I had a tough time finding something I liked so I settled on this one. It can be interpreted as growth as in mother and child OR it can just be considered a very strange growth on the underside of this monkey in South Africa….
While we were in Africa we happened upon these two Woodland Kingfishers sitting together on a tree branch along side of the road. It was a cute shot so I took it.
As chance would have it, they were doing more than just sitting there – they were finishing their negotiations at the bar and were preparing to head to the bedroom – without moving much. I kept shooting and managed to catch the entire sequence of flapping, feathers, and avian fornication. I limited this to one shot to avoid the censors.
As an incurable dog lover, you will always find me posting dog photos from pretty much everywhere we go. These cute little pups are a little different – they are spotted hyena pups that found one late afternoon just sitting by the side of the road in Kruger National Park. The mother was about 40 yards away – also laying by the side of the road and paying no attention to her little ones. At this age, the hyenas look much more like little dogs and they haven’t developed that lopey, lazy walk that the adults all seem to have. These guys just seem like naturals to take home and play with. We were especially lucky to run across these pups with just a few rays of light breaking through the trees to bask them in a late afternoon reddish tint…..clicking for a close up is highly encouraged.
This might be a stretch for this subject but I think the following photo represents hope in at least three ways:
- The hope that the Leopard is showing that he can find some prey
- The hope that we humans can take the actions needed to keep these magnificent animals alive and thriving in their natural environments, and
- The hope that I can continue to have the extraordinary luck and opportunity to “capture” these animals and share them with you.
While the third hope is pretty selfish and minor in the great scheme of things, I hope that in some small way, we photographers can help inspire people to prioritize the preservation of these animals, and nature in general, for our future generations. Have a great weekend everyone!
These guys are always kind of ominous looking – like they are just waiting to kill something. The way they walk, with their heads hanging down, their huge paws, and just their overall demeanor add to this feeling. The spotted hyena is the largest of the three hyenas found in Africa. Surprisingly, although they certainly look like some kind of dog, they are actually a closer relation to the cat family! This specimen was just walking up a paved road when we first saw him. He didn’t pay much attention to us as he walked on by – maybe not so fearsome after all?
Most people think these warthogs are among the least attractive animals in Africa….except for my wife! She just loves these things and was very excited every time we ran across them. They are normally pretty skittish and I ended up with many warthog “butt” shots…but….these two seemed pretty interested in watching us, watching them. Ugly or beauty in this beast?
We visited a small lake that had several different kinds of birds as well as numerous Hippos and Crocodiles. I thought this one caught the kind of variety show theme that the place had – a great blue heron landing on a Hippo and, if you look closely behind the heron, a crocodile lurking in the background. Quite a reality show.
We got to watch a lion pride for a nice period of time so we got to see various behaviors including hunting, playing, and what they do best during the day – sitting under a tree avoiding the sun. One of the things that was a little surprising, at least to me, was that they use the trees just like a kitten’s scratching post. If you look closely at some of the trees you can see where they have clawed some large gashes in them. This photo was of two of the lions scratching at the same time – don’t you just want to take them home (and can you imagine what your furniture would look like)?
This is one of my favorite captures from our Africa trip. It was taken in early morning sunlight which gave the lion a great glint in the eye. Couldn’t think of a better picture to illustrate the forward look and promise of a brand new year. Best wishes to all for a Healthy and Happy 2012!
So here’s the 4th member of the Big 5 – the Cape Buffalo. These large beasts are pretty imposing and although they look kind of docile, they earned their reputation as a dangerous animal. Wikepedia says that they still gore and kill over 200 people a year (sounds high to me). Whatever the stats are, the buffalo’s stare is enough to tell you not to mess with them. This one, like most of the larger, slower moving animals we saw, had a red billed oxpecker feeding on the parasites that live on them. I was lucky to get a shot with both faces prominent in the frame…..