Journal Entry: Day 269

(Nomad: Day 1500),
Mbombela, South Africa,

These last days I became obsessed with hippos. I really want to record them from a good distance and with good acoustics. My obsession with hippos actually started in the Masai Mara in Kenya, when I first heard hippos from close.
The other day, I went to Isimangaliso park again, and on the Westside after driving all day, I found a hide that was overlooking a pond in which was a family of hippos, I got marvelous sounds from a little distance (about 50m away) but with wonderful natural acoustics. I stayed there for 2 hours until the sunset. Then on the day after I finally got my boat excursion on my way, I had the boat for myself, we could approach the hippo up to 2m away. There I captured very detailed sounds, although these were mostly grunts and snorts. Sadly they were not very talkative.
After these recordings, I took the road and left St Lucia in direction of the North, I am now very close to the Kruger Park in Nelspruit (now named Mbombela), here I recorded more hippos as I stay the night in a cabin next to the ‘crocodile river’ in which a family of hippos regularly hang around. I could easily approach the hippos, and again I recorded for almost 3 hours, but got only 5 or 6 sounds, they were not talkative much. Also in this place, you can hear the road from far.
Today I am going to a chimpanzee sanctuary, and another wildlife park, and will try to record in a pet refuge; then after I will head toward Hazyview, another town 1 hour away.

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