Aadje Geertsema

Name ID 183

See also

Pearson, John Hunters of the Plains
Page Number: 040
Extract Date: 5 March 1977

Wild dogs at Nasera

At the entrance to the Angata Kiti there stands a rock the Maasai call Nasera. To the best of anyone's knowledge its overhang has been used by hunter-gatherers for at least 10,000 years.

On 5 March, Aajte ('Inky' for short) Geertsema, a Dutch girl who was working at Ndutu studying Serval cats, took her parents and some friends from Arusha across to the Gols for the day. Quite why she went there at just that time I do not know. But anyway, that afternoon they came across 1 female and 3 male hunting dogs. She recognized them as belonging to the Genghis Pack, so called by Jane and Hugo Van Lawick when studying them a few years previously. They were Marcus, Homer and Jinja, accompanying their breeding female Kali. Inky followed them until they settled into the den where, shortly afterwards, Kali was to give birth to her litter of thirteen pups. Jinja, Inky reported, wore a radio telemetry collar placed there some time ago by the Serengeti Research Institute and long since non-operational. I thought that the presence of this might prove to be a nuisance when filming them - it would hardly look wild or natural - but decided I would face that when it happened.

It was, to say the least of it, a monumental piece of luck. A day earlier or later, even an hour's difference in timing, and in all probability the pack would have denned and had their puppies out there in the wilderness and no one would have had the faintest idea they were there.

Extract ID: 4485

See also

Pearson, John Hunters of the Plains
Page Number: 053
Extract Date: 17 April 1977

I have a 44 gallon drum locked in my store

After about an hour I heard footsteps. It was Inky back from her trailblazing expedition. She sat down and we exchanged news. `You know they have no petrol here?'

`Yes I found that out.' `What are you going to do?'

`Well, I intended to go to Ngorongoro, but Rashid tells me the road is blocked. Since I've only got just enough fuel to get there I suppose the sensible thing to do is sit here for a couple of days until the road dries out a bit and I can be sure I'll get through.'

`Won't that upset your filming?'

`Too right,' I answered with some feeling, `but there's damn-all else I can do.'

Inky looked over her shoulder. Then she leaned forward. `I have a 44 gallon drum locked in my store,' she said, very quietly. `If you swear you'll replace it by next week you can have that.'

The following morning, all arrangements for the replacement of Inky's petrol having been agreed, I set out for camp. There was no point in hurrying. The Range Rover with its load of fuel and food was pretty well weighed down and I picked my way around the potholes and past the worst of the mud as safely as I knew how. As long as I got back in time for the afternoon hunt, that was all that mattered.

In fact, the dogs didn't hunt that evening, but I was so relieved at being back and at having an adequate supply of fuel, when I could so easily have been sitting at Ndutu, that it didn't worry me unduly.

Next morning we were out extra early.

Extract ID: 4495

See also

Hanby, Jeannette & Bygott, David Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Page Number: 84


We wish to thank in particular the Conservators of NCA with whom we have worked over the years: Mr H Fosbrooke, Mr A Mgina, Mr. S.ole Saibull, and Mr J Kayera.


early on our interest in and knowledge about Ngorongoro was greatly enhanced by . . . . George and Lory Frame,


J.ole Kwai and Tepilit ole Saitoti have helped us in our research and also to understand the Maasai people of the area.


Felician Baraza and Sebastian Chuwa, knowledgeable in general and experts on plant life in particular have been extraordinarily tolerant of our questions over the many years that it has taken to answer them!


The first publication of this book (NCA guide) was facilitated by our ever-helpful friends Walter Bgoya, Per and Margaret Kullander, Aadje Geertsema, Deberah Snelson, and Neil and Liz Baker

Extract ID: 95

See also

Darch, Colin (Ed) Tanzania
Extract Author: Geertsema, Aadje
Page Number: 28
Extract Date: 1991 Feb

The servals of Gorigor

Natural History pp52-61

The serval is a medium-sized member of the cat family with a spotted coat, long legs and very large ears, which it uses to locate the soft noises made by prey such as hares, rodents annd small antelope,as well as birds. Serval are rarely seen, as they inhabit the long grasslands, where they supplement their diet with insects, and even fruit and plants. They have a home range of around ten square kilometres, and hunt by stalking their prey with exaggerated care, using their sharp hearing and pouncing at the last minute. The servals thrive in the grasslands and marshes of the Ngorongoro crater.

Extract ID: 263

See also

Künkel, Reinhard African Elephants
Page Number: Introduction
Extract Date: 1998

I want to mention the names of a few people

I want to mention the names of a few people without whose support my new elephant work could not have happened, especially Mr E. Chausi, the conservator of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, who so warmly welcomed us back to this splendid Garden of Eden, as many visitors call the Ngorongoro Crater, after my wife and I had explored life and wildlife on the Australian continent for a year. It had been great fun and we were very tempted to stay.

The people of Ngorongoro and other friends helped us to decide to continue working in Tanzania.In this context I would like to thank Dr Richard Faust, president, and Dr Markus Borner, regional director, of the Frankfurt Zoological Society, who supported us in many ways. Both men are strongly committed to continuing the pioneering conservation work Professor Berhard Grzimek started decades ago, the essence of which is contained in his famous appeal: 'Serengeti shall not die.'

Aadje Geertsema and Margaret and Per Kullander invited us to stay at their Ndutu Safari Lodge on the Serengeti plains. It is a fabulous home from which to explore the surrounding plains and woodlands, the heart of the annual wildebeest migration during the rainy season. Sometimes the elephants move right through nature's endless garden spreading in front of our windows, to our everlasting joy. Thanks to our generous friends.

The people of the Ndutu Safari Lodge not only treat their guests to a special atmosphere, but also keep our cars together (not an easy task!), feed us (Little John's pancakes are the best in the world) and help us with the hundreds of problems everyday life in the bush offers one as challenge. And it is all done with a smile. Thanks to Leonard and Moody, to Little John and Ndelay, Marcelli and Josef, Hamisi and Mirando, Bifa and Augustin. I certainly would love to name them all, but then there would not be enough pages left for the elephants, so these few names have to stand for the great team of Ndutu. Thank you very much.

And thanks to Leonce and Mohamed too, and to Paul and Louise, who joined as managers just in time for the special challenges of a long El Nino season. I think few of the many people who come through on safari realize what an enormous amount of organisation it takes to run a lodge in the middle of nowhere. It is more than a full-time job and requires all the energy, competence and imagination that can be mustered. And still, sometimes humour is all that is left to keep the links together.

Aadje and Margaret, we appreciate your work! It allows us to forget about logistics and face our own specific set of problems. Like finding the elephants. They are big animals. But the forest is even bigger. Whole herds can disappear into the woodlands along the Olduvai Gorge. And do. It is wonderful to be free to look at them. Again our thanks.

Barbie Alien, as always, supported my work and this book, with her inspiring advice, strength and humour, not to mention providing a vital communication link and a home in the last stage of the production of this book.

Many thanks.

Reinhard 'Leo' Kunkel

Ndutu Safari Lodge

Ngorongoro Conservation Area


June 1998

Extract ID: 435