Raffia Palm and Palmnut Vulture
Date posted: 2012-06-13
Raphia or Raffia they remain impressive.
The Raffia palms (Raphia) are a genus of twenty species of palms native to tropical regions of Africa, especially Madagascar, with one species (R. taedigera) also occurring in Central and South America. They grow up to 16 m tall and are remarkable for their compound pinnate leaves, the longest in the plant kingdom; leaves of R. regalis up to 25.11 m long and 3 m wide are known. The plants are either monocarpic, flowering once and then dying after the seeds are mature, or hapaxanthic, with individual stems dying after fruiting but the root system remaining alive and sending up new stems.
Raffia Palms (Raphia)
Date posted: 2012-06-01
The Raffia palms (Raphia) are a genus of twenty species of palms native to tropical regions of Africa.
Kosi Bay is known for it's raffia forest.
They grow up to 16 m tall and are remarkable for their compound pinnate leaves, the longest in the plant kingdom; leaves of R. regalis up to 25.11 m long and 3 m wide are known.
The plants are either monocarpic, flowering once and then dying after the seeds are mature, or hapaxanthic, with individual stems dying after fruiting but the root system remaining alive and sending up new stems.
The palm nut vulture makes it's nest on top of the palm.
Memela - "Simple and Authentic"
Date posted: 2012-06-01
Willis and Janie (yanni) were great hosts and although the lodging is simple (outdoor toilet and shower, battery lights), the food was great and the guiding professional. We were able to see the Palm Nut Vulture, a particular wish, and also found baby loggerhead turtles at night hatching and heading for the ocean. Willis had only said he would try since it was a bit late in the season, but he made arrangements with a great guide and the interest of both in the resource was quite touching. He has great contacts and can arrange pretty much anything you would like at a reasonable rate. We were lucky enough to be there with his Mom and Dad as well, so we got to know the family - longtime SA, and his wife, Janie, as well. They have a lovely child, Lily, and we all shared a braai on the beach in addition to the regular fine meals at home. As an additional plus, Willis knows his birds, so if you have a special one you'd like, I would recommend that you try him.
This photo of Memela Bush Lodge, Maputaland is courtesy of TripAdvisor
Kosi Bay Birding
Date posted: 2012-06-01
In Kosi Bay you can find the biggest mammal (whales), the largest land mammal (elephants), the largest sea turtles (leatherback turtle), the largest fish (whaleshark), the smallest antelope (suni), dolphins, the best birdwatching (a Pels fishing owl and a Palmnut vulture) the best fishing, the best diving, untouched coral reefs, untouched culture, pristine nature and the list does not end here... What are you waiting for?
In December we were extraordinarily lucky while we were out canoeing with a Belgian guest on the river. The Siyadla river flows into the fourth and last of the Kosi lakes, furthest away from the mouth. It is a little Amazon. Here you will find the giant raffia (raphia) palms, loved by the Palmnut vultures, and you can hike for hours under a canopy forest.
We were canoeing early afternoon on a cloudy day when suddenly we came round a bend and looked up to see a Pels Fishing owl in a low branch five metres away from us. This was our first eyeful of this magnificent and elusive bird and naturally we made a big commotion and I had to back paddle so that we do not glide into the shore just below the owl.
The owl was not that startled but we were too close for comfort and it flew up and to the top of the tree behind us. Suddenly we heard a swoosh sound above our heads from a Palm Nut Vulture who promptly knocked the Pels Fishing owl off the top of the tree. After a scuffle the owl disappeared into the undergrowth and that was the last we saw of it.
That is nature for you – both spectacular and capricious. Our guest did not know how special this sighting is but she just marvelled at our exclamations. I believe we will never see anything like this again but I am waiting for the next spectacular wonder to reveal itself.
Wil and Belle
What to do in Kosi Bay
Date posted: 2012-05-14
There is a big variety of things to do in Kosi Bay.
hiking | diving | turtles | whale watching | birding | tembe elephants | lakes | fishkraals | fishing | raffia palms | canoe |
The different names for Kosi Bay is:
- Maputaland and Tembe Thongaland is the traditional name (after the king Mabhudu who reigned from Maputo to Kosi Bay).
- Kosi Bay, Kosi Mouth, Kosi Lakes is the popular tourism destination names.
- Isimangaliso and Elephant Coast is the marketing initiative names.
- Manguzi is the small town community name which falls in the Kwangwanase district in the Umhlabayalingana Municipality.