Trip report to Cameroon and the Central African Republic

Trip report to CAR and Cameroon

Here is my trip report from Cameroon and the Central African Republic. Really, mostly the CAR, but a few sepcies on the way to/from Yaounde. We ended up going just Luc and I, and it was a great little group 🙂

As always, I did not spare any information about the animals, my experience, and my thoughts – completed with my personal touch and the occasional profanity (You’re welcome). So it’s pretty long, but I think also informative.

I don’t even know what my highlights are from this trip…. there were so many! What an amazing place with such a diversity of wildlife. Only one word can describe this experience and that’s “Wow”.


  • Vladimir Dinets

    Pretty much the only positive change I noticed in Cameroon since my previous visit (in 2009) was that bribes were no longer demanded at checkpoints.
    Dry season in Central Africa is almost never 100% dry: there are localized thunderstorms on most nights. But what you got seems a bit unusual.
    It’s really interesting that you saw a gerbil. Could you describe it? Was it the size of a small rat or a large mouse? What color was it? There are only two possibilities, so we should be able to figure out which one it was.
    Also, that really tiny mouse seen very high in the canopy: was it smaller than the wood mouse you saw? Did you see any details at all, such as eye ring, tail length, belly color, ear size? In this case there are only three possibilities.

  • tomeslice

    Hey Vladimir!
    Like I said, they were less pleasant on the way back from Libongo to Yaounde, and at one point our drivers even had to pay a bribe..
    Christian also said that once every 2-3 years, the dry season is also pretty rainy.. so I guess we just hit one of those years, hence no bongos in the bai. But they still see them on occasion. I wonder how sightings have been since the beginning of April, since now is approaching the supposed “prime” time for viewing them.

    About the gerbil – yeah, you know, it just looked like a gerbil crossing the road, pretty fast. It looked a little rounder than a mouse, and not very mousey, but I might be wrong. I didn’t catch too much detail, but I would say it was dark grayish.

    And the mouse in the canopy… it looked “tiny” to me, but you know how it is when you walk at night, looking at the canopy 20-30 meters away, with a powerful beam that puts everything in the light out of perspective.. Plus I was holding the light and Luc was looking through his binoculars. I don’t remember if I had him point the light at it and I look through the binoculars too. I do remember that it didn’t move much despite the light being on it – like the rest of the mice and rats we saw, and unlike any of the galagos or civets… so I know it was a mouse/rat but honestly I couldn’t see any detail, and that was also the night I had no batteries in my camera, so I don’t even have a shitty picture of it like I have of some of the other species. 🙁

    • Vladimir Dinets

      There are two gerbils that occur N of Dzanga Sangha. None has been recorded there, but they might enter the forest zone along roads. Gerbilliscus kempi is the size of a rat, dark-brown with black tail tuft. Taterillus congicus is the size of a large mouse, dark-sandy with pail tail tuft. If there was no tail tuft, it probably wasn’t a gerbil.

Leave a Reply