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Animals next to lodges

Washington DC...
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31 posts
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Animals next to lodges

Perhaps a naive question, but how are dangerous animals such as hippos, rhinos, kept out of the lodges? I've been reading the websites and reviews - the lodges seem to advertise having animals wander into the grounds and attracting them with watering holes.....

My wife is a bit concerned having witnessed a hippo attack when she was a child staying at a different reserve.

Gold Coast...
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for Kruger National Park
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1. Re: Animals next to lodges

Hi There

Sorry cannot help with Madikwe but if no one answers maybe try emailing the specific lodge you are booked in at and ask if they are fenced. Generally if lodges are unfenced you will have an escort back and forth to your room but even a fenced lodge does not keep everything our unless it is electrified which then will detract somewhat from the experience.

While I understand your wifes concerns there should be guidlelines to follow staying in these places, after all the safety of guests should be the number one priority in any decent lodge, though generally humans are not seen as 'prey' in these places. I have stayed where lions, elephants and leopards have roamed through and although not common, you do need to be on your guard. The other side is that generally in an unfenced lodge the animals that roam the grounds are of the more gentle kind, like warthogs, antelope and monkeys, adding a lovely ambience.

Contact the lodge with your concerns and see what they have to say, then they will know your wifes concerns in advance, and you will find it is nice to have some personal contact in advance with the people anyway.

Washington DC...
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2. Re: Animals next to lodges

In my experience the first thing that happens when you arrive at any camp/lodge is the reading of the rules. First among those will usually be not to walk by yourself after night or before the sun rises. Camps will tell you that someone will escort you to wherever you are going at those times. I haven't been to a camp yet that hasn't told me it's safe to walk through the camp during the day (but they also say keep your eyes open). As the Sandmans says (say?) (1) animals seen during the day are the gentler kind and (2) fences in camps are usually seen as a negative.

On a couple of occasions there has been a hippo in the camp I was staying (usually in a watery location like the Delta, on a river in the Mara or by lakes in Tanzania) but the escorts easily maneuvered around them. On many more occasions I've either gone to sleep or woken in the night to the sound of a hippo munching grass near the tent. It's a wonderful sound that I often think about at home in between trips.

Edited: 27 December 2013, 01:12
Gold Coast...
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for Kruger National Park
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3. Re: Animals next to lodges

Nice one Steve, haven't had the hippos that close! We do hear them all night in the Kruger Camps but they are fenced, [kiddies stay there after all]

I must add that there is no experience like an elephant drinking out of your own pool either!

Washington DC...
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4. Re: Animals next to lodges

Thank you for the replies. We are staying at a bush camp that is not fenced and has bathrooms that aren't en suite. I'm sure it is safe, as they assured me they have never had any incidents which I trust is true. They also say there are no hippos as they are not near a river. But I saw rhinos on the photos. Don't rhinos also freak out sometimes?

I guess it's not much different than bears that we get when camping in North America, and just have to follow precautions when camping.

Pretoria, South...
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5. Re: Animals next to lodges

Hi Daniel,

I've probably spent several hundred nights in open bush camps, including overlanding in some of the really wild areas of Southern Africa, and there have been so few incidents as to be negligible. Most wild animals will give way or not be bothered by you, and you have nothing to fear.

I've also worked at that specific bush camp, and I can assure you that you'll be fine. Exercise caution when going to the bathroom at night.

Washington DC...
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6. Re: Animals next to lodges

Great to know :) Can't wait.

7. Re: Animals next to lodges

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