Elephant Dung Makes Gardens GROW!


What a great night-I returned to my Tsavene house yesterday from Chilo Gorge lodge, to pick up Dad, a load of plants and many bags of elephant poop that I have collected from our waterhole for the Chilo Gardens…! We will return to Chilo today to begin the long process of re-vitalising the gardens.

A herd of 300 buffalo came through in the early evening, drinking and snorting at our waterhole, and, as expected, they were followed by the lions and hyenas! I lay in bed until 4. 30 am listening , then as the roaring and yodelling increased, I happily got up to come and investigate-can not see anything at the waterhole now-it is just getting light, but the cats are calling CLOSE by-females by the sound of them….what an inspiring sound to have drifting in the windows as I update my blog and drink tea. Very special.

I wonder if Graham and Jane, two visitors at Senuko lodge, in Africa for the first time, can hear them….

The three hundred buffalo have headed off, away from the pesky lions…maybe as soon as it is light I will collect some buffalo poop with our two gardeners, but judging by the close calls of the lions, perhaps I will leave that collection for another, cat-less day….

Elephant poop is very mild, great mulch and fibre-so I mix it with all my soils, it never burns the plants as other, stronger dung might do. I would never unnecessarily remove dung from the environment, but around our waterhole we often have up to three successive groups of elephants following each other in a single night, each group being over 30 animals-lots of poop to spare.

Seems like other have found the same great use for it…

Elephant Dung Makes Perfect Compost at City Safari in Tel Aviv | Green Prophet.

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About wineandwilddogs

Lin Barrie The Save Valley Conservancy stretches along the upper reaches of the great Save River in the south east of Zimbabwe. The Gonarezhou National Park laps against the southern banks of the Save River and between these two nestles the Malilangwe Wildlife Reserve. These three celebrated wildlife areas form part of the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area, (GLTFCA)- a unique wilderness jewel which is home to the “Big Five” (endangered Black and White rhinos, elephants, buffalo, lion, leopard) and the ”Little Six” (Klipspringer, Suni, Duiker, Steenbok, Sharpe's Grysbok and Oribi). Endangered African wild dogs, Cheetah, Brown hyena, Bat-eared foxes and a host of special birds and plants contribute to the immense variety of this ecosystem. Communities around the GLTFCA contribute to innovative partnerships with National Parks and the private sector, forming a sound base on which to manage social, economic and environmental issues. This is home to artist and writer Lin Barrie and her life partner, conservationist Clive Stockil. Expressing her hopes, fears and love for this special ecosystem with oil paints on canvas, Lin Barrie believes that the essence of a landscape, person or animal, can only truly be captured by direct observation. Lin Barrie states: “Through my art, and my writing, I feel an intimate connection with the natural world, and from my extensive field sketches of wild animals, people and landscapes, I create larger works on canvas. Lin's work is in various public and private collections in South Africa, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Australia, England, Canada, Sweden and the United States of America. She is represented by galleries in South Africa, Zimbabwe, England, Kenya and Florida, USA.
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