Wild Earth Fine Art Wild Earth Fine Art

Kenya 2013: Day 8 – Slippery wet muddy drives!

The lions outside camp were already eating when we left before sunrise & the hyenas were prowling around waiting to snatch a tasty morsel. We moved on, westwards and went to look in the den we had seen a few days ago – the lioness was in there with her 4 very young cubs suckling. A little further on was another lioness walking out with her two small playful cubs.

Lioness with very young cubs

Lioness with very young cubs

The ground was very slippery after last night’s rain – we seemed to be travelling sideways more than forward and it made going down & up the steep river banks when crossing particularly ‘exciting’. A couple of times the 4×4’s got stuck – once right next to the lion’s den so there was no getting out to attach tow ropes there!!! A push from behind by another vehicle & mud & exhaust fumes flying everywhere thankfully did the trick!

We stopped briefly to photograph a secretary bird in a tree against the colourful sunrise.

Secretary bird

Secretary bird

A little further on there was a pair of snoozing lions, the male (one of Notch’s sons) with a fresh cut on is right cheek. A bit further on was a pride of 10 lions tucking into their wildebeest kill with a jackal trying hard to steal a bit!

One of Notch's sons

One of Notch’s sons

 

Lioness with kill

Lioness with kill

We stopped for breakfast out on the plain with termite colony & trailing ants to keep us busy with our cameras – large black ants about 2cm long busy carrying their larvae with them.

After breakfast we passed the pride again – not much left of their kill now. The vultures were tucking into the detached legs and the jackal scurried away with a bone – his long wait rewarded.

Jackal stealing bone

Jackal stealing bone

Back at camp we managed to have a walk down to the Mara river before lunch (accompanied by a Massai guy with his dagger & spear!) strange to see it empty after seeing & photographing the same spot 2 yrs ago with hundreds of wildebeest making their river crossing.

Our last evening drive started just as a thunderstorm was starting with torrential rain. First stop was giraffes followed by a family of elephants – got some dramatic shots of them waking towards the camera in the pouring rain.

Elephants in the rain

Elephants in the rain

The clouds parted enough to just reveal a glowing red sunset and the rain stopped as we photographed a long tailed starling and watched a few very sleepy lions with impatient hyenas prowling around.