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Friday
Jul282017

Impromptu Forest Walk 

You wouldn’t think that being a Community volunteer you would be able to see any more than the thriving and fascinating culture that is the Malagasy way of life. But going to Ambalahonko to visit the mariners and foresters on camp turned out to be more than a couple of days of chilling in a hammock with a book and the sound of the sea and some tropical bird or other.

On the first night we saw the critically endangered mouse lemur, which can only be found in Madagascar! Strongly reminiscent of the “cute and cuddly” Mort from Madagascar, I couldn’t believe we were seeing one in the flesh, feeding on the nectar from a giant banana plant, almost oblivious to our presence under Tom’s red torchlight. I’m pretty sure my mouth was open in awe the whole time we watched. The following night we went on a proper night-walk through the forest – the best time to see Madagascar’s unique reptiles. But not only did we see several chameleons (including a fully-grown panther chameleon), and brilliantly-coloured humongous spiders (two of which were aptly named ‘seven-legged Barbara’ and ‘even-bigger-than-Barbara Diane’), but someone spotted a Madagascar pygmy kingfisher bird asleep on a branch right above our heads with its head tucked in itself so that it looked like a ball of feathers with feet. To contrast I also managed to freak everyone out by spotting the ugliest slimiest-looking cricket-type bug hanging on underneath a leaf! It was a real privilege to see some of both of the types of life Nosy-Be has to offer.

By Louise Chartron - Madagascar Community Volunteer

Find out more about Frontier Madagascar Projects.

Check out what volunteers in Madagascar are up to right now!

 

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