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East Sussex, United Kingdom
I'm a 62yr old AOL refugee, living on the south coast of England. I love travelling and sharing my photos. I live with Nina and Katinka, my two Maine Coon cats.


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Friday, 31 October 2008

Ranomafana National Park

Hi everybody, I've logged on to show you some of my photos of Ranomafana National Park in Madagascar. It's been really hard to whittle down two thousand photos to a manageable amount and it takes an age to upload them onto Photobucket; but once that's done it's so fast to put them into the journal page. I guess this site has it's good and bad points! I've also spent two and a half hours editing this, the photos seem to big and some are cut off. I'm fed up with it now so to see them in their entirety you can click on each one.
Anyway, onto the rain forest. We had a great guide picked for us, he was so knowledgeable about the forest and wildlife here. He also told us that there are 115 species of birds there and he could imitate every one of them! He did a greatjob making mating calls of the differeent birds and getting them to come over nearer to us. It was nigh on impossible to get shots as the fo rest was so dense, all I kept getting was photos of branches! His name was Teodor and he actually mananged to find the Greater Bamboo Lemur, there's only a few in the forest, they're one of the rarest lemurs in the world. Another rarity Teodor found for us was the Golden Bamboo Lemur.... he was expert at their mating calls too!
So, on with the photos!

There's a river which runs along the edge of this vast 43,500 hectare park, you have to cross the bridge to get into the park. This bridge was blown down in the cyclone but it's been rebuilt now.

These strange fruits are eaten by lemurs.

Here's our first lemur, a Golden Bamboo, a bit fuzzy but he was in a tree doing acrobats ~ I just had to wait for him to stay still for a minute so I could capture him!

We watched him for a while but he was hiding his face from us!

This is a Red Bellied Brown Lemur, he's not very visible, the trees were very dense.

The trees were just so tall and formed a good canopy to block sunlight!

These are a kind of fig that Teodor is pointing out. Brown Mouse Lemurs eat them.

More trees!

These are grave stones, Teodor told us that they're around five hundred years old and were the graves of the forest people. When Ranomafana first became a park there were people living in it naked. They've since been given a section of rain forest to live in which is out of bounds to visitors. They must have very tough feet to walk through there with no shoes!

I thought this butterfly might have opened his wings for me!

I saw this and thought of you Jan! Lol!

This is the Greater Bamboo Lemur chewing on a bamboo stalk. These are poisononous to other animals but the bamboo lemur has something in his stomach, nobody knows what yet, that counteracts the cyanide in the bamboo.

Look at that dear little face, he was totally unfazed by us watching and taking photos, he seemed to enjoy being a celebrity for a while! Lol!

Another chew on the bamboo!

He looks like he's eating a stick of seaside rock!

He was so sweet!

I thought the constant flas bulbs going off would frighten him but he's obviously used to it.... or maybe he was very hungry!

It was hard work getting through the undergrowth at times, plus there were a lot of muddy slippery banks to negotiate! Lucky I had good walking boots on!

I'd joked with Teodor that I needed a cup of coffee; he found this.... a wild coffee bush! Now all I needed was a kettle, cup and coffee pot! Lol!

There's something about an old rain forest, I've been to them in Borneo, Hawaii, Peru and Brazil. It's so peaceful in them, the modern world could be a million miles away!

This is called the Travellers palm as it holds water in it's trunk. It's the symbol of Madagascar and is on their bank notes. I'll show you a photo of the whole tree one day.

Rita and Stuart climbing down the steps. I was calling out to them what trees they shouldn't hold on to, some of them were very loose and you could pull them out of the ground. Not very good to steady yourself with!

This beautiful creature is a Fossa or civet cat. He's not actually a cat at all but that's his common name! They're nocturnal, it was just getting dark and we found him curled up asleep. Teodor threw a few pieces of chicken to him to get him to come out, he duly obliged! He had the most beautiful coat and markings. They're the only predator in Madagascar and will eat lemurs.

Eating his meat!

He didn't seem to mind the camera either!

He seemed quite happy to pose for us enjoying his fifteen minutes of fame!

I think he's smelt some live prey that's just woken up!

Who me?! No, I'm not really a brown mouse lemur.... it's a disguise I swear! Honest!

I'm off! Don't want to end up as his supper!

This tree was laden with epiphytes clinging to the branches.

Left to right, Barry, Yvonne, Maureen, Teodor, Carol and me.

The view from our hotel lodge.

Can you see him in the centre of the photo?!

Here's a close up of him; he popped his little head out of the muddy bank to say hello!

Trees near to our lodges.

This was my home for three nights. It was a lovely place but the only drawback was that there were constant power cuts. Sometimes as many as four in an evening!

So there concludeth the rainforest tour! We saw a lot more lemurs in the desert at Isalo National Park, our next destination. Isalo looks so much like the American mid west that I expected to see Rowdy Yates come riding by on his horse! Lol! You'll see what I mean when I post the pictures!
Have a great weekend and stay warm ~ here in the UK it's absolutely freezing out there!
I've just changed the layout here so the photos show up in their entirety and my side bar is now a bottom bar!


Jeannette said...

All the photos are lovely and it looks so warm not to say hot there. Brrrr, it is so cold tonight. I would love to have seen all those delightful animals.

gina said...

i really enjoyed your pix and the captions and stories that went with it. what an adventure!!

Connie said...

I think I would be scared out there in the wilderness.So glad you didn't have to bed down out in the wild with all the critters.
Your photos are fabulous,thanks for sharing.It's nice to see other parts of this world we otherwise don't get to see or even know of.

Julia said...

Love all the shots. I watched the movie Baraka a couple of nights ago and thought about you. All the beautiful scenery set to music.

Joan said...

Hi Jeannette you must have had the patience of Job to post all tose wonderful photographs as I know how long it takes to do so.What a great adventure you must have had. Love Joan.

Chris/cacklinrosie101 said...

Oh goodness, Jeannnette, that lemur is just the cutest little creature. The fossa is pretty also. It amazes me how their colors just blend right into the environment. Can you imagine building those steps?

Your place and view was spectacular. I'm supposing their electric isn't quite up to the standards in the UK or the States. Love, love the pictures!

You will find that you would need to resize them to fit which is maddening but I didn't mind clicking on them for the full shots. xx

Sandra said...

Thanks for the tour of the rainforest Jeannette. I wish I could have been there with you. I love Lemurs and I was looking forward to your photos of them, they are so beautiful and cuddly though I`m sure they don`t let you get close to them. I must put down Madagaskar as a possibility for a future holiday. Note to self, ask Jim to do some more!

Love Sandra xxxx

Linda :) said...

A wonderful stroll through the rain forest!! and you are so funny, you must keep everyone laughing on the tours....

lisa jo said...

the pics were amazing....those lemurs were so cute!!!! I love seeing all your pics, always. XOXO

Lainey Laine said...

I enjoyed that Jeannette. Amazing pics! I love the little Lemur! Love Laine xxx

Lisa said...

The photos are great, I love the lemurs. They have such cute little faces.

I would love to visit a rain forest. You are lucky to have seen so many and the wonderful creatures who call them home.

My Creative Spirit award given to me by Gina

My Creative Spirit award given to me by Gina

Superior Scribbler award given to me by Jeannette

Superior Scribbler award given to me by Jeannette

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