i just spent a fair whack on a new camera yesterday actully, its 10mp with 12x optical zoom which is quite amazing as it still keeps the quality and it has 5.7digital zoom aswel which reduces the quality a bit, and loads of amazing features on it, and its great at close up shots aswel, allthough i wont be going too close to any lions or hippo's@Ryan - enjoy the safari, but do yourself a favour and take a decent camera along, you'll kick yourself if all your pictures of the lions and elephants come back blurry
Take some spare (charged) batteries and memory cards too, the worst thing would be to run out of juice or space and not be able to take any more pictures. When I went to Kenya a few years ago I actually took a film camera (as we were camping, so no electricity at all) and shot through 12 rolls of 36 exposure film. You'll love it!
Just to echo the comments above on the work though, very impressive stuff, and great to have shared the progress with the forum, it's been very interesting.