First up is the answer to yesterday’s bird challenge.
The Mystery Bird was a Wahlberg’s Eagle.
It was quite a tricky one, but if you look carefully you can just see the dark patch of its folded-down crest. That might have been easier for those viewing on PCs rather than mobile devices…
“The capacity to learn is a gift; the ability to learn is a skill; the
willingness to learn is a choice.”
― Brian Herbert
As I am slowly – or should I say quickly – getting encapsulated by photographing wildlife, I find myself surrounded by many people who have already been taken down this journey and are now passionate and experienced wildlife photographers. This TWIP is built on learning and my photographic journey thus far. Recently I had the pleasure of driving a well-known wildlife photographer, and although it was my job to find and create photographic opportunities for her, I also allowed myself to learn in return. I particularly learned to take images from a distance. We are very fortunate to get close to animals on Londolozi but sometimes creating the setting and watching from a distance can create an incredible image.
This learning process has encouraged me to open my mind to learning from everyone that I can. Some of my colleagues are the most exceptional photographers, each with their own individual touch, and each can teach me so much. Surround yourself with those that inspire you. Even those that are also just starting their photographic journey have the ability to give you perspectives that you would have never thought of when trying to capture that ‘perfect’ image. In this case a friend of mine stopped for me to take a photo simply of good light on a Scotia tree, which I have to be honest, didn’t turn out quite how we imagined but the next time I saw this, I snatched the opportunity and captured one of my favourite images.
Two years into wildlife photography and I have so much to learn from so many around me. It’s quite an exciting thought. This week’s images are all ones that I have based on what I have learned over the past two weeks.
Enjoy this Week in Pictures…
The airstrip is often a great place for crossing of wildlife; here a hyena waits and listens in the purple light of an overcast morning to hear if there are alarm calls in the area, possibly signalling a predator and some free food. We were doing the exact same thing.
Moonlight allowed us to watch as a Birmingham male had a quick drink, but before doing so he was distracted by his own reflection in the night.
This Hippo Bull was not happy with our presence as he displayed his size by gaping his jaws wide and a large splash of water. We kept our distance.
A male leopard scans his surrounds, very relaxed as we viewed from quite a distance. The moment we moved closer, he vanished down the tree and into the long grass. Skittish and elusive; the natural behaviour of leopards who have not had the time to become habituated to the presence of man.
I still cannot believe the incredible light from this morning. We stopped on a crest and just watched the misty morning as the sun rose above the rolling hills.
This impressive buffalo bull looks at the rest of his herd as the sun slowly sets behind him.
Long grass has made photography challenging over the last few months.
A young giraffe stares at us through the green thicket. With the bush so lush at the moment, sometimes you only see the neck and head of the tallest animal on earth.
The Flat Rock male has his eyes set on a termite mound. Leopards will often investigate inactive termite mounds to see if there are any warthog families inside; if there are, then it becomes a waiting game.
Probably one of my most incredible elephant sightings as two bulls – one seen in this image – splashed and played around in this waterhole for about an hour. We sat, watched, laughed and were left speechless by the sheer enjoyment they provided us.
The Senegal Bush male. As the constant battle for territories continues between the male leopards of Londolozi, it is an exciting time to be tracking as you never know which male leopard you may find. We found this male with a kill in the tree, which is what his eyes were clearly focused on.
An overcast morning, low-lying clouds and heavy rains gave me the opportunity to capture these zebra on the airstrip.
Two buffalo bulls enjoy a pan as it cools them down on a hot day. We have been seeing quite a lot of a large herd of buffalo and it creates a breathtaking scene when they all come to drink in big numbers.
An impala ram is very alert as he watches two male lions patrol on a misty summer’s morning.
The Ximungwe young male shows us how vicious a leopard’s teeth can look as he snarls at a hyena nearby.
African Green Pigeons are such beautiful birds, often only seen in thick green foliage on the heights of a tall tree, so to see these two individuals out in the open on some dead branches was great. They were very relaxed, allowing us to look at all their colour variations in their feathers.
Crocodiles’ cat-like eyes are able to see in colour, underwater and at night. A sense like this needs to be kept safe; crocodiles have thick reinforced eye-lids and during an attack they can draw their eyeballs back into the sockets for protection.
The key tool to a leopard’s unbelievable balance when in trees; its tail.
One of the Birmingham Male Lions, walking through the mauve flowers of Wild Foxglove.