Filed Under (Benin wildlife, General) by Rob on 29-05-2006

Yes, the rain is coming down in Cotonou in bucket-loads! Great fun driving through all the puddles (just be careful not to splash anyone!!!)

The rain also means the temperature cools down a bit, so now it gets down to as cool as 24 degrees C (yes…I know… that’s a heatwave in Britain, but – hey – it’s all relative okay?!?) In March (probably the hottest month) it barely got below 30 degrees C, even at night – and that’s just too sticky for words! Here are the average temperatures for each month of the year, in case you’re interested!

And here’s a cool bar chart, which shows average temperatures and rainfall:

From this one, it looks like we’re due for a whole lot more of the wet stuff next month!!!

Caught in the rain without a brolly
(NB for Americans reading this, that means ‘umbrella’!)

Last Thursday, we had the day off, as it was Ascension Day. So, we decided to go for a walk in the forest. Now, there aren’t that many accessible forests nearby, but the Niaouli Research Centre near Allada is about 1 hour 20mins drive north of Cotonou. Here’s some info (in French – sorry if you don’t speak the lingo, but there are nice pictures!)

Great place for a walk and some interesting creatures. Seeing as we like moths now, here’s one we saw there (no prizes for identifying this one, Steve!)

Niaouli moth 1.jpg

So, we set off on our walk into the beautiful forest, stopping to look at a spider and some other bugs on the way.

Looking at bugs.jpg

A bit further on, we sat down in a clearing for our picnic of French bread, Pringles and bananas! Just then, the heavens opened and we were well and truly showered upon! We tried to shelter, but the trees are not that thick, so we still got soaked. In the end, we decided to just run for it (seeing as you can’t get any more wet than totally saturated!)

Eventually, we found the viewpoint and were able to shelter under there (and wring out our clothes – there was nobody about!) Here’s the old viewpoint, taken from the top of the newer one. Great views over the vast canopy of green:

Forest viewpoint.jpg

So, the moral of the story is: take waterproofs with you if you go out for a walk during rainy season! Here are our three near the end of the walk (looking more like drowned rats!)

Drowned rats!.jpg

Other News…

Our colds and coughs have all but cleared up (it was Rob’s first cold in two years, which is good, considering he used to have about 3 a year in the UK).

At school, it’s International Day soon and the classes are busy learning international songs for the presentation. The school Samba Band is sure to be taking part, but we’re also doing songs in Spanish, Italian, German and (hopefully) a few national anthems. Last week, Rob’s class were trying to learn the Indian National Anthem, which begins:
“Jana gana mana adhinayaka jaya he…”

Tricky stuff, but fun trying!


Rob is planning to record another local choir soon and start working with yet another. The cassettes of the Aja choir have now been duplicated and sent to the village, so let’s hope that makes a big difference in their lives.

Summer Party is now on 12th August at our house in Ampthill, so we hope you can come.

Thanks for visiting!

Please leave a comment if you have time.

Rob et al

3 Comments posted on "Rainy Season is here big time!"
Yaël, Thalia and Noël on May 30th, 2006 at 12:39 pm #

Well, it’s also rainning a lot in Colombo. The monsoon has started heavily. Nethertheless, we keep walking to the Viharamahadevi Parc as soon as we can. Thalia is in holliday, Christine is in France… Big kisses fron Asia.

Rob on May 30th, 2006 at 2:50 pm #

Good to hear from you – we loved the photos you sent us too!

Cascata on December 15th, 2007 at 4:26 am #

30 degrees?! I’m visiting Benin from Jan to May, and I’m from Montreal, Canada!
Our average temperature for each month looks like this:
and our percipitation is pretty stable at around 80 – 90 mm , which means that we are occasionally gifted with a foot or more of snow.
Needless to say, I am a bit concerned about the heat , but preparing myself mentally.