Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe
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View images of Davison's Camp: Davison's
DAVISON'S CAMP RATES: Davison's Camp
DAVISON'S CAMP - HWANGE NATIONAL PARK, ZIMBABWE
Davison's Camp lies deep in Hwange National Park, in the south-eastern Linkwasha Concession - one of the best game viewing areas of the entire Park. It is a classic African tented camp, with the units tastefully hidden beneath a grove of false mopane trees, overlooking a waterhole and open plain.
Accommodation For images of Davison's Camp, click Davison's Camp
Named after the founder of Hwange National Park and its first warden, Ted Davison, this camp, with its 8 tents and a family tent, offers a wonderful bush experience. Both the tents and the separate main area, comprising a lounge, dining room, and open campfire area and pool, look out over the productive waterhole.
Activities at Davison's Camp include game drives in open 4x4 vehicles, or guided walks in the early mornings, while during the siesta hours, guests can view wildlife coming down to the waterhole to drink from their tent veranda or the main area.
Game viewing is productive year-round in the Linkwasha Concession and wildlife frequently encountered here includes lion, large herds of elephant, buffalo, leopard, white rhino, spotted hyaena, southern giraffe, sable, blue wildebeest, impala, common waterbuck and reedbuck. There are a number of large, open plains areas which make for excellent game viewing; in summer, wildebeest, zebra and eland are found in abundance here, while in winter the waterholes are magnets around which elephant in enormous numbers congregate to drink.
Bird life in the area is prolific (400+) and varied, with species frequenting the teak woodlands as well as those typical of the drier Kalahari being present.
Hwange National Park
Hwange National Park is the largest game reserve in Zimbabwe at 14 500 km² with varied habitats and vegetation types. The park is predominately Kalahari sandveld supporting teak and mopane woodlands, dry Acacia scrub and is interspersed with saltpans and
grasslands that support enormous species diversity and provide a true wilderness experience. Both Makalolo Plains and Little Makalolo are situated in the 31 000-hectare Makalolo concession.
Located on the border with Botswana, Hwange was proclaimed some 75 years ago and has served as a haven for one of the densest concentrations of game in Africa. In particular, its great herds of Cape buffalo and elephant (nearly 30 000) are a sight to see. Hwange has some of the highest mammal diversity for any national park in the world. With over 100 species the diversity is incredible: slender mongoose, yellow mongoose, banded mongoose, Selous mongoose, dwarf mongoose, honey badger, black-backed jackal, bat-eared fox, side-striped jackal, lesser bushbaby, vervet monkey, baboon, porcupine, aardwolf, spotted hyaena, caracal, leopard, African wildcat, lion, scrub hare, southern giraffe, hippo, springhare, warthog and Burchell's zebra.
Antelope often seen in the area include common duiker, eland, roan antelope, impala, kudu, sable, steenbok, waterbuck and blue wildebeest. White rhino is another special sight to see here; Wilderness Safaris has recently helped translocate a number of these wonderful beasts into the protected park.
The park is also home to a varied bird community. Typical drier Kalahari birds include Red-billed Spurfowl, Crimson-breasted Shrike, Kalahari Scrub-Robin, Cut-throat Finch, Red-eyed Bulbul and Southern Pied Babbler. A Bat Hawk and African Hobby (summer only) are good finds here, which are sometimes seen at dusk hunting bats and swifts. The plains are alive with pipits, larks and wheatears like African Pipit, Dusky Lark (in summer) and Capped Wheatear. Raptors are plentiful including Martial Eagle, four vulture species and accipiters like the Shikra. In the summer months the bird list is greatly increased by migratory species like Southern Carmine Bee-eaters, Black Kites, Broad-billed Rollers, various cuckoo species, Abdims Storks and European Bee-eater.
Bird life in the area is prolific, with more than 400 species found, and varied as species frequent teak woodlands as well as those more typical of the drier Kalahari being present.
As the concessionaire of a large area in south-eastern Hwange National Park, Wilderness Safaris has taken responsibility for many aspects of the management of this 100 000ha area.
During the dry season, water sources become scarce and Hwange has some 57 boreholes to pump water from deep underground to sustain the wildlife in the area. Wilderness Safaris has drilled and supplied engines, piping and the pumps on 18 of the 57 operational boreholes in the entire Park. Since February 2002, we have taken on responsibility for pumping 22 boreholes 24 hours a day, thereby supporting the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Management both logistically and financially. This includes daily refuelling and maintenance and a full oil and filter change every 250 hours!
We have also joined the National Park in jointly combating the effects of poaching along the Park's southern boundary, an area beyond our concession. Along the reserve boundary itself and also in the community areas beyond it, a large variety of mammal species fall victim to snaring, with larger species such as elephant and buffalo breaking free of their wire nooses and heading back to the refuge of the Park. Wilderness Safaris and the Wilderness Safaris Wildlife Trust provide funding and logistical support in the form of transport, fuel and rations to the anti-poaching units of the National Park.
Even white rhino appear to be increasing and in order to bolster and ensure this trend another joint project between Wilderness Safaris, the Zimbabwe Department of National Parks and Wildlife Management and the Wilderness Safaris Wildlife Trust successfully translocated a substantial breeding nucleus of the species into this area of Hwange. The first five animals arrived in July 2007 and were temporarily held in bomas before being released into the wild.
Research on this threatened species as well as lion and wild dog is supported by our staff in the area, both in terms of logistical support of the researchers themselves and also observations and monitoring conducted while on game drive. In the case of the lion study the long-term effects of sport hunting on the species have been examined by a team from Oxford with the result being a significant reduction by the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Management of the number of lions on quota for sport hunting on lands lying along Hwange's boundaries.
Near Hwange National Park lies a little school that caters for a number of children from surrounding villages. The area suffers from poverty and lack of amenities and Ngamo School is no exception. Linkwasha, the nearest Wilderness camp, has begun to help by providing some basic equipment as well as taking guests to visit - to get a glimpse of another, poorer world.
Future plans for community involvement in Zimbabwe include the establishment of annual Children in the Wilderness camps and a comprehensive follow-up programme.
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