African wildlife in Southern Kenya

Monday, November 26, 2012posted by Bruce 5:01 PM

African Safari in May 2012 – Part Two

Africa is not just about the ‘Big Five’. It’s also about all the other amazing creatures and ecosystems that make up the tremendous biodiversity of flora and fauna found here.

 

Bull elephant just after a rain in Amboseli National Park

It can be said that Kenya is one of the most diverse and best-protected wildlife habitats anywhere in the world where tourists and photographers alike can consistently see and photograph wild animals up-close for the most part.

Striped hyena in Tsavo (East) National Park

However, some of Kenya’s wildlife is not that easy to spot like the rare striped hyena or sable antelope, while others are downright easy such as elephants and buffalo for example.

Sable antelope male in the mist at Shimba Hills Wildlife Sanctuary

Some species have become so habituated to safari vehicles and its occupants, especially lion and cheetah. Most times the big cats simply ignore you. But not all these animals are that tame like the elusive leopard, or even antelope like eland.

Eland bull in Nairobi National Park

Some creatures flee at the first sight of a vehicle and man (years and years of poaching pressure) knowing very well that retreat is the only safe course of action, and humans are not to be trusted.

Bat-eared fox near dusk in Amboseli

Hence, it is not always that easy as some might surmise. It’s about luck too. Some days are stellar while others are just mediocre. But for the most part, it is a photographers dream come true..!

Rock hyrax in Tsavo (West) National Park

While on safari, I shoot everything I see (through the lens of course) until I’m satisfied I have the shot, or the animal has left the scene.

Rock hyrax family in Tsavo

Over the past three years, I have made three trips to the ‘Dark Continent’ and you could say I’m addicted to the place. This trip I visited Amboseli and Tsavo national parks near Mount Kilomanjaro, Taita Wildlife Sanctuary nearby and Shimba Hills Wildlife Sanctuary near the southern coastal city of Mombassa plus Nairobi National Park over two weeks.

Lioness during late afternoon in Tsavo (East) National Park

I traveled some 3,00o kilometers with my good friend and guide/driver, Patrick Mjoroge, a Kenya national. With more than 25 years of experience, he has been an important asset in my photographic quest. 

Lioness on the run after prey in Tsavo

Transworldsafaris.com in Nairobi have also been very helpful in setting up my trips. They are truly one of Kenya’s best safari companies and I recommend them to anyone interested in going.

Another giraffe male in Tsavo (East)

I now have accumulated quite a lot of photographs for an up-coming book project about wildlife in Asia and Africa showing  a comparison between the two continents.

Giraffe during late afrternoon in Shimba Hills

At the end of the day, the game of wildlife photography is all about how lucky you are. What is around the next bush or bend in the road is the big question?

Zebra taking it easy in Amboseli

I have been very fortunate to visit Kenya but consistency, good photographic technique and equipment plus determination is the real secret to successful wildlife photography, whether it’s in Africa, Asia or the U.S. for that matter.

Thompson’s gazelle in Nairobi

Shortly (December 5th), I leave for Kenya once more (3-week trip) and hope I can close out a few more species still not in the bag like kudu and wild dog that have been very elusive.

Hippo mother and calf in Amboseli

It is hoped all will take pleasure in this photo essay as much as I have writing and photographing it. Enjoy…!

Additional photos while on safari in May:

Nile crocodile in Tsavo (West)

Cheetah on the prowl in Amboseli

Cheetah family in Amboseli

Cheetah on the run in Amboseli

Red hartebeest in Taita Wildlife Sanctuary

Thompson’s gazelle in Amboseli

Black-headed heron in Amboseli

Sacred ibis in Nairobi

Bateleur pair in Tsavo (East)

Glossy ibis in Tsavo (West)

Ostrich in Nairobi

Marabou stork in Tsavo (West)

Grey-headed crane in Amboseli

African fish eagle in Amboseli

Ground hornbills in Tsavo (West)

Sable male in Shimba Hills

Sable female and calf in Shimbe Hills

 

Cape buffalo in Nairobi National Park



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