Next stop, we set up camp at Kruger National park. We had to set up tents for the first time on the trip. This time I got to room with Emily. This place was designed for camping and they had little huts to stay in and a laundry/ dish area. The following morning we woke up at 5:15am and went out for sightseeing. Immediately we saw a white rhino and some black rhinos, which is really rare because they’re endangered and are threatened by poachers, so we felt really lucky to have gotten to see them. Later on we had lecture with one of Kruger’s ecologist. He lectured us on the terrain, weathers, waters, and ecology of Kruger and how the differences impacts the forms of life you will find in each area. I really enjoyed his lecture and learned a lot. There was a point where he was trying to tell us that we shouldn’t favor a certain species, like elephants because there’s an overpopulation of elephants in Kruger and that negatively impacts other species. And although I don’t fully disagree with that point, I don’t know if the real solution is to kill off as many elephants possible. I think that’s a temporary solution. I think the only reason why there are too many elephants in such a small area is because people take up almost all other space. We have taken most land from the animals. I feel like every issue that we’ve talked about in Africa at a core, has resulted from human impact and so the only solution they find is to see how we can manage the non-human animals- even if it means hurting them instead of trying to solve our problem of human overpopulation. This not only kills other species but kills the planet itself. At the end of the day we did a night tour that was kinda disappointing because we didn’t see much other than hyenas and elephants which we saw all the time in Kruger. Luckily that following morning we had a whole day scheduled for a Safari sightseeing. We saw impalas, buffalo, zebra, hippos, giraffe elephants. And then we saw a bunch of vultures circling in the sky. At a closer look, we saw that it was a poached Rhino. This hit all of us on the reality of how severely these animals were being hunted. It’s really upsetting and unfortunate. We went to Skukuza park after did some souvenir shopping. Something happened with my card and it wasn’t going through, so Louis was kind enough to lend me the money. We finished off the day at camp playing Ninja and taking pictures in trees like monkeys. It was a good way to end our time in Kruger.
Our next camping site, Swadini, would be the last place we stay at. Swadini was located in the midst of beautiful mountains and canyons, it was wonderful to wake up to every morning. I was tented with Jenny again. Zack, Hailey and I went around exploring Swadini especially because we heard the other ecolife group was in the premises so we wanted to see if we could spot them. We found their campsite we they weren’t there. Later on we did get to meet them. All the girls, including Zack were attracted to the one guy in that other ecolife group. Swadini was the only place with a heated pool, so we went to enjoy that and played games because it had been too cold the whole time to enter a normal pool. The following day we did game capturing with Dr.Rita, a wildlife vet. We worked with Sabel and spent most of the day giving them IM and SubQ injections. We spent like 2 hours trying to catch one buffalo but we were unsuccessful. The ride was fun with Emily, Jenny, Nicole and Dr.Rita anyway.