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Great animal sightings Wednesday!

Yesterday morning we went out to a different part of the lagoon in the drizzle and didn’t find any manatees, but I did see my first forest elephant! Infact, my first wild elephant ever! It was wonderful, he didn’t seem too disturbed by our presence. After he came out of the bushes I realized he was wearing a radio collar. The big yellow box on his neck is the tag. He was petite compared to the African or Asian elephants I’m used to seeing. I thought he was a juvenile until Pierre told me he was a full grown adult. Tomo told me later that this elephant is part of a study to look at movement patterns that’s being conducted by Steve Blake, an elephant researcher I recently met in Libreville.

We also saw a troop of 40 or so monkeys bounding through the trees. Hard to get a good picture in the rain, and they don’t exactly stay still! I need to look up the species.
And in the afternoon we encountered a Gabon Viper swimming across the lagoon. It was only about a foot long and had the most beautiful color pattern, as you can see. Apparently they have the longest fangs of any snake in the world and their bite can be deadly.
I’d like to say that the picture is blurry for artistic purposes, but its tough shooting from a rocking boat at sunset!

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