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On Wednesday people from all over South Africa cast their vote in the Local Government Elections. Much like the EFF has not been able to rally much support, no one put their hand up to carry the weight of responsibility for this week’s TWIP. However, falling in line with the rest of the country’s spirit of camaraderie, we’ve created a collaboration to close the week off with. Despite it being an incredible week of game viewing all round, the return of the Sparta Pride to Londolozi is probably the most notable and exciting of news in my opinion. These lions killed an adult buffalo cow in the south of the reserve and we got to spend many hours with them and their four cubs, who we have not seen much of late.
Without further ado, enjoy this Week in Pictures…
A Sparta lioness looks up from a drink at a pan in the south of Londolozi. The pride had made a kill just a few hundred metres from this water source, meaning it was easy for them to feast and quench their thirst at will. f5, 1/40s, ISO 2500. Photograph by Amy Attenborough
A collared sunbird feeds from an Aloe Marlothii situated in the camp gardens. Despite the bush looking rather dry and drab at the moment, the Aloe’s are all in full bloom, splashing bright reds, oranges and yellows throughout the bush, drawing all manner of life to their flowers. f5,6, 1/1000s, ISO 1000. Photograph by Amy Attenborough
The Tamboti Female leopard lounges in a Russet bushwillow tree, trying to get comfortable after feeding on an impala she had killed earlier that morning. This female has been extremely successful with her hunting of late and is now on a new kill further north into her territory. f5,6, 1/320s, ISO 1250. Photograph by Amanda Ritchie
Two inquisitive hyena cubs put their play on hold to investigate the vehicle. The cubs are growing rapidly, already losing their dark coat and starting to get the same spotting as the adults. f7,1, 1/320s, ISO 400. Photograph by Amy Attenborough
One of the Sparta lionesses looks up from her buffalo kill as the first sun rays of the day peek over the gwarrie bushes. Ntsako Sibuyi and his guests had stopped for a cup of coffee nearby when the bellowing of the buffalo cow reverberated through the chill morning air, and they sped towards the noise just in time to witness the final act in the drama. This photo was taken the morning after, when a significant portion of the carcass had already been devoured. f4, 1/5000s, ISO 2000. Photograph by James Tyrrell
The Mashaba Female leopard scans the surrounds from the tops of a leadwood tree. She had an impala kill stashed in the tree, which we suspect she may have stolen from another leopard. f7,1, 1/1600s, ISO 400. Photograph by Amy Attenborough
A Hooded Vulture rests atop a dead knobthorn tree hoping for some scraps off a carcass. These birds have specially designed slender beaks to grab at pieces of meat in hard-to-reach places. f5,6, 1/800s, ISO 2000. Photograph by Amy Attenborough
The ostrich pair that have been very much in the spotlight recently, without actually being in the spotlight, if you get my meaning. The male (pictured right), although relaxing visibly in the presence of the vehicles, is nevertheless slightly more timid than the female, which is understandable as she’s had three years to become habituated. f5, 1/500s, ISO 320. Photograph by James Tyrrell
A young lion cub from the Tsalala pride plays at the base of a rocky outcrop that has been their den site for the last couple months. Rocks, trees, open areas and a dry river bed lie within close reach of the den site, making it an ideal place for the youngsters to explore and learn in. f5, 1/1600s, ISO 800. Photograph by Nick Kleer
A pearl-spotted owlet, one of Africa’s smallest owls, reaches up to scratch itself with a pretty sharp claw; a manoeuvre which I imagine necessitated some caution. f2.8, 1/800s, ISO 1250. Photograph by James Tyrrell
The Mashaba Female leopard rests in the boughs of a Tamboti, while her daughter feeds on a kill in a nearby tree. f4, 1/2000s, ISO 640. Photograph by Nick Kleer
This tiny calf spent its morning gambolling around the vehicle during breaks from feeding. I have never seen such a young calf grazing as much as this one was; it is quite possible that the mother’s milk is lacking in nutrition owing to limited grazing availability, and the calf is needing to find alternate sources of nutrition. f3.2, 1/5000s, ISO 200. Photograph by James Tyrrell
Photographically this photo of a saddle-billed stork isn’t anything special, but I included it because it shows how the stork makes use of its nictitating membrane as its face approaches the water. The nictitating membrane is a whitish or translucent membrane found in birds, fish and some mammals that can be drawn across the eye as protection from dust or other potential dangers, or to keep it moist. The point at which the stork’s face approaches the water is clearly the danger point for the eye, hence the deployment of the membrane. f6.3, 1/1000s, ISO 640. Photograph by James Tyrrell
A Golden-tailed Woodpecker, creates a cloud of dust as it taps away at the branch of a tree, foraging for food. f5,6, 1/2500s, ISO 2000. Photograph by Amanda Ritchie
Photographs by Amy Attenborough, James Tyrrell, Amanda Ritchie and Nick Kleer
Amy worked at Londolozi from 2014 to 2017, guiding full time before moving into the media department, where her photographic and story-telling skills shone through. Her deep love of all things wild and her spiritual connection to Africa set her writing and guiding ...