Nature Reserve Mokolodi
The Mokolodi Nature Reserve is not large, but it is in a very convenient place for tourists – just 10 km from the capital of Botswana, the city of Gaborone. The reserve was opened in 1994; It is under the jurisdiction of the Mokolodi Wildlife Fund.
In total, the boundaries of the Mokolodi Reserve cover 30 km², which have space not only for African wildlife, but also a small artificial town of comfort and recreation – hotels and restaurants and excursion bureaus are created for tourists. The nature reserve Mokolodi, first of all, is famous for its population of rather rare white rhinos. Other animals, such as cheetahs, leopards, giraffes, hyenas, zebras and antelopes, porcupines and long-legged animals, are also numerous in the reserve’s fauna. Among others, within the boundaries of Mokolodi, there are also some very special almost tame elephants. They often organize excursions for guests of the park.
White rhinos by themselves are not white at all. It is just that this distorted Boer word wijde (wide, wide-cord) got accustomed in everyday use, which the British associated with their word white (white). In fact, this rhino has a dark, slate-gray color, it is only slightly lighter than that of the black rhino. But the white rhino is the largest member of the family. On average, the mass of this animal reaches 3 tons, body length is 3.6-4 m, height is 1.6-2 m. The White rhino has two horns, the front one is always longer (the record length is 1.58 m), and the back one is completely underdeveloped. The main difference between a white rhino is not even its size, but a wide flat upper lip (in black it is pointed in the form of a proboscis). Such a structure of the upper lip appeared for a white rhinoceros, because it eats most often grassy vegetation, which is convenient to pinch with a flat upper lip and crush with the help of a sharp keratinous lower lip. White rhinos prefer to keep in small groups, only occasionally form large herds of 16-18 individuals. The group is dominated by females caring for their cubs. Living males in a group is permissible if he does not try to mate with females. As a result, only old males live in groups. Females may even show aggression in order to expel an unwanted male from the group.
Males show aggression only to their own kind, i.e. to males. Between them, fierce fights are frequent, often ending in the death of one of the opponents. If a group of white rhinos feels danger, then immediately takes a defensive position – they become heads in a tight circle and leave the cubs inside this circle. Today, the white rhino is considered out of danger of extinction, but its population still needs constant monitoring.
A special program has been developed for tourists in the park, which includes educational excursions, observation of animals from equipped sites and a visit to the Reptile Park, which specializes in snake breeding. The park has a clinic that supports sick or wounded wild animals, as well as an educational center, whose activities are aimed at attracting teenagers from schools and orphanages to the protection and preservation of the state’s environment.
For the convenience of visitors in the reserve there are five comfortable chalets in traditional style for 2-4 people, equipped with a gas stove, a fan and household appliances, as well as five campgrounds for 8 people each. For a fee, guests of the park are offered good food and drinks.
But on this day program in the reserve is not limited. Here you can also visit a number of shops with works of local artisans, get into the botanical garden, take an exclusive walk to the park with lions or to the swimming pool with crocodiles. The evening program in the reserve is also very authentic. Everyone can taste the local cuisine, but at this time his eyes will delight local amateur groups, whose program includes cult dances and ceremonies. The cost of excursions depends on the duration of the trip and the availability of additional services.