Baobab skins get a coat of chain mail; Elephants get something else to eat…..

I am always tickled by the look-alike skins of baobabs and elephants…from baobab trunk…

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to elephant trunk…

elephant musings and water, acrylic on loose canvas, A2 lo res.jpg

Elephant Musings and water
Acrylic on loose canvas

and the wrinkled limbs such as this foreleg…

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and this tiny little leg disappearing into the baobab trunk below…has that baby really just climbed into the fork of this giant baobab!?

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Baobabs endlessly fascinate me, each one as distinctive as the elephant characters we watch daily….subjects of many of my paintings…such as “Baobab Beauty”, acrylic on loose canvas, 90 X 90 cm:

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 Baobab Beauty, acrylic on loose canvas, 90 X 90 cm

Baobabs provide total environments for birds, bats, insects, snails, bees and humans, a cornucopia of shade, shelter and sustenance….

Baobab powder is just one of the products that we love eating, (I love it on muesli with yoghurt and honey…)


…as long as it is sustainably harvested, as by our Changana mahenye community…

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Elephants and baobabs are so alike, but the sad fact is that elephants also eat baobabs voraciously at certain times of the year!

Best way to protect a two-thousand year old baobab skin from an elephant is to give it a snug corset of chain mail, such as this being wrapped around our Gonarezhou baobab whom I have named “Mr Steadfast”…..

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but unlike ancient medieval armour, this mesh link fence is gentle and unobtrusive, seen only at close range…

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We are lucky to have the help of wonderful donors to the baobab fund managed by the Gonarezhou Conservation Trust, (GCT)…donors such as Chicago-born Barbara Kipper, lover of wilderness, art, travel, and all things African, (especially baobabs and baobab powder!) whose help has resulted in Mr Steadfast Baobab getting his corset of chain mail…

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Leader of the baobab protection team, Bvekenya is a man with history...

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he is the grandson of the legendary “Bvekenya”- Cecil Barnard, ivory hunter who roamed these parts and would have sheltered under these very thousand year old trees…

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So, one more baobab of more than 50 protected baobabs so far is done and dusted in Gonarezhou….thank you Barbara!

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But of course the elephants will continue eating……..

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and eating…..

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and EATING!…..

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These gentle giants need more than 100 kg of food daily…

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and that’s a whole new story….IMG_4034 lo res.jpg



About wineandwilddogs

Lin Barrie The Save Valley Conservancy stretches along the upper reaches of the great Save River in the south east of Zimbabwe. The Gonarezhou National Park laps against the southern banks of the Save River and between these two nestles the Malilangwe Wildlife Reserve. These three celebrated wildlife areas form part of the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area, (GLTFCA)- a unique wilderness jewel which is home to the “Big Five” (endangered Black and White rhinos, elephants, buffalo, lion, leopard) and the ”Little Six” (Klipspringer, Suni, Duiker, Steenbok, Sharpe's Grysbok and Oribi). Endangered African wild dogs, Cheetah, Brown hyena, Bat-eared foxes and a host of special birds and plants contribute to the immense variety of this ecosystem. Communities around the GLTFCA contribute to innovative partnerships with National Parks and the private sector, forming a sound base on which to manage social, economic and environmental issues. This is home to artist and writer Lin Barrie and her life partner, conservationist Clive Stockil. Expressing her hopes, fears and love for this special ecosystem with oil paints on canvas, Lin Barrie believes that the essence of a landscape, person or animal, can only truly be captured by direct observation. Lin Barrie states: “Through my art, and my writing, I feel an intimate connection with the natural world, and from my extensive field sketches of wild animals, people and landscapes, I create larger works on canvas. Lin's work is in various public and private collections in South Africa, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Australia, England, Canada, Sweden and the United States of America. She is represented by galleries in South Africa, Zimbabwe, England, Kenya and Florida, USA.
This entry was posted in adventure travel, Africa, African flora, African Safari, african wildlife, animal rights, art, baobab, beauty, bees, bio diversity, birding, bush camps, Chilo Gorge Safari Lodge, citizen science, conservation, conservation education, conservation news, cooking, culture, eco-tourism, edible plant, elephants, endangered species, flowers, food, food culture, Frankfurt Zoological Society, giant African snail, Gonarezhou Conservation Trust, gonarezhou national park, great limpopo transfrontier conservation Area, Honey gatherers, insects, landscape, lowveld, organic slow food, Shangaana people, travel, Uncategorized, wilderness, zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Parks and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Baobab skins get a coat of chain mail; Elephants get something else to eat…..

  1. Benson Siyawareva says:

    nicely done. Benson Siyawareva

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