Madagascar: Like Nowhere Else We've Ever Travelled

Elizabeth Fieldus

05 Mar 2019

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NWS client Elizabeth recounts her amazing trip to the "Red Island"

Thanks to the wonderful advice we received from Natural World Safaris and the excellent implementation of our plans by Oliver, our Destination Specialist, we had a wonderful time travelling in Madagascar during September/October 2018. Our focus was the endemic wildlife of Madagascar, and we saw plenty of it! Our sightings ranged from the tiniest lemur of all (the Madame Berthe’s mouse lemur) at Kirindy to marvellously weird collared nightjars at Andasibe, helmet vangas with their brightly hued plumage at Masaola and charismatic Coquerel’s sifakas at Anjajavy

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We enjoyed the antics of so many animals over the course of our trip, including birds aplenty and an array of brightly coloured insects and reptiles. Of course the lemurs were the highlight and we managed to see 25 different species – they are such enchanting primates! This didn't come about without effort, but our guides in the national parks at each location were knowledgeable and were very keen for us to see for ourselves as many animals as we could.

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On our very last evening in this intriguing country – which, we all agreed, is like nowhere else we've ever travelled – we were even lucky enough to go out with a researcher to find the elusive aye-aye. The aye-aye is one of Madagascar’s 100 or so lemur species, but their bizarre appearance sets them apart from all others on the island. With their scraggly hair, bulging eyeballs, elongated fingers and secretive nocturnal lifestyle, it's not hard to see why aye-ayes were once feared as bad omens here, but thankfully these fascinating creatures are now receiving the conservation attention they deserve!

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Our accommodation was also wonderful, as were our guides and drivers. We'll never forget our guide and driver for the journey on the RN7 from the capital, Antananarivo, to Toliara. Njiva and Mparani were excellent and we felt totally safe and happy in their care. Even Air Madagascar, notorious for delays and cancellations, were not a problem and we had no hitches with the private airlines that took us to remote locations such as Maroansetra and Anjajavay Private Reserve. A highlight was a visit to an organisation dear to NWS, the Kianjavato Ahmanson Field Station, where we planted trees to contribute to their reforestation programme. All in all a wonderful time was had by the three of us.


Until the next time,
Alan, Elizabeth and Caroline Fieldus
Melbourne, Australia

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