Location: Richard's Bay, South Africa
Today, half of the crew on Argo woke up from their first slumber in a non-rocking bed. It was a luxury that flew right by because we were woken up at 4:30 for the adventures in Hluhluwe Imfolozi Park. A massive game reserve that per-hector has most numerous amount of animals in South Africa. We were loaded into two open-air trucks and drove an hour to the park, getting to see some of the beautiful countryside along the way. Right when we entered the park a massive African elephant followed by a pack of Chacma baboons strolled passed us, a great way to start the adventure. We saw 4 or the “BIG 5” (Lion, Elephant, Buffalo, Rhino, Leopard). We saw a pack of lions 14 strong along a riverbank. Numerous encounters with the endangered white rhinos, one of which a couple were mating.We were lucky to see majestic elephants casually walking throughout the park and the mighty cape buffalos showing off their horns. Unfortunately we never spotted a leopard amongst the shrubs and rocks. Besides the 4 of the Big 5, we saw numerous other animals including many exotic birds, kudus, warthogs, zebras, giraffes, blue wildebeests, vervet monkeys, wild dogs, nyalas, impalas, steenboks and mongooses. It was a very successful and memorable safari experience.
We got back to the Argo exhausted around 5 P.M where we quickly had a delicious meal of Sloppy Joe’s created by Josh K (Canada). After dinner and clean up we had our first round of literature review presentations for our oceanography class. All seven presentations were wonderfully preformed and very knowledgeable.
Annie = Iron Fertilization, Griffen = Aquaculture, Caisha = Marine Tourism / recreation diving, Josh K = oil spills, Morella = sea turtles, Maggie = coral bleaching, and Siva = anthropogenic impact of nitrogen and phosphorus in the worlds rivers. After presentations anchor watch continued. The night went by with no problems, Argo slept peacefully.