Malilangwe dam stretches several kilometres in length and is my playground several times a week when I go paddling in my kayak. I’ve always loved kayaking and did it competitively when I was at University. But I haven’t paddled since then.
Having moved to Malilangwe I’ve been able to take to the solitude of the water again and see a very different Malilangwe to what I see out their daily on my filming adventures.
The dam is alive with activity. 30-40 hippos make the dam their home. As do many crocodiles of different sizes. These monster submarines keep me on my toes, well actually, IN my kayak, when I’m paddling. Falling out is not an option. But so far they’ve been very accommodating with my presence.
The dam is full of water birds. White-breasted Cormorants are nesting at the moment in the dead trees that stand jutting out the water.
A pair of Goliath Herons too, have taken advantage of these dead trees for their nesting safety.
Lining the shores are flocks of White-faced Duck, always whistling with their overhead approach to the dam when calling others already settled.
Egyptian Geese seem to be constantly at war with each other protecting their piece of shoreline from any intruders and their calls are a constant vibe on the dam.
Marabou Storks patrol the shoreline looking for any fish in the shallows or dead ones that might have washed up.
Great White Egrets walk the shallows hunting for small fish.
And I’ve even been lucky enough to see the highly elusive African Finfoot. (Sorry no photos of that elusive fellow)
But it’s not always happy times for all the creatures. A subadult hippo bull died on the shoreline from injuries sustained in a fight with another bull. The next morning when I arrived on the scene 15 hyaenas had already eaten their way through the carcass. No easy feat but with the strongest jaws in the animal kingdom…….they can!
All they left for the Vultures and Marabou Storks were some bones and a piece of skin.