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July 26, 2003

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The southernmost tip of Madagascar, which lies South of the Tropic of Capricorn, is the driest and wildest region. Here you can find all of the national symbols: the lemurs, chameleons, baobabs, and spiny forest.
We walked from the spiny forest to the transitional forest, a 8 kilometer trek, watching birds and lemure spotting along the way. How these animals climb amongst the thorns is a mystery to us.
In addition to exotic animals, Madagascar has cornered the world market on baobab trees - nine species exist here (only one other exists elsewhere and that's found on continental Africa). More strange is the spiny forest, a unique mix of cactus-like baobabs, Alluaudia and Didiera (these trees are too strange for anything but scientific names), and succulents such as tall aloes and several types of Euphorbia.
Don't forget this island's unique bugs and reptiles.