“I know of no pleasure deeper than that which comes from contemplating the natural world and trying to understand it.”
― David Attenborough
Every day I learn something new here at Londolozi. In nature, nothing remains constant. This is what draws people to the wild; you never know what you are going to see. So, when contemplating as to what images I would use for this week’s TWIP, I had a look at some from the past. I noticed that although some consist of the same individuals – similar animals in similar settings – every image and every story behind the image was different. All of these pictures are unique, captivating and enjoyable in their own way.
With grasses starting to dry, less shrubbery as distractions, and mornings and evenings having those extended winter periods of orange light, great photographic opportunities are becoming the norm. I always try and look for something unique to capture through the lens, I become captivated by the natural world around me and most importantly I make sure I enjoy every moment.
With that being said, enjoy this Week in Pictures.
Night falls. One of the Birmingham male lions lies with his head up, listening for the roars of his brothers in the distance.
An elephant cow feeds while her warm breath is backlit against the sunrise. Whilst we can bundle up against the cold, animals like elephants can’t do much about it, and simply carry on as normal..
A male wild dog perks up as he sees some of his pack members starting their pre-hunt ritualised greeting
A vervet monkey perches high in a knobthorn tree and scans the surrounding bush for any signs of danger. Vervet monkeys usually have a sentinel that will stand guard while the rest of the troop forages nearby.
A southern white-faced owl stares at us after being disturbed. After viewing it with binoculars, we noticed it had a rodent kill in its talons.
A young Hyena finishes off the remains of a young impala ram on a cold winter’s morning. Quite a gory photo but shows the rawness of the wild.
A young tawny eagle amongst the branches of a dead knobthorn tree. The beautiful pinks and purples of the evening winter sky make this season all the more spectacular.
One of the Ntsevu pride’s lion cubs stalks up to a waterhole cautiously. Muddy water is the perfect place for a crocodile to hide and ambush an unsuspecting visitor to the water, hence this cub’s careful approach.
The Nkoveni young female leopard stares into sunrise while she waits for her mother to return from a night of territorial patrolling. This young leopard is being seen on her own more and more these days, and it won’t be long until she is fully independent.
Often when you see a bateleur on the ground, it can be a good indication that there is a kill in the area. However in this case, this one was looking for any termites or insects to feed on.
Two wildebeest cows warm up in the early morning sun. The mornings have been particularly cold recently and a lot of the herbivore species are particularly exposed to the chill out in the open clearings.
The Nkoveni female leopard pauses to listen. As supernatural as their eyesight is, leopards’ hearing is just as a cute, and it is their ears more often than not that make them wise to danger or a nearby prey species.
Side by side. A perfect example of the difference between a red-billed and yellow-billed oxpecker.
The interesting long eyelashes of this elephant which will help avert blowing sand, dirt, and debris from her eyes. Elephants often favour thorn trees as food, and with their faces moving in and amongst the thorny branches, they need a good warning mechanism when something sharp is close to their eye, a role which their eyelashes fill well.
All eyes on me. The extremely intimidating gaze of a bull hippo.
When cropping a photograph, using the ‘rule of thirds’ can sometimes be naturally stimulating and engaging for the eye. Here the Nkoveni female leopard looks out into the ‘dead space’ in the photo, leaving one wondering what she is looking at.