Stripe’s Busy Night in the Bushveld

by Tanja Nayak


Book Details

Meet Stripe, a plucky honey badger, and his mum.


Night falls on the African savannah and you might think that all the animals have gone to sleep? As day gives way to darkness it is time for a number of smaller animals to stir and shine, however. Meet Stripe, a plucky honey badger, and his mum as they go on their nightly search to find honey. Follow their steps and you’ll be surprised to meet many unique nocturnal animals like: “The Secret Seven.” Who are they? You’ll have to read Stripe’s story to find out...

"Stripe's Busy Night in the Bushveld" is a beautifully illustrated CHILDREN'S BOOK that not only has a story, but also includes full-colour photographs of nocturnal animals and well-researched FACTUAL information. The whimsical illustrations by the talented artist, Nate Myers really give the story flair and faithfully bring the bushveld and nocturnal animals the anthropomorphic protagonist meets to life.

The story and factual information in this book should appeal to children in the 5-12 age group.

Parents will love both the story and factual information. Many of the new readers who have read the book have given feedback that they were excited and interested to learn more about the unusual animals that Stripe meets such as the aardvark, civet, wild cat, bushbaby, caracal, genet, pangolin, and springhare. They also thought that Stripe was a fun and entertaining character.

The paperback book was updated in June 2022. The book now has three distinct sections: the story, fun facts with photographs, and a new separate glossary. The information on owls was also updated with additional information.


This the what the author's closest childhood friend, Carol R, had to say:
"Oh Tanja, this is such a lovely story. I could picture myself in a bush camp, smelling the grass, and listening to the night sounds. So magical and what a wonderful gift to your daughter regarding her other homeland...I can't wait to share this with my brother's kids who have just come back from Sabie."

This is what a friend from church, Abby M, said:
"Tanja it’s just wonderful. Both my kids loved it. We all learned so much about animals we didn’t even know existed. Especially loved the Caracal and Serval. The illustrations are lovely, and friendly and my kids loved the facial expressions on the honey badgers. They also really enjoyed the beautiful photography in the second part. Thank you so much for this wonderful gift!"

This is what the author's daughter's 5th grade teacher, Lauren T, said:
"Thank you for thinking of me and giving me a copy of your book. It's awesome! We are currently learning about food webs and biomes, so this is perfect." 

This is what a teacher (and cousin) in England, Lyndsey L, said:
"Love your book by the way! We're sending it out to our nephew's in-laws as they were wondering about the names of animals in different languages when we went on a game drive and have a one-year-old son, so the whole family will enjoy it. He will love the family story too. We loved it!!"

My favourite review by a happy customer, Susan F:
"I'm 81 and have been to Africa 15 times. I particularly enjoyed the story because night game drives are one of my favorite Africa activities. Stripe's narrative is a nicely simplified version of how an adult tourist might describe a night game drive to friends. The after the story information section about the wildlife encountered by Stripe is concise and very educational. I bought several copies of the book and plan to give them in November to friends in Botswana who own Qorokwe Camp. I told them their twin granddaughters would love the book. I also suggested that the information section after the story should be required reading for their wildlife guides training. The name of each animal in multiple languages would be especially helpful when they are driving guests from non-English speaking countries."

Review from the happy teacher in South Africa, Carron:
"As a teacher of 7-year-olds at an all-boys school in South Africa, I had a target audience to assess the level of interest in this book. The boys particularly loved the facts about the animals at the end of the book and they loved the illustrations. The fictional aspect of the book was well suited to the year group below my class who thoroughly enjoyed the story as well as the message intertwined. It is extremely well written and a great book for developing comprehension skills as well as being an educational tool when learning about South African animals. It is a great addition to any school library. Anyone taking their children for a trip to a game reserve should definitely purchase this book." 


Book Excerpt

"The day has come to a close as the hot African sun dips behind the rugged Drakensberg Mountains.

It is the end of another busy day for some of the many wonderful animals who live out their days on the exciting open plains of the savannah, and just the beginning of the night’s activities for a number of other marvelous creatures living in the Lowveld.

“Wake up, sleepyhead,” says mommy honey badger to her sturdy black-and-white pup, Stripe. “It is time to look for breakfast.”

“But, why?” asks her sleepy son. “I think most of the other animals are going to sleep now.”

“The day may be over for them, my child,” his mother replies in a gentle voice, “but for us the night is the time to rise.”"


About the Author

Tanja Nayak

Tanja Nayak was born in Johannesburg, South Africa and always loved wildlife and nature thanks to annual winter safaris in the Kruger National Park. She can count the number of times she has seen honey badgers on her trips spanning many years on one hand - but each memory has stayed fresh in her mind despite the distance of years. She believes that the honey badger was the appropriate choice to finish writing about and publish a book about during a pandemic year as honey badgers are energetic, courageous, and determined. We all could use a little honey badger energy in our lives to see us through persevering through challenging times. A honey badger never gives up and they certainly never fail to do what they have set their mind's upon achieving!

She also wrote the story so she could also share information about other lesser-known nocturnal African wildlife in story and factual form such as the civet and genet. In addition to this she wanted to draw attention to the plight of pangolins which are a critically endangered species.

The pandemic turned out to be positive for her because she was unable to travel abroad in 2020 due to restrictions and wanted to create a virtual safari through the book to remind her of happier times.

When she was a child she wanted to grow up to be an explorer like Mary Kingsley who traveled extensively in Africa, but today she lives in Colorado and travels to South Africa with her husband and daughter when possible. She didn't realize it at the time, but she actually did travel quite a bit throughout Southern Africa in her youth not only to the Kruger National Park, but also the Blyde River Canyon, Sudwala Caves, Victoria Falls, Great Zimbabwe, Kariba Dam, Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe, Augrabies Falls, Kalahari Desert, Drakensberg Mountains, Transkei Wild Coast, Hluluwe and Umfolozi Game Reserves, St. Lucia Estuary, Knysna Lagoon, Ai Ais Hot Springs, Fish River Canyon, Namib Desert, Skeleton Coast, Etosha Pan, and the Cape because her father loved taking her family on road trips. She feels privileged to have had such an upbringing because she knows that there are children who don't even know what the night sky looks like without city lights!

When her family is not heading off on safari they enjoy hiking in the Rocky Mountains and especially spotting moose and birds.

Her present dreams are to see a tiger in the wild in India and to travel to Tanzania and Kenya to see the "Big Five." 

Also by Tanja Nayak

Spot’s Busy Day in the Bushveld