Here in southern Africa, there is a type of bird called the social weaver. Or sociable weaver. We happened to be camped under a tree that contained a social weaver nest, so we spent a fair bit of time watching these interesting little birds go about their daily affairs!
First of all, if you are under a social weaver nest, you know it well before you get to the tree. The nest is HUGE.
You can see the huge nest in the tree above our table.
The nest of the social weaver is the largest of any bird in the world. A single structure can easily contain over 100 pairs of bird, plus their young ones!
A social weaver.
When we arrived at the campsite, we figured that it was an old abandoned nest because there weren't any birds around. However, I did point out to Ruth the amount of bird poop on the ground directly under the nest.
Sure enough, later that day they arrived.
But, they're friendly little birds and we enjoyed watching their chatter. They definitely seem to have a social structure. Some were busy collecting twigs and grass for their structure, and it seemed like one was in charge of where they were placed. I guess he was the structural engineer!
We jokingly called their nest a "condominium". Watching these birds for a couple of hours (while having our "sundowners" (happy hour!), we have come to the conclusion that biologists haven't quite got these complex birds quite figured out!
Yesterday morning, we were on the trails again. This time, by 7:10am, and we only had a 10 km hike planned.
Wasn't long before we came across this fellow. This small agile antelope is called a klipspringer.
Look how he blends into his surroundings!
And speaking of that, we really didn't see much other wildlife. We did see lots of wildlife poop. But we think that many of the animals do so well at camouflage. Here's another example of that...
This is a toad grasshopper.
At first, I really did think this was some kind of toad! Only reason I noticed him at all was because he moved to get out of Ruth's way. He had jumped onto the side of a rock, and even when you knew he was there, you could hardly see him!
Here's Ruth, enjoying the desert.
This wall was built by the German military during the first world war. This part of Namibia was a German colony at the time.
Another view of the campground at Klein Aus Vista. Can you spot our white truck?
We were tired and in bed before 9:00pm last night. It seemed that the wind was picking up, and we've learned that one of the drawbacks of being in a tent is that if it's windy, it's not going to be a good night's sleep!