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An aardvark in daylight and perfect visual

- News, Wildlife, Ranger's Blog

Thato, Rhulan's ranger, was on his way to a lion sighting. But then, quite unexpectedly, a radio message came in and a little later a brief but nevertheless extraordinary sighting happened that you don't see every day: an aardvark!

Thato tells us: “We saw it yesterday. We were on our way to lions from a drink spot. It was was around 5.40pm, and it was already getting dark. Godfrey called me to ask where I was as we were not far apart.

He told me he has an aardvark that’s very relaxed and I should make my way before it got too dark. We quickly made our way and upon getting there, it was still there but we couldn’t see it properly as it was behind bushes.”

What is an aardvark? As burrowing mammals with porcine snouts, aardvarks are true to their name, which translates to “earth pig” in the Afrikaans language. It is a nocturnal animals, so it was quite special for Thato to find one by daylight. Aardvarks use their long noses and keen sense of smell to sniff out ants and termites, which they lap up with an anteater-like tongue covered in sticky saliva. They use their long, powerful claws to tear open termite mounds, as well as dig underground burrows in which they sleep and care for their young.

Thato: “I told everyone to climb off the game viewer and keep quiet and still. Few seconds later it came to a game path and headed our way. We had the perfect visual. But it soon caught our scent and moved back but not far. It was very special!”

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