Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Cub up a dead tree

Hlaba nkunzi and her cubs were chased off yet another kill by a lioness yesterday, the poor cubs spending most of their day perched safely up a tree.

One of the cubs was clearly bored up there for so long and was very curious towards us gazing up from underneath, providing some great photo opportunities.

The day was overcast and the light very harsh so my 580 EX II flash was used to full effect in brightening up the cubs face and adding detail to the expressions. What was also nice was that the tree they chose was dead so no leaf and branch clutter in the images!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Painted Wolves

We managed to catch the wild dogs while they were relaxing. We usually find them on the move at quite a pace so it was a refreshing change not to be chasing and trying to keep up with them on the hunt!

A backdrop of recently burnt grass, a few green shoots and some winter brown combined with the painted coat and some late afternoon light. This created a wonderful composition for this one.

The glowing orange eyes and cocked ears in this image capture the essence of my favourite animal to spend time with in Africa!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Mapogo Fury!

Yesterday we were treated to the ultimate display of raw power in Africa, 2 male lions in an intense battle over a female!

This all unfolded in front of the camp after the males had been seriously tracking a buffalo herd. A female lion turned up and suddenly the buffalo were gone and all attention was focused on the female in oestrus! Brothers hunting together quickly turned into brothers fighting over the female.

Everything happened so fast as these things tend to do but I managed to get a high enough shutter speed to freeze the action. None of the males were clearly dominant and the fight ended abruptly with both licking their wounds.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Cubs First Kill

Lots of long grass in the image but it is more the interaction and expression on the cubs face that captures the story here... This is most likely the first proper kill for the two 8 month old cubs.

What happened was that the mother (Hlaba Nkunzi) managed to subdue the young Bushbuck and left it for her cubs to practice their hunting skills with.

An emotional sight for some but what a priveledge to watch the young cubs development. In this image is the young female cub who dominated the male cub and didn't let him very close to "her catch".