Everyone in Cape Town said we were crazy to try and travel this far, but the main objective was to reach Addo Elephant National Park, an elephant preserve just north of Port Elizabeth. In addition to a myriad of lions, zebra other game (oh my!), this nationally-protected land is home to over 450 elephants... a staggering number when you consider that there were merely 40 at the time of the park's inception. Despite the park's success in allowing elephants to successfully mate and grow here, one of the main issues in this particular elephant community is that tusks are being genetically bred out of the female elephants. Thus - they recently brought in 10 non-native males with tusks to try and reintroduce this trait in to the community. So far, it's supposedly working.
The other interesting development with Addo Elephant National Park is the recent addition of nearly 300,000 acres of marine reserve, just south of the main park and encompassing a good section of the Indian Ocean marine coastal environment. While we didn't have enough time to go to this particular section, I guess that means I've gained yet another proverbial dangling carrot to some day go back and check out the development.
Here are some shots from the day (low-res to accommodate the internet connection here), to give you a taste of where we were. Enjoy!
|Zebras & Kudu silhouetted in the African sun.|
|Zebras at a drinking hole. The trail behind them is the one established animal trail coming to this spot... as a former Leave No Trace employee, I got a kick out of this!|
|Takin' a walk.|
|Favorite photo from the day.|
|Da dum, da dum... da dum, da dum...|
|Kudus... Workin' it out.|