This week at Paula’s Thursday’s Special/Photo 101 the theme is ‘double’. I could have chosen several more striking close-ups of elephants and lions, but this shot is a double-take on double. I like that silhouette in the still pool. Also it is perhaps a more realistic view of how one most often sees wildlife on an East African safari: i.e. it’s usually too far away for a good photo, or else there’s a bush in the way. You can also drive round game parks for many hours and spot absolutely nothing – not even a bird.
This shot was taken from the terrace at the safari lodge in Kenya’s Tsavo East National Park, and such places can offer the best sightings, especially at dawn and sundown. Here you also get a good eyeful of Tsavo’s famously red earth. You can see, too, the web of game trails leading to the pool, and at the very top of the photo, part of the Yatta Plateau. This is a 180 mile long, single finger of lava that runs south east across Kenya from Thika near Nairobi.
Tsavo East is a vast game reserve (4,500 square miles), mostly thorn scrub and much of it closed to visitors due to incursions by Somali bandits and poachers. Its elephant herds, however, are famous, though frequently under threat. For some truly fantastic images of them, accompanied by expert commentary please fly over to wildlife filmmaker, Mark Deeble’s blog. You will not be disappointed.