Batting for Bats#TM2021

Photo of Batting for Bats#TM2021 by pragati09

5-6 million mammal migration!

Not on land,but in the cloud filled sky.

The orange sky that is soon  full of specks of black.

You forget time and are in awe to these creatures who synchronoise their flights in multi layers and never collide with each other.

Here I am batting  for the BATS- to be more precise the straw coloured fruit bats.

We went to this park last year but were late and saw just a couple of thousand of bats.We vowed to come back again.

Photo of Batting for Bats#TM2021 1/5 by pragati09
Artist depiction of Kasanka

Fact file

These migratory bats start assembling in Kasanka National park from the neighbouring countries of Congo,Zimbabwe,Namibia.

These annual visitors are here to feast on the musuku fruit  from October to December.

Although you can see these flying over many provinces(states) of Zambia but it is at Kasanka that they are at their glory best.

Photo of Batting for Bats#TM2021 2/5 by pragati09
The advnture trip trip to viewing platform 

The experience!

Be a day vistor or stay overnight in one of the three types of accomodations-luxurious chalets at Wasa lodge ,BB at Luwombwa or camp at river bend choices are immense.Book your bat viewing tour with the lodge or just look up in sky from wherever you find yourself.....and wait for the bats to make a grand entry.

The tour.

You will be accompanied on open 4x4  safari drive with an armed guard,safari guide and driver.There are no predators in this national park but armed guard is to protect you from hippos,elephants,crocs.The safari vehicle is parked at a point and then you walk...what an adventure that is as you stomp thtough water logged path, take in varied vegetation,spot wild flowers,see small animals like moles scuttling away ,hear gurgles of waterfall

You reach one of the several viewing platforms in evening or early morning . Climb up.Ready.A sight and sound you will never forget.That sound of waterfall is in fact of bats persuading each other to wake up. The first few impatient ones take flight.Soon the others, who don't want to miss the feast, follow and the sky is full of bats.You capture upmpteen pictures,video but the actual sight is beyond capturing .God's creations are infact unique.

Photo of Batting for Bats#TM2021 3/5 by pragati09
As sun goes down the bats wake up.

The next 30 minutes you crane your neck -this direction and that direction as you try to take in it all.Then the number dwindles till there is none.

How can millions just vanish?

Photo of Batting for Bats#TM2021 4/5 by pragati09
 the whole sky is filled with these magnificient squeaky creatures.

You start the walk back again to the safari vechile and back to yet another magnificent sight in your lodge- the sumptuous three course meal.A open  shower under the star filled sky with the wood fire warmed water washes all the tiredness.You settle in for an early night, punctured with grunts of hippos and the rustling of miombo branches over head.

Photo of Batting for Bats#TM2021 5/5 by pragati09
The lodge opposite Lake Wasa.

One night stay with single bat viewing cost around $300 for a family of four(includes meals).Kasanka National park is about 520 km away from the capital Lusaka.Many tour operators offer customised tours to this park or you can plan the trip  yourself.

2021 indeed is proving to be the year when dreams come true.