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Bush Telegraph Newsletter

December 2013


Welcome to our final Bush Telegraph Newsletter for 2013, thank you for your continued support and wishing you peace and happiness for this festive season.


If any of you are considering a Kenya safari during 2014, then we recommend The Safari Store (www.thesafaristore.co.uk) as your outfitters for clothing, luggage and accessories, in fact everything you would want to complete your safari requirements. Please contact us for your special promo code to qualify for a 10% discount off many of their products.


Many clients combine a few days at the beach following their safari, with most opting for one of the fabulous resorts on the Kenya coast. However, with three scheduled flights a week from Nairobi to the Seychelles and Mauritius, why not incorporate one of these paradise locations into you itinerary?


This month we feature your very own exclusive island in the Seychelles, Round Island. While this fabulous destination maybe out of reach for many of us, it demonstrates just what is available in this tropical paradise. 


Scotts at Governors Camp 


For the past twenty years we have based ourselves at Governor's Camp - the first tented camp to establish itself in the Masai Mara in 1972. I lived at Mara River Camp from 1977 to 1982, a fifteen-minute-drive beyond the northern boundary of the Reserve. Governor's was a much more sophisticated operation than ours and as a fledgling safari guide I often found myself knocking on the door for help. Nancy and Robin Camm who managed the camp with an easy mix of charm and character took me under their wing and always endeavoured to rustle up some eggs or bread - or fuel - whenever we ran short and I came begging. It was typical of the safari ethos that pays dividends to this day: you never know when you may need help in the bush so be kind to your neighbours!


Over the years Governor's have spread their wings, and not just in the Mara where they operate four camps: Governors, Little Governor's, the upmarket Il Moran and a seasonal camp called Private Camp that is ideal for families and groups of up to sixteen people.


All of the camps are ideally situated, tucked away in the coolness of the riverine forests bordering the Mara River. Governor's has recently opened Silverback Lodge in Rwanda's Parc National des Volcans for gorilla trekking, and offer a home stay at Lake Naivasha in the Rift Valley at their Loldia House whose enviable reputation for genteel comfort spans the globe. And just a 40 min flight from Governor's is Mfangano Island.


This is the perfect place for a relaxing day out on the Lake or if you really want to spoil yourself you can enjoy a comfortable overnight at Mfangano Island Camp situated on the shores of a secluded bay. Lake Victoria is famous for its giant Nile Perch, so this is your chance to impress your friends by catching your own lunch or dinner. There are plenty of other attractions too: a visit to a traditional fishing village or photographing the magnificent fish eagles for a start! Little Governor's is perhaps our favourite camp. It's relatively small and very personable: 17 tents spread in a semicircle around the edges of a perennial marsh which attracts buffalo, elephants, waterbuck and wart hogs to name just a few - plus numerous species of water birds. It's a paradise, somewhere that you can put your feet up and while-away the hours without moving from the veranda of your tent, scanning the marsh for birds or enjoying a good book. Bliss! What makes all the Governor's camps in the Mara so special is the location. There is simply nowhere Angie and I would rather be than in the vicinity of Musiara Marsh, Rhino Ridge and Paradise Plain. As you drive out of Governors - or Il Moran, Little Governor's or Private Camp for that matter (all four Governor's camps conduct their game drives on the east of the Mara River) - you are in Marsh Pride territory. 



Angie and I have been following this same pride of lions (and their neighbours the Gorge Pride, Ridge Pride, Topi Plains or Naboisoit Pride and Paradise Pride) for over thirty years. So have some of the driver-guides at Governor's Camp who refer to the tree lined water course to the east of the Marsh as Bila Shaka the ancestral birth place of the Marsh Pride. Bila Shaka means 'without fail' in Swahili so certain are the drivers of finding lions somewhere in the vicinity.


Musiara is truly our second home - our house at Governor's overlooks the Mara's rolling plains - and was the location of our latest television series for the BBC: The Truth About Lions. The Marsh is a honeypot for numerous species of animals and birds - and the dry season hunting grounds for the Marsh Pride. If you were thinking of taking a safari to the Mara what more could you ask for? 


New cubs for the Marsh Pride of lions


Exciting news to report, the Marsh Pride of lions continues to go from strength to strength with new cubs in the fold. Lioness Sila has 3 cubs that we estimate to be around 3 - 4 weeks old. With rain around the the ground has become quite slippy and the cubs have been slipping and sliding a bit and Sila has been moving them about, looking for dryer ground for them. The pride continues to occupy territory close to all our camps and we continue to enjoy wonderful regular sightings of all the pride. 


Photos are courtesy of Governors Camp guides Jacob and Governors Il Moran Camp guide Maina Wachira. 



Round Island 
Exclusive Private island in the Seychelles 


Private island retreat in Seychelles is available throughout the year for clients looking for the ultimate in privacy and exclusivity in a true paradise environment. 

  • Enjoy an unforgettable stay on this most private of islands in Seychelles.

  • Offering 9 rooms (max 16-19 persons), 2 boats, all inclusive basis, for the ultimate

    private paradise island experience.

  • This privately owned island is located south east of Praslin, right in the middle of the

    Seychelles Islands archipelago

  • Reached by helicopter from Mahe 15mins to private helicopter pad.

  • Accommodation consisting of 3 ocean view luxury villas and a Safari lodge that

    include a total of 9 rooms to host 16 adults (Max 19).

  • The Island has two swimming pools, private restaurants and bars, private helipad,

    private access beach

  • 360 belvedere sky lounge surrounded by 15 hectares of lush tropical forest and


  • Offered on an "all inclusive" basis the island will provide all services needed to

    enjoy an exclusive stay

  • Team of dedicated professional staff.

  • Ideal for group of friends or a family or even just 2 of you!


  • The island is rented on an exclusive use basis only, based on an all-inclusive format.

  • Island accommodation is maximum of 19 people (client staff and children's included)

  • Including maximum 16 adults (+ 18 years old in age).

  • (Accommodation for additional client staff without en suite private bathrooms can be

    made available upon special request).

  • Prices are per night for the exclusive use of the Island and All-inclusive Including VAT and any other local Government tax: 

€ 10,000.00 from 1 to 4 adults per night

€ 1,300.00 per additional adult (from 18 years old) per night € € Children 0 to 17 years old: Free of charge 

  Minimum booking is for two nights 

The use of the Island and luxury Villa facilities; including 3 ocean view luxury villas and a Safari lodge with en-suite bathrooms that include a total of 9 rooms, 2 swimming pools, 2 private restaurants, 2 bars, a private helipad, a beach, a fully equipped private office centre, a belvedere sky lounge, 15 hectares of lush tropical forest and gardens and a dedicated professional staff.
Breakfasts, lunches, dinners, offering gastronomic French Cuisine or custom prepared to client preferences and tastes, whenever they wish. 


Unlimited premium international "in house selection" of fine champagnes, wines and spirits, mineral waters, non-alcoholic drinks and all natural and flavoured custom prepared beverages. "In house selection "Champagnes, wines and spirits list available upon request.


Massages: If booking is fully confirmed and paid in full a minimum 30 days prior to arrival date, unlimited massages, whenever and wherever on the Island. 1 masseur available for booking including 1 to 6 adults. 2 masseurs available for booking including 7 or more adults. Client may select their masseur, between their choice of either male or female therapists, or both, if request is made minimum 60 days prior to arrival date. If booking is fully confirmed and paid less than 30 days prior to arrival date, then they will make best efforts to provide with massage services, but can't guarantee that service availability.


One Personal assistant/Butler per villa for the entirety of the stay.

Unlimited use of total 2 golf carts for the entire duration of their stay on the island.




Unlimited use of all available motorised and non-motorised island water sports, and all its associated equipment. Water sports  include "Big game" fishing with Round Island own boat (maximum capacity 8 persons), water skiing, sailing, snorkelling and kayaking.


Unlimited boat "day trip" excursions with Round Island boats such as inner-island guided tours, islands exploration, swimming with turtles at nearby Coco Island, picnics at beaches accompanied by our professional bartender and staff, and sunset or moonlight cruises.


Unlimited use of 2 crewed island boats (1st boat with 8 persons capacity / 2nd boat with 5 persons capacity).


Unlimited access to 18 holes golf game on nearby Praslin Island Lémuria Resort with transfer by Island boat. 
Unlimited high speed Internet wifi access throughout the island.


Activities and services are subject to change and prevailing weather conditions without notice. 



Not included in rental prices, but available upon requests are all tobacco products, special high end exclusive wines, champagnes and spirits requests, private yacht rental, airport transfers ( helicopter transfers can be provided at extra cost to/from Mahe), telephone calls, scuba diving, deep sea fishing, and any other special clients requests, providing that requests are submitted latest 30 days prior client arrival, are technically feasible, and which don't infringe on Seychelles laws and regulations in place.  


For more details on how to secure this private island! 

Contact: Mike McInnes mike@safarikenya.eu 







Cheli & Peacock is delighted to announce that Stefano Cheli has been appointed to the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT) Board of Trustees.


Established in 2004, the NRT is a non-profit organisation supporting 26 community wildlife conservancies across northern Kenya and encompassing over 3 million acres of land. Its mission is to develop resilient infrastructure of wildlife management, sec

urity and conflict resolution which transforms people's lives,secures peace and conserves natural resources.The NRT is widely- revered and its success has helped shape new government regulations on establishing, registering and managing community conservancies in Kenya.


Cheli & Peacock over the past

nearly 30 years have worked with communities and have been innovative in identifying and transforming areas with poor conservation track records. Cheli & Peacock's camps - Kitich Campand Joy's Camp already partner with NRT.

The NRT Council of Elders and Board of Trustees identified Stefano as "someone who can make a significant contribution" to their work. The appointment reflects Stefano's "skills, expertise and achievements" in the Namunyak and Nakuprat-Gotu conservancies, in particular, as well as his role as Chairman and Founder of the Mara North Conservancy and position on the Africa Conservation Centre Board of Trustees.


Stefano brings to the role a wealth of experience and a true passion for Kenyan conservation. Across its portfolio of properties, Cheli & Peacock supports a great many local initiatives, ranging from environmental projects with wildlife foundations and conservation charities, to those working with local schools, clinics and sanitation projects.


Commenting on the appointment, Stefano Cheli, Owner of Cheli & Peacock says:

"Since Liz and I first began operating safaris in 1985, responsible tourism, wildlife conservation and the careful preservation of Kenya's unique wilderness have always been our upmost priority. We have worked alongside the NRT for many years and I am delighted to join its Board of Trustees and continue to work closely with local communities to support their development needs."


Lewa & NRT's Security Teams Honoured by Community Elders and the Kenya Police 


The Kenya Police and the highly revered Njuri Njeke elders from Tigania East recently paid Lewa a visit to offer their appreciation for the Conservancy's work in enhancing security in their area. Like many of Lewa's neighbours, the Tigania region has historically been plagued with numerous cases of livestock theft. This is particularly devastating as animal husbandry is one of the community's main source of livelihood.


Today, thanks to the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy and Northern Rangeland Trust's timely intervention, livestock raiding is fast becoming an exercise in futility. Raiders have been arrested and hundreds of stolen cattle, sheep and goats have been recovered and taken back to their owners. Earlier on in January, Lewa's aerial follow-up helped recover a large herd of 205 cattle.


On the 15th of November, 65 cows that had been driven kilometres away from Tigania were successfully returned to their owner.


Last week, Lewa and NRT's armed teams were able to stop raiders who had stolen 13 cows.


The regional chairman of Njuri Njeke Stephen Mucheke explains what this means to his community:


"For years, raiding has been a dangerous and expensive menace to our people.


It was not uncommon for cattle rustlers to bankrupt a farmer in just a few hours. Thanks to Lewa and NRT this has changed. Our stolen livestock is being brought back and raiders are being arrested. Security has greatly improved and we can never be more grateful."


The Kenya Police Force from the area reiterates:


"The two organizations play the biggest role in protecting wildlife in this area. They have also assisted us greatly in fostering peace and reducing crime, especially in recovering stolen livestock in the Northern Grazing Zone that extends from Tigania East to Samburu."




Security as a tool for development and conservation


Improved security for people creates a better environment for the community's economic development. It also translates to safer migratory areas for wildlife and greater collaborative efforts in conservation with the community and local authorities.


During their visit, chairman Stephen Mucheke promised his community's help in anti-poaching.


"The people of Tigania are ready to support conservation in any way possible, including collecting intelligence to weed out poachers. We are ready to act as the first line of defence against instigators of wildlife crimes."