Jumbo update 8 March 2013


It looks as if the rainy season is finally starting to tail off and we will soon be able to get back onto brick making for our barn. The sourcing of the blue gum poles that I need for the roof structure and for the uprights to fix the roof onto is proving to be a major battle. I have contacted every one that I can think of and still have a couple of possibilities but nothing concrete yet, I tend to be rather an impatient person who, once a project has started, wants to get it completed as soon as possible so am a bit frustrated but I am sure that the solution is out there I just need to learn some patience.


It has been fairly quiet on the animal front apart from one of my mares Saltbush getting herself tangled up in the fence whilst trying to get to the stallion. Silly girl managed to skin her leg from the hock to the fetlock which must have been extremely painful. I am convinced that horses are the ultimate experts at hurting themselves on anything that might possibly do the job. Luckily we got to Saltbush just after she had damaged her leg and managed to clean it and treat it before it could get infected and 2 weeks on she has no sign of infection and the wound is healing nicely. Thank goodness for my vet friend Catherine Wood who was in Malawi a few years ago and who taught me about the healing powers of honey which is fantastic for wounds like these and Saltbush is very good at standing still for me to dress her wound and she doesn’t try to remove her bandages which does make life a lot easier.


Rainer Krantz rescued a baby weaver bird in Mauritius a couple of days ago and we have been skyping on the correct care for it. His son Russell is “chief carer” which is great. I just love to hear of kids who are developing an interest in helping our wildlife, really gives me hope for the future.


We had a robbery last week and amongst the stolen items was my new laptop that Craig gave me for my birthday which was really annoying. I have just realized that the novel that I had started writing was on that computer and like an idiot I did not back up. I did luckily print out a hard copy of what I have written so far so at least I can retype it but it is 10,000 words so guess what I will be doing over the next few evenings! We are very fortunate in Malawi in that crime is seldom violent but with the huge inflation that we are experiencing due to massive devaluations of our local currency theft is becoming more and more or a problem as people get more and more desperate and of course the wildlife is at even more risk than normal as the temptation to poach either for food or to sell the more valuable products such as ivory increases dramatically as people get more desperate. We only have another month or so before people are able to harvest their crops and start to sell them so I am optimistic about the second half of the year. I am trying to find a game capture course to attend so that I am better equipped to dart animals that have been caught in snares and require treatment as I believe this is going to become more and more of an issue, nothing available in Malawi but I am sure I will find a suitable course within the region.