4th Day: Scorpions & a see again
With a rented car including driver Yaessin, we drove in the direction of the city Sfax, 2 hours away, a little in an open terrain to search for scorpions and explore the country. Yaessin did not know what we were looking for, because we could not explain that in French.
The traffic is sometimes extreme and with a native and French speaking driver it is easier.
Fortunately for us, Yaessin came too late and he offered to take longer. We gladly accepted that. Tunisians have a short day at work and are not used to working long hours and that's why we had to hurry - Tunisians retire at the age of 55.
On the way you can see a lot of nature, the way of life of the people, olive groves and cactus everywhere.
Searching for scorpions
In Sfax we made a short stop to have a snack. We continued the journey east of Sfax, into open terrain of Ktetna.
Due to our own initiative, we did not find anything and therefore we asked a local family who had a house on the roadside for advice.
The mother greeted us cautiously but gently and called her husband. We greeted us with a handshake, found that we could not communicate and then we showed a scorpion picture.
So far, Yaessin was not privy to it.
We went to the car together, he greeted the driver and then they spoke only French, the whole time...as if they have always known each other. That was admirable.
Now Yaessin knew and looked a bit puzzled, but said nothing. We drove a few minutes further into the area, where he had probably found scorpions more often. But we only found a Gecko.
We decided to continue together and drove to a village. The older son drove fast ahead with the moped. In the village there was already his son with the moped as well as a few locals. The father called something out the window and one of the locals climbed to the son on the moped.
So...it starts. There we found in an area of 20m x 20m some scorpions:
Androctonus australis, (hector) / Scorpio sp. / Buthus sp.
Habitat of Androctonus australis, (hector)
So after this first find all was motivated...also Yaessin.
Habitat of Scorpio sp.
Buthus sp. were all under stones or under the garbage.
After an hour we wanted to go to another place to find other species. The streets were getting bumpier and without our knowledge we were suddenly with the niece of the father.
A see again
Despite the family's relatively short distance, it seemed they had not seen each other for years. The reunion and the joy was clearly felt. After a short refreshment we went on to the vicinity of a cemetery...this time with a shovel.
Here we found extremely deep buried Scorpio sp. and some Buthus sp.
Unfortunately, we did not find any other Androctonus spp. in the area, so we stopped the search there, said warmly goodbye with some money for support, and continued our search at the next route point, with Yaessin, west of Sfax. Yaessin needed an Energydrink on the way...
Hôtel de ville de Sfax
On a hill we found only Buthus sp. and a few kilometers further on a field where isolated stones lay too.
It was getting dark and we had still 2 hours to drive back. Yaessin had sleepy eyes and had to stop at the gas station, drinking a coffee and one more energy drink. It was hard for him...
Arrived at the hotel we said warmly goodbye to Yaessin and gave a generous tip.
The little wonder that has really hard ways behind.