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bruno

West coast of Madagascar

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bruno

Hello,, I left the cold of the capital to go west. beautiful trip on horrible roads.

This first pic is taken only 220 km from Antananarivo, but the temperature is 12°C higher, here it is summer, and there, winter. The river is called Tsiribihina, and goes through the tsingy of Bemarah where I will take you. Hope you enjoy the drive.

pont.jpg

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bruno

I will show you all at once, the six varieties of palms, in order of appearance as we proceeded towards the west and to the coast, finishing in the Isalo mountains.

First ones seen were dypsis madagascariensis, an "island" of them surrounded by totally burnt hills.

dypmada.jpg

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bruno

dypmada2.jpg

Then there were tens of thousands of bismarckia nobilis as we were following the tsiribihina river

bism.jpg

bismarckia.jpg

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bruno

A few borassus also, most of them in not so good shape. With typical belly.

bora.jpg

boras.jpg

borass.jpg

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bruno

Millions of hyphaenae coriacea, really millions, some nice big ones but most have been suffering repeated fires and bad treatments.

The last palm will be posted later.

After that palm pic we start landscapes if you don't mind.

hyphaenae.jpg

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fiji jim

WOW !!!!!!

Thanks Bruno.

Keep it coming on man.

Jim

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bruno

I have forgotten that one: phoenix reclinata. Also millions of them in all sorts of habitats: dry wasteland, riverbanks, alongside the roads, very pretty palm, it gives the area where they grow a morroccan look!

phoenix.jpg

The starts our first baobab:

baobab1.jpg

And then, plenty of them, even among coconuts!

baobab2.jpg

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Jeff in St Pete

Beautiful photos Bruno. Please post more!

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ariscott

Gorgeous boababs... Bruno. Yes, please post more..

Regards, Ari :)

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Gbarce

THis is shaping to be a pretty exciting thread!!

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Gtlevine

Love it Bruno, my favorite place in the world, Madagascar. Keep those photos coming, never enough.

Gary

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BS Man about Palms

Another fan here. Thanks in advance Bruno!

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Kim

For-mi-dable! Never get enough of Madagascar. Thanks, Bruno!

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bruno

I'm glad some of you will come along!

Hello Kim and Gary, you would have loved the adventure.

Here is a souvenir left by the chinese workers who rebuilt the road we are on and had been abandonned for the last 50 years

pagode.jpg

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bruno

Typical house of this area. Not too big, not too small like further west. Built out of earth and straw, which makes the temperature inside bearable. It is the hottest area in Madagascar.

casemorond.jpg

Once we reach the city of Morondava, it is desolation. The last 20km were tarmac 50 years ago. Today it is broken tarmac, It took us one and a half hour to drive those 20km!!!! A "has been" city. So sad. And the sea is taking the beach away, which takes houses away. You can see the work of time.

morondava.jpg

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bruno

Fortunately, we had found a very pretty hotel facing east, turning its back to the sea, with an arm of water coming inland and used as harbour. Here is "goelette" built locally, from plans left by the french britanny builders 100 years ago. You will later see the construction site.

boutre.jpg

The hotel is built above the mangrove, very pretty and very many mosquitoes in summer, ot many when we were there. We had to put on mosquitoe spray if we wanted to have a quiet dinner.

hotmor.jpg

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bruno

After that small city, our direction is north, towards the tsingy. Two days to get there and plenty of baobabs on the way. A lot of Adamsonia grandidieri, a few A.ZA, A.FONY, but don't ask me which are which! We have tried to name them from the description, it was impossible. We needed the flower and the fruit, which were not there!

So here are a few baobabs

bao1.jpg

bao2.jpg

The famous "baobab avenue" showed all over the world.

bao3.jpg

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bruno

Baobab avenue with the sun in the back.

bao5.jpg

bao4.jpg

A few mile after the "avenue" we fell upon this perfectly round pond, full of superb waterlillies.

bao4.jpg

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bruno

Sorry I put the wrong pic.

Here it is:

bao6.jpg

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markpeters77

Just WOW!!! I love palms and I adore baobabs, nature can look so unnatural! Surprised to see just the green form of Bizzie, is it more normal in the wild but less cultivated? Nice to see so many younger ones growing with the adults as well given the terrain looks quite agricultural. Stunning photos, thanks! :)

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bruno

Sorry, but I fell in love with that pond! the contrast between that huge tree and the water and those flowers was "my cup of tea"...

mare2.jpg

mare.jpg

Closer to the flowers

mare4.jpg

And a close up

mare3.jpg

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ariscott

That looks very similar to our native water lily... I have to find a pic for you... Very pretty indeed.

Regards, Ari :)

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amazondk

Thanks for the pictures of the trip Bruno. That looks like a great outing. What is the rainfall in the areas where the Bismarkias are native to?

dk

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BS Man about Palms

I'm SWOONING!!!!...

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Gtlevine

I'm glad some of you will come along!

Hello Kim and Gary, you would have loved the adventure.

Here is a souvenir left by the chinese workers who rebuilt the road we are on and had been abandonned for the last 50 years

pagode.jpg

Who's that furry guy on the right of the photo????? Still traveling with dad, what a life.

Gary

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bruno

My dad went back to the stars five years ago. This is a friend of mine, 71 years old. The driver on his left. There was also the younger brother of that friend who is my age: 62. All grand pa's...life goes on.

DK: the west coast is very dry. You can see that from the pictures.Seven to eight months without rain just like the capital, then a rainy season with 140 /180mm of rain. But most of those bismarckias grow not too far from the river .

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BS Man about Palms

I was told today it takes 200 years for the Baobobs to reach that size....

True?:blink:

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aussiearoids

Thanks very much for the superb photos Bruno .

I have a few Baobab seedlings to put out , might be tricky with all my rainfall.

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amazondk

Thanks Bruno,

I was curious because I have some bismarkias planted at our country place. The soil in the part of the lot that they are planted is sandy and as the area has been used for many years, that is cleared, burned, planted and then the same cylce it is very poor. The bismarkias I have planted have done very well. Of course I do fertilize them. But, during the dry season which is now they seem to do well. Our dry season lasts about 5 months, but even them we average from 50 to 100 mm of rain a month. We get from 2500 to 3000 mm of rain per year which is a lot more than they area were. And, the sun is brutal when it is not raining. They seem to love the heat. So, I figured it must be hot where they come from.

dk

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Kim
:rolleyes: I think Gary was referring to your dog, Fotsy (sp?) travelling with dad (you). Does he still run off chasing rabbits? :)

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Cindy Adair

Wonderful photos!!! My 3 baobabs are each less than 1 foot tall. Maybe my great great great, etc. grandchildren will get to see them at a respectable size. Please continue to share your lovely photos.

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Gtlevine

My dad went back to the stars five years ago. This is a friend of mine, 71 years old. The driver on his left. There was also the younger brother of that friend who is my age: 62. All grand pa's...life goes on.

DK: the west coast is very dry. You can see that from the pictures.Seven to eight months without rain just like the capital, then a rainy season with 140 /180mm of rain. But most of those bismarckias grow not too far from the river .

Come on Bruno! Even Kim remembered Footsy, he was my favorite travel companion. I can see he is still out on the trail living the good life. How old is he now? he has got to be in great shape trekking around the island with you. How many times did you yell out Merde' on this trip? that still cracks me up. That drive up to that mountain with Kelly and Andrew was absolutely the worse road of all times.

Gary

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bruno

Oh mer.....

sorry , you were talking about Fotsy!!!!!

He is 9 years old and was very pleasant all the way.

Escaped death at our last hotel near Fianarantsoa, three dogs did not like him on their grounds.

He was ok, not hurt...

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bgl

Bruno,

What an amazing trip and spectacular photography! I love the sight of all those thousands of Bismarckias! Absolutely incredible! And all those baobab trees, what a sight that must be! Always enjoy your posts and your photos! Thanks! :)

Bo-Göran

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sick1166

wow very nice baobobs

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bruno

Let's move on!

One and a half hour after the baobabs avenue, we reached Kirindy forest, a small nature reserve. Most of it deciduous forest in dry land. You saw our latest baobabs were not too far from the water.

Here is the only "black" baobab!

baobabnoir.jpg

In that forest what we enjoyed most were that colony of lemurs walking on the path just a few meters in front of us. it was son funny. I have a 15 second movie of them but don't know if I can put it here?

babafileindienne.jpg

babaarbre.jpg

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BeerPlant

What pictures!! I really like the last one..

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bruno

Another pic of a lemur. They are not tamed because not fed, but are used to see humans on their territory.

babakoto.jpg

If you have seen the movie "Madagascar" there is a "fosa" the local feline. It is not very pretty. This one was in the camp we slept at, not tamed either but smelled a chicken being killed for our dinner! two of them arrived within minutes.

fosa.jpg

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bruno

It was so cold there! It must have been around 6°C that night and we had a small blanket.

Happy to leave the next morning.

On the way to Belo sur Tsiribihina, and the spectacular "tsingy".

A few mile up river there are plenty of crocs, but nearly none where people live.

The ferry.

bac.jpg

Our first contact with the tsingy,on the river "manambolo" . full of crocs also, upriver; it took us ten hours

to go 120 km... horrible roads I told you!

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bruno

this the pic of "first contact with the tsingy

bekopaka.jpg

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