I’ve had the amazing good fortune to see wild dogs on all of my trips to Southern Africa. I don’t think I could ever tire of spending time with these amazing animals; seeing the interaction between different members of the pack is always an interesting experience. On this past trip, I had two different sightings; one where the dogs were active and out in the open, and the other, where they were lazing away the morning deep in a thicket.
I saved my favourite for last for my final instalment of July’s topic – Babies in the bush. I was actually so spoiled for choice with images of baby elephants that it was difficult to select which images to share. I’m not complaining, it is definitely a good problem to have!
On all of the properties we visited, the elephant sightings were prolific; so much so that a couple of our guides even commented about the volume of elephants sightings that we were having, and how lucky we were. There were moments that no matter which direction you looked, you were surrounded by elephants. And when we carried on down a road to see what else we could see, around every bend in the road, there were more. Being in the presence of these magnificent animals brings me such a feeling of peace and joy, so you’ll never hear me complain about seeing too many elephants while out on safari.
You can’t help but smile while watching baby elephants. They have so much personality, and are often very precocious and curious. You’ll often see them mock charging vehicles trying to be big and tough, playing with sticks and branches in the bush, tussling with their little friends, having a temper tantrum when something isn’t going their way, or playing shy, hiding between Mom and other larger, more confident elephants.
Last week I focused on leopard cubs, and this week, it’s the lions. The lion sightings on this past trip started out very slowly, which was a stark contrast to previous trips to South Africa, but, you just never know what mother nature is going to show you. The first cub that was spotted was an older cub (a teenager) with her mom and aunt on a buffalo kill at King’s Camp in the Timbavati region. These weren’t the first lions that I saw, but the first lion that was still young enough to be referred to as a cub by our ranger, rather than a sub-adult.
On my last day at King’s Camp, we found a huge pride of lions, and I actually lost count of the cubs, there were so many of them around. They were spread out over a fairly large area, so I don’t even have a photo with the whole pride visible to try and recount, but it was around 12-14 individuals, including the two pride males that were spotted nearby.
Both for lions and the leopards, the cubs that I saw on this past trip were quite a bit older than some of the tiny babies I saw on previous trips, but no less wonderful to spend time with. And, the nice thing about the most of the lion sightings on this past trip is they were a bit active, rather than just snoozing away the day (or night).
I hope you enjoy my selections for the week; wishing you a fantastic week ahead!
This past trip was filled with a lot of rhino sightings, and like elephants, I think they make terrific subjects for black and white photography. Their thick, textured skin can be highlighted very well in monochrome, and by removing colour, it is actually easier to see how such a large animal can blend into the surroundings so well.
I hope you enjoy my selections for the day; I hope your Monday is fantastic!
During my last trip, we saw leopard cubs both in the Timbavati and in the Sabi Sands. The cubs I spent time with on this trip were a bit older than the ones I saw during my 2017 trip, but certainly no less amazing to watch. If you missed some of the previous posts, you can see some of the older images here and here (or just search the site for leopards).
During my time in the Timbavati, we found one leopard cub, and while in the Sabi Sands we saw one cub on a few different occasions. These shy, beautiful cats will grow up to be stealthy hunters, but for now, they are totally reliant on their Mom for food and protection. I absolutely believe that leopards only allow you to see them if they want you to, so having an opportunity to view these babies is an absolute thrill.
When you pull up to a small group of impala, in my experience they will either bolt immediately, or give you a passing glance and then go back to grazing. But when you encounter a large herd like this near the side of the road, things tend to get a bit hectic, quite quickly.
We stopped to take some pictures of the herd and all was calm; until it wasn’t. The noise of the vehicle didn’t startle them; perhaps it was realizing that we were actually looking at them, not something else, that brought up their urge to flee. Or brought up the order for one of them to flee… but when one bolts, all the others follow suit.
A lot of people don’t really give impala a passing glance whilst out on safari; their abundance in so many areas; compared to the relative scarcity of predator sightings, can make them seem a bit boring to some. I think they are beautiful creatures though, and love when I have the opportunity to watch them and take a few images.
I hope you enjoy my selections this week. I hope your week ahead is wonderful! 🙂
I’m sure most would have expected me to start with elephants for my first post in a series on babies in the bush; and I was tempted to. We spent time with so many large herds, and saw so many young elephants, I am spoiled for choice with images. But, I decided that I would start with something different, and chose to focus on animals with hooves instead. My timing was wrong to see tiny impala, but I did see a fair number of young giraffe, waterbuck and zebra during my travels.
I hope you enjoy my selections, and wishing you an excellent week ahead.
Happy Canada day to my friends and family. I know I should have been out capturing the beauty of my own country, but the day has been pretty rainy and miserable, so instead, I offer you today a trio of baby elephants.