a ride in a mokoro. Seating is either a blanket on the base of the canoe or a moulded chair and each mokoro carries a maximum of 2 passengers and poler. Poled silently, a mokoro glides gently through the waterways, parting dense reed beds with perfect stealth so that animals and birds are caught totally unaware. You become a part of the Delta. The sunset painted the water a golden red. The reeds shadowed and the last calls of the birds echoed in the wind. In the distance you could hear herds of elephant and hippopotamus stamping through the water with exceptional force. Crocodiles and snakes glided past and the cooling breeze whistled through the trees. We watched the scene with admiration and listened intently as our guide told us about his life, and growing up, in the Okovango Delta, Botswana. We will never forget this very impressive experience..... Play the Mokoro trip in the Okavango Delta in Botswana -->Mokoro trip okavango Delta - Botswana

American Fish Eagle
During the Okavanga tour with the speadboat the guide had a awesome trick with some fish as bate and with some Fish Eagles flying around. An
African Fish eagle
, is a well known bird with its white head and mantle, plus chesnut-browwn underparts. This eagle can be identified as such by their fully featherd legs. The Fish Eagle has a very distinctive call which is one of the distinctive sounds of Kenya (once heard it is never forgotten). It is particularly common in and around some of the Rift Valley lakes. Although, as its name suggests, it feeds extensively on fish, in some areas (eg Lake Bogoria) it preys on flamingos and other water birds. It is also known to eat carrion and is classified as a kleptoparasite ie it steals prey from other birds. Goliath Herons are known to lose a percentage of their catch to Fish Eagles. The totally different looking bird on the left is the juvenile Fish Eagle. The appearance changes gradually over three or four years with the dark streaking on the breast being the last part of the juvenile plumage to vanish. Play the video with the trick with the American Fish Eagle in the Okavango Delta in Botswana -->Trick with American Fish Eagle  Okavango Delta - Botswana

Botswana Map SA
Botswana, where all this beauty is situated is a landlocked country in southern Africa. Before gaining independence from Britain in 1966, it was known as Bechuanaland. The country’s name comes from its largest ethnic group, the Tswana. A large majority of the population lives in the eastern part of the country, near the only railroad and the border with South Africa. Botswana’s diamond mines and other mineral deposits have made it one of the wealthiest African countries. The country has maintained an impressive rate of economic growth since independence. Most of the country is quite dry and unsuited for agriculture. The Kalahari Desert covers much of central and southwestern Botswana. The country is noted for its many animal reserves.
Botswana
has been a stable democracy, governed by an elected president, since gaining independence. The country’s official name is Republic of Botswana. Gaborone is the capital and largest city. English is the country’s official language, but most of the people speak a Bantu language.

Tribe

Going Tribal

On the Belgium television started yesterday a very spectacular serie called Tribe. Extreme explorer and former Royal Marine Bruce Parry scours the globe in search of ancient tribes as he tests his limits while living alongside people in the world?s most remote areas.Going Tribal follows Parry as he sheds his Western cultural accouterments and fully immerses himself in each society for a month?s time. He is accompanied by a translator and does his best to learn the basics of tribal language. He must learn to hunt and cook using traditional methods as taught to him by his hosts. Going Tribal offers a unique look into some of the world?s most isolated peoples and disappearing tribes, exposing the viewers to languages and customs like never before.

Play the trailer of bruce perry’s adventures in TRIBES : tribe - Bruce Perry

So go tribal with former Royal Marines officer and expedition leader Bruce Parry as he becomes a guest of six of the world’s most secluded tribes. He tries out their time-honoured traditions, joins in their shamanistic rituals and discovers how the rest of the world is threatening to change their way of life forever. The six secluded tribes are :

Sanema Episode - Tribe - Bruce Perry

The Sanema People
Live in: Upper Caura region of Venezuela
Culture: spiritual rainforest dwellers, partly nomadic
On Bruce’s visit: he trains as a shaman
Part of a larger group of 20,000 people known as the Yanomami, the Sanema people believe that spirits dwell in everything around them. The trees, rocks, rivers and animals all have a spirit with whom the tribal shamans can communicate. Once totally nomadic, the Sanema now settle in villages and cultivate papayas, bananas, yuccas, chillies and sugarcane. Though they live in a biosphere reserve, an area protected by law, their way of life is threatened by the continual destruction of huge swathes of the surrounding rainforest.

babongo Episode - Tribe - Bruce Perry

The Babongo People
Live in: Gabon, western Africa
Culture: forest-dwelling hunter-gatherers of the Congo basin
On Bruce’s visit: he is initiated into the Bwiti religion by ingesting the sometimes fatal drug, Iboga
The Babongo people, who number around 2,000, live alongside several other pygmy tribes in the heavily forested Congo basin. They have no formal system of government or chiefs, and traditionally, each small group within the tribe had rights to the territory where they lived and hunted. They know the forest intimately, and are expert trackers ? they can find a bee hive by following the flight path of a single bee. The countries they live in give them no legal right over their territory, and their way of life is in danger because of deforestation.
NOTE: You can watch Tribe – Babongo overhere….

Adis Episode - Tribe - Bruce Perry

The Adi People
Live in: Adi-Pasi, Arunachal Pradesh, eastern India
Culture: isolated mountain tribe with strong connection to dance as a form of art and entertainment
On Bruce’s visit: he participates in sacrificial ceremonies and samples the tribal delicacies ? the prized ‘toilet pigs’ and roasted rat cake
It’s believed that the Adi people, who live in the Arunachal province of the Himalayas, migrated from southern China during the 16th Century. They are experts at making cane and bamboo items ? their piece de resistance is a 250-foot-long cane and bamboo bridge that connects them to other hill tribes in the area.

Suri Episode - Tribe - Bruce Perry

The Suri People
Live in: southwest Ethiopia near the Sudan border
Culture: sedentary pastoral tribe, tradition of ritualised violence
On Bruce’s visit: he drinks blood and gets a tattoo
The Suri live in a remote location in the desolate mountain region of Ethiopia, and have traditional rivalries with neighbouring tribes. At a young age, most women of the Suri tribe have their bottom teeth removed and their bottom lips pierced and stretched, in order to insert a clay lip plate. The bigger the plate, the more cattle she is worth when it’s time to get married. The young men learn the are of donga, or stick fighting. Modern culture means that many young women are now refusing the lip-piercing ceremony, and young men are turning to guns, instead of sticks, to fight their battles.

Kombai Episode - Tribe - Bruce Perry

The Kombai People
Live in: West Papua in the South Pacific
Culture: cannibalistic nomadic hunter-gatherers
On Bruce’s visit: he’s surrounded by local hunters, all with deadly arrow tips pointing straight at him
There are about 4,000 Kombai people alive today living in one of the last great wilderness areas left on Earth, West Papua. They live a nomadic existence and have no metal tools. They rely on stone axes, wooden stakes and tradition bows and arrows for hunting, building and protection. The tribe used to ? and possibly still does ? practice cannibalism, which has its roots in religion. But never fear, they only kill and eat evil people that are practicing witchcraft against them.

Darchad Episode - Tribe - Bruce Perry

The Darhad People
Live in: outer Mongolia
Culture: nomadic herders
On Bruce’s visit: loses a valuable horse while ‘helping’ to herd livestock
The Darhad herd sheep, cattle and horses and have done so for centuries. They move four times a year, to find fresh pastures and more hospitable weather for their herds. In the northern reaches of Mongolia, temperatures drop below minus 20?C in winter, and the ground is permanently frozen. They live in tents, called ger, which are designed to be lightweight for travel, but warm enough to protect them from the climate. Many families now have satellite TVs, but still travel by horseback because they don’t have roads.

NOTE: You can watch Tribe – Babongo overhere….

Salzburg

Salzburg

One of the attractive places I want to visit in my life is Salzburg – Austria. Salzburg’s Altstadt (old town), on the south bank of the river, is a Baroque fiesta of churches, plazas, courtyards and fountains, oozing the waves of charm that you would expect from this Mozart Mecca. Museums, houses, squares, chocolate bars and liqueurs are all part of one giant homage to Wolfgang. On the picture on the left is the Hohensalzburg Fortress, reachable via taxi or funicular, and it overlooks an ornate, wintry city that gives visitors the sense of ‘being inside a souvenir snowdome’. Salzburg, nestled amid the Alps, has its own, strange, slightly more temperate climate. Winters are freezing, and the rain comes down hard and often. Summers are also quite wet, with above average humidity. The map below shows plenty of places that are worth visiting…

Salzburg
 


Salzburg
Salzburg
Salzburg
Salzburg

Pink Dots

Hello you all…..If your eyes follow the movement of the rotating pink dot, you will only see one color, pink. If you stare at the black + in the center, the moving dot turns to green. Now, concentrate on the black + in the center of the picture. After a short period of time, all the pink dots will slowly disappear, and you will only see a green dot rotating if you’re lucky! It’s amazing how our brain works. There really is no green dot, and the pink ones really don’t disappear. This should be proof enough, we don’t always see what we think we see. And I tell you ; it is quite the same with all the articles on this weblog…. you don’t read what you think you read…. :smiley2_tb:

Pink dot
 

Northern lights

Northern Lights

of all naturally occuring heavenly phenomena, few come close to a night with a magnificent northern lights display. Flickering curtains of dancing light against the dark skies, northern lights is certainly one of the most spectacular of nature’s phenomena. The left picture shows a herd of stars makes tracks across northern lights in a time exposure taken when the temperature reached minus 58° F. [minus 50° C.].” Northern lights is the name of a light phenomenon often seen in the northern regions. The lights have been around since Earth formed an atmosphere -the dinosaurs saw it, early humans saw it and our descendants will se it. The scientific name for the phenomenon is “Aurora Borealis”, aurora for short.


Northen Lights
Northen Lights
Northen Lights
Northen Lights
Northen Lights
Northen Lights
Northen Lights
Northen Lights

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