A friend in the garden for 2017…

January sunrise behind the Chimanimani Mountains

January sunrise behind the Chimanimani Mountains

Here at Frog & Fern swallows soar in low cloud and our resident Bush shrike whistles “ooooooooo-up” among  splendid Msasa trees. Our rains have come.

Life giving rains at Frog & Fern Cottages, Chimanimani.

Mzanje fruit lie thick and sweet among the leaves feeding chongololos, birds, butterflies, people and horses. Paradise Flycatchers dominate the garden with delightful flight and frenzied, cheering song.

Summer is here when we hear the trilling of our returning Paradise Flycatchers.

And today quietly stalking in lower layers of bush is my most magical creature, the Chameleon. From early childhood I loved him as much as I loved frogs. This little dinosaur who changes his tone and looks all around with swiveling eyes has to remain vigilant every moment for the Bush Shrike will make a meal of him and the Raven will scoop him up for breakfast. I heard a man yell in fright last evening…he was staring through his binoculars  when he felt a rather startling sensation on his foot! A snake? Oh no, just a gentle chameleon on the hunt. Our guest laughed in comic relief –   to  think that he  caught such a “SKRIK” from this lowly, steady little chap making quiet progress across his toes.

Creature of myth and joy.

Special feet, special tongue, special skin. A magical creature in every way.

My heart sings when I see one of these creatures – it means he has survived the terrible fire season, he has survived the drought, loss of habitat on a massive scale and endless numbers of humans who persecute him over ignorant superstition. He cannot run, he can but blend as best he can…he is the master of blending. This patient, fabulous creature of a green earth lives in my garden…how very blessed I am.

Flap Necked Chameleon spots his prey at Frog & Fern

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