This is my firs trip tp the lake! it is impressive! It was fairly windy (15 mph) so there were little waves and it wasnt too clear, good for sailing but ahh no sailboard. Next weekend we are staying 4 days! Look for Cape Clear post…
The landscape in Malawi is beautiful; I just love the trees, all sizes and colors, with flowers… and the beautiful Baobab pictured here.
Mlambe is the Malawian vernacular term for the baboab tree. The Mlambe tree is indigenous to Africa and has a rich history and tradition in many societies across the continent.
One of the world’s longest (over 2000 years) living tree species, the Mlambe stands gigantically in the hot and dry savannas and has multiple uses. Every part of the tree has a beneficial use to the people! It does not only support people’s needs, it also supports a wide number of creatures such as insects, birds and small rodents – even larger animals have good stories too to tell! Others have dubbed it a complete ecosystem! The tree is also a traditional symbol of wisdom. Villagers come together to discuss matters affecting their communities including story telling under the Mlambe. Even community leaders preside over conflicts in the shade of this natural village court. Further still, in some societies the tree has been regarded as a deity thereby signifying holiness. The Mlambe is also well known for its resilience as it can stay for long periods under drought and still survive while other plants wilt.
The tree is so dear to Africa so much that in some countries it is a protected species while in others it has been declared a national symbol.
Baobab is the common name of a genus (Adansonia) containing eight species of trees, native to Madagascar (the centre of diversity, with six species), mainland Africa and Australia (one species in each). The mainland African species also occurs on the island of Madagascar, but it is not a native of that country. Other common names include boab, boaboa, bottle tree and monkey bread tree. The species reach heights of between 5â€“25 m (exceptionally 30 m) tall, and up to 7 m (exceptionally 11 m) in trunk diameter. They are noted for storing water inside the swollen trunk, with the capacity to store up to 120,000 litres of water to endure the harsh drought conditions particular to each region . All occur in seasonally arid areas, and are deciduous, shedding their leaves during the dry season. Some are reputed to be many thousands of years old, though as the wood does not produce annual growth rings, this is impossible to verify; few botanists give any credence to these claims of extreme age.
Perhaps you will ask me, “Why are there no other drawing in this book as magnificent and impressive as this drawing of the baobabs?”
The reply is simple. I have tried. But with the others I have not been successful. When I made the drawing of the baobabs I was carried beyond myself by the inspiring force of urgent necessity.
Dedicated to the cause (AKA fanatic)
Needs a little work, but its fairly comfortable. Im enjoying open windows and breezes, and sitting outside with the laptop. Its now the end of the dry season. As the rains come, the scenery will be even nicer – greeener – but its mosquito season… hmm i wonder if there are bats around? certainly not enought to stop worrying about malaria…
The Hotel in Johannesburg (south Africa) was a nice overnight after a 18 hr flight from Atlanta… Then there are some shots on the flight from Joberg to Lilongwe.
Amy went with Mark on a shoot and got this amazing image. More on amygottlieb.net
South Bird Island and Port Aransas
This is fresh water!
Lake Malawi, known locally as Lake Nyasa, is the ninth largest lake in the world and lies between the countries of Malawi on the west and Tanzania and Mozambique on the east. It is 360 miles long and 25 miles wide, with an approximate area of 8,683 sq mi, and reaches depths of 2,300 feet. The lake has a visibility of up to 70 feet.
Lake Malawi contains a greater variety of indigenous species of Cichlid fishes than any other lake in the world. World Wildlife Fund researchers have identified over 500 species to date that are not found anywhere else in the world. That is more than all of the freshwater species found in all the waters of both Europe and North America. The Cichlids of Lake Malawi, perhaps even more so than the Cichlids from the other two rift lakes, are brightly colored and patterned. For this reason, they have been a big hit with aquarists all over the world.
Among these popular Cichlids are the Mbuna and the Haps.
The â€œMbunaâ€ (i.e., rock-dwelling fish) are a large group of Cichlids that live among large piles of rocks along the shoreline. They are usually seen in large groups, but are by no means a schooling fish. In some areas of Lake Malawi, 20 fish per square meter is not uncommon. Both sexes of the more than 100 species of Mbuna are unusually colorful, whereas typically, only males have color. They are very colorful with bright patterns of horizontal stripes or vertical bars. Mbuna are smaller and tend to have flat faces, which enables them to better scrape algae from rocks. These consist mostly of, but not limited to, the genera Pseudotropheus, Labidochromis, Mealnochromis, Labeotropheus and Metriaclima.
Haps, for want of a better name, are basically a non-Mbuna flock that are informally called â€œHapsâ€ because many of these fish once belonged to the broad genus Haplochromis Hilgendorf.
Most Haps are piscivores, unlike the vegetarian Mbuna. There are some exceptions to this generalization, however, but these do well on a piscovore’s diet nonetheless. Haps are aggressive, but not as aggressive as the vegetarian Mbuna. They have long, slender, almost torpedo-like bodies, and cruise the open water. Most of these fish are silver or gray when small, and the males become very brightly colored as they mature. Females typically remain without color. For more information on Haps and Mbuna, see Haps Vs. Mbuna.
The water chemistry in Lake Malawi is very similar to that of Lake Victoria. For this reason, many species from these two lakes can be housed together. Lake Malawi’s pH ranges from 7.8 to 8.6, with a total hardness of 4.0-6.0 dH. The reason for the variation is caused by the level of Carbon Dioxide dissolved in the water. In areas with turbulent water, where the water is better aerated, the pH is higher, while in calm bays, the level of dissolved Carbon Dioxide is higher; consequently, the pH is lower there. Surface temperature ranges from 76 to 85 degrees, while the temperature at lower levels of the lake remain at a constant 70 degrees. Carbonate hardness ranges from 6.0 to 8.0.
About one third of the coast is rocky, which is home to the mbunas. The remaining shoreline is characterized by sandy beaches and bottoms. This is where most of the open-water Haps and peacocks dwell. A few Cichlid species inhabit the muddy and weed-strewn bottom where larger rivers flow into the lake. The shores of the lake are generally sandy, and the resort areas are generally bilharzias free. Lake Malawi is unusual in that it does not have tides or currents.
They gather at watering holes during the sunset.
Anne, Emily, Kate and my beautiful wife Amy.
Cape Mac Lodge, Cape Mac Clear/Monkey Bay, Malawi.