Asilia Africa News

Meet the safari guides and fundis and other news….

Every year there is an application process as Asilia look to widen their pool of guides within the company. Hundreds of applications are received from both internal and external candidates, all looking to join the Asilia guiding team. An initial interview process and assessment then whittles down the pool to identify those applicants that meet the initial qualifying criteria. Some may be entirely new to Asilia, while others might be working as staff in the camps and are looking to grow their opportunities. The very top guides become known as ‘fundis’ which in Swahili means an expert, specialist, and craftsman. You can get lost in their unforgettable stories, feel closer to the wildlife they know so well and discover the narrative of the land in East Africa as you adventure together.

With the Great Migration currently passing through the Northern Serengeti, all eyes are on the vast herds in search of fresh grass to graze. However, Kenya and Tanzania are also proudly home to some rare and sometimes elusive animals, which make them more sought after to spot. The guides listed some of their favourite elusive African safari animals to add to your African checklist.

The Aardvark- a nocturnal being and you are most likely to spot one while you’re out on a night drive, especially during the wetter months of the year when there are lots of grubs and insects from them to feast on.

The Pangolin, sadly known as the world’s most trafficked mammal, members of the pangoli species are either listed as endangered or vulnerable. There are eight species in the world, four of which are found on the African continent and four species which are found in Asia. Although classified as nocturnal, pangolin is often spotted in the early morning and late afternoon, especially within the open grassland surrounding Namiri Plains.

The Porcupine -this prickly animal is common but rarely seen during the day, although lost quills are often found during walking safaris when greater attention is paid to what lies on the ground before you. A night game drive from Naboisho Camp provides a good opportunity to encounter this spiky rodent.

The Serval- frequently mistaken for a cheetah or genet, this African wildcat has a slim body, with long legs and the biggest ears in the world of cats. The Serval is generally found in areas close to the water and prefers the busy plains with tall grass so that they can easily hide and sneak up on their prey. The grassy landscape around Namiri Plains provides the perfect habitat for serval where black melanistic serval have also been spotted.

The Wild Dog – these are native to sub-Saharan Africa and, are classified as endangered, they face threats such as habitat loss due to overpopulation by humans. Nyerere National Park holds one of the largest populations of wild dog in Africa, with Roho ya Selous offering the perfect base from which to explore.

With so much biodiversity across different regions of East Africa, it becomes impossible to compile a complete checklist for a single safari. However, this gives you the perfect excuse to return time and time again in search of your most sought-after African safari animals.