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Masai Boys
We visited a Masai village whilst on the reserve. More of that later. I came across a couple of small boys in the doorway of their traditional hutted dwelling and liked the way it framed them. I was using a long telephoto zoom and a fair way off so they were complete oblivious to me.

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking and a fairly hefty crop in photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 199mm), aperture f7.1, exposure 1/850 sec, ISO 1000 taken handheld.

#Kenya #masai #boys #travel #travelphotography #portrait #roadside #BTPPortraitPro – +BTP Portrait Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Aamir Shahzad #masaimara #masaimaranationalreserve
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Playful Hippos
We were really lucky. A pod of hippos was situated just below us. I took this shot from the small garden in front of our hotel lodge which was perched on stilts just behind me. These two guys, youngsters I assume, were playing with one another in mock battle.

The word "hippopotamus" is derived from the ancient Greek, from hippos, "horse", and potamos, "river", meaning "horse of the river". In English, the plural is hippopotamuses, but "hippopotami" is also used; "hippos" can be used as a short plural. Hippopotamuses are gregarious, living in groups of up to thirty animals. A group is called a pod, herd, dale, or bloat.

Studying the interaction of male and female hippopotamuses has long been complicated because females and young males are almost indistinguishable in the field. Although hippos lie close to each other, they do not seem to form social bonds except between mothers and daughters; they are not social animals. The reason they huddle close together is unknown.

Hippopotamuses are territorial only in water, where a bull presides over a small stretch of river, on average 250 m (270 yd) in length, and containing 10 females. The largest pods can contain over 100 hippos. Younger bachelors are allowed in a bull's stretch, as long as they behave submissively toward the bull. The territories of hippos exist to establish mating rights. Within the pods, the hippos tend to segregate by gender. Bachelors lounge near other bachelors, females with other females, and the bull on his own. When hippos emerge from the water to graze, they do so individually.

Hippopotamuses appear to communicate vocally, through grunts and bellows, and they may practice echolocation, but the purpose of these vocalizations is currently unknown. Hippos have the unique ability to hold their heads partially above the water and send out a cry that travels through both water and air; individuals respond above and under water.

I used the original RAW file to control som blown out highlights here then undertook some minor tweaking/cropping in acr/photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 539mm), aperture f7.1, exposure 1/160 sec, ISO 800 taken using a monopod from the riverbank, (swimming with them wasn't an option!)

#Hippo #hippopotamus #hippos #playful #masaimara #masaimaranationalreserve #massai #masai #wildlife #wild #kenya #fuji100to400mm #gamedrive #africa #african #safari #fujixe2 #wildlifephotography #naturephotography #naturelovers #naturephotos #nature #conservation #hqspanimals +HQSP Animals curated by +Andy Smith +Nicol Eh +Shannon Adelson #BTPAnimalPRO+BTP Animal Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Annette Junge Daugaard #Animalia (+Animalia) created & managed by +Adelphe BACHELET #PhotoManiaUK +Photo Mania UK curated by +Hans-Juergen Werner +Walli Werner +Janusz Bednarski and +Chandro Ji+G+ Photos Collection #playfulhippos
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Jackal
We caught up with this chap on the Buffalo Springs National Reserve in Kenya.
Jackals are medium-sized omnivorous mammals of the genus canis, which also includes wolves and the domestic dog. While the word "jackal" has historically been used for many small canids, in modern use it most commonly refers to three species: the closely related black-backed jackal and side-striped jackal of sub-Saharan Africa, and the golden jackal of south-central Eurasia, which is more closely related to other members of the genus canis.

Jackals and coyotes (sometimes called the "American jackal") are opportunistic omnivores, predators of small- to medium-sized animals and proficient scavengers. Their long legs and curved canine teeth are adapted for hunting small mammals, birds, and reptiles, and their large feet and fused leg bones give them a physique well-suited for long-distance running, capable of maintaining speeds of 16 km/h (9.9 mph) for extended periods of time. Jackals are crepuscular, most active at dawn and dusk.

Their most common social unit is a monogamous pair, which defends its territory from other pairs by vigorously chasing intruding rivals and marking landmarks around the territory with their urine and faeces. The territory may be large enough to hold some young adults, which stay with their parents until they establish their own territories. Jackals may occasionally assemble in small packs, for example, to scavenge a carcass, but they normally hunt either alone or in pairs.

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking/cropping in photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 600mm), aperture f6.4, exposure 1/800 sec, ISO 800 taken from the 4 wheel drive Landcruiser

#Jackal #wildlife #wild #kenya #fuji100to400mm #gamedrive #africa #african #safari #fujixe2#wildlifephotography #naturephotography #naturelovers #naturephotos #nature #conservation #hqspanimals +HQSP Animals curated by +Andy Smith +Nicol Eh +Shannon Adelson #BTPAnimalPRO+BTP Animal Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Annette Junge Daugaard #Animalia (+Animalia) created & managed by +Adelphe BACHELET #PhotoManiaUK +Photo Mania UK curated by +Hans-Juergen Werner +Walli Werner +Janusz Bednarski and +Chandro Ji+G+ Photos Collection
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Armed Guard
When we first arrived at our camp in the middle of nowhere it all felt very imposing. There was a tall electric fence right round the site and guards on the entrance gate. I'm not sure if all this was designed to keep the animals out or us in.

We signed up the day after arrival to go on a walk outside the camp. My initial thoughts were that this would be a little dicey what with all the animals that could potentially eat us. In reality I think the majority of them were more scared of us that we were of them. 15 or so of us walked through the perimeter fence and down onto the banks of the river just below us.

In addition to our guide we took this armed guard with us. He looked like he was out on a Sunday stroll as he lent against this tree which gave us the impression that he'd never had to fire his gun in anger. Our guide said he wouldn't have shot an animal if it had appeared anyway, just warned it away with the noise of his semi automatic rifle. It amused me no end at our naivety about all things safari. We did learn quickly though and laughed at some of our daft preconceived ideas.

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking/cropping in photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 600mm), f8, exposure 1/640 sec, ISO 800

#Kenya #armedguard #travel #travelphotography #portrait #safari #BTPPortraitPro – +BTP Portrait Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Aamir Shahzad
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The Boys
We stopped by the side of the road as one of the Landcruisers had punctured. All the guides stuck together so when one of them got into difficulties the others would come to their assistance and vice versa. It was good to know they were all looking out for each other and ultimately us.

There were small dwellings all along the unmade roads. It didn't seem to matter where we were there was always someone to say hello to. This group of Kenyan boys looked on as we set about changing the deflated tyre. I suppose they saw traffic flying past their home all day long but assumed vehicles rarely stopped. This must have been a novelty especially when a group of pampered tourists got out to stretch their legs!

We gave them some small bits and pieces which they willingly accepted. One cheeky herbert made out he hadn't received anything whilst hiding his stash behind him. Kids are the same the world over :-)

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking/cropping in photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 18-55mm f/2.8-4, aperture f8, exposure 1/680 sec, ISO 800.

#Kenya #theboys #boys #travel #travelphotography #portrait #roadside #BTPPortraitPro+BTP Portrait Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Aamir Shahzad
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Kenyan Market
I thought it remiss of me not to include.... well at least up until this point..... any people shots. Kenya is a vibrant country with colour and movement everywhere. I love visiting places I never been to before. Sure I've seen it on the tv but you're somewhat divorced from the day to day existence of it's inhabitants. Never has an adage been so true as 'travel broadens the mind'.

This is a market somewhere on the road between the nature reserves we travelled to. Don't ask me where. We did a lot of travelling but increasingly found that we really enjoyed this part of our trip as we got to see how Kenyan's went about their daily life. There was always something to see.

#kenya #travel #travelphotography #people #market #kenyanmarket #fujixe2
#people #colour #colourful #BTPStreetPro+BTP Street PRO . owned by +Nancy Dempsey ,curated by +Hans-Juergen Werner
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Nile Croc
This guy was warming himself in the early morning sun. Most of the croc's we saw were of a similar size i.e. 3 or so meters long. We did, however, come across an absolute monster who was laying on a raised river bank shelf. It wasn't until we were almost upon him that we spotted his huge body; thankfully we were in the 4x4! No word of a lie he was 5-6 meters long and could have swallowed us whole!

The Nile crocodile is an opportunistic apex predator and a very aggressive species of crocodile that is capable of taking almost any animal within its range. They are generalists, taking a variety of prey. Their diet consists mostly of different species of fish, reptiles, birds and mammals. They're an ambush predator that can wait for hours, days and even weeks for the suitable moment to attack. They are quite agile and wait for the opportunity for a prey item to come well within attack range. Even swift prey are not immune to attack. Like other crocodiles, Nile crocodiles have an extremely powerful bite that is unique amongst all animals and sharp conical teeth that sink into flesh allowing for a grip that is almost impossible to loosen. They can apply high levels of force for extended periods of time, a great advantage for holding down large prey underwater to drown.

Nile crocodiles are relatively social crocodiles.[ They share basking spots and large food sources, such as schools of fish and big carcasses. There is a strict hierarchy, which is determined by size. Large, old males are at the top of this hierarchy and have primary access to food and the best basking spots.

Crocodiles know their place in the hierarchical order and rarely act against it, and if they do, the results are often very bloody and sometimes even fatal. Like most other reptiles, Nile crocodiles lay eggs; these are guarded by the female. The hatchlings are also protected for a period of time, but hunt by themselves and are not fed by the parents. The Nile crocodile is one of the most dangerous species of crocodile and is responsible for hundreds of human deaths every year. It is a rather common species of crocodile and is not endangered despite some regional declines or extinctions.

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking/cropping in photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 600mm), aperture f8, exposure 1/950 sec, ISO 800.

#Croc #nilecroc #crocodile # #wildlife #wild #kenya #fuji100to400mm #Masaimara#masaimaranationalreserve #Masai #gamedrive #africa #african #safari #fujixe2#wildlifephotography #naturephotography #naturelovers #naturephotos #nature #conservation #hqspanimals +HQSP Animals curated by +Andy Smith +Nicol Eh +Shannon Adelson #BTPAnimalPRO+BTP Animal Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Annette Junge Daugaard #Animalia (+Animalia) created & managed by +Adelphe BACHELET #PhotoManiaUK +Photo Mania UK curated by +Hans-Juergen Werner +Walli Werner +Janusz Bednarski and +Chandro Ji+G+ Photos Collection
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Lion Cub 2
This is another shot of the lion cub from an earlier post. He and his family were feasting on a warthog they'd caught earlier in the day. As you can see his whiskers were red from the blood of the fresh meat. His comatose mother who'd already had her fill was sitting close by.

All the lactating females in a pride suckle cubs showing no favouritism for their own offspring. The reason for this is that each lioness is enhancing her own genes' success by helping to raise her sisters' offspring.

The cubs start to eat meat at about three months and are weaned at about six months. Lionesses stay within the pride all their lives but male lions either leave of their own accord or are driven off by the pride males at two to three years of age. African male lions generally play no paternal role when it comes to provisioning of food to the cubs. The responsibility for training them to hunt is also that of the mother. Male lions will however protect cubs from danger.
Cubs stay with their mothers for about two years, by which stage they have joined the pride's hunting trips. After one to two years of nomadic life these young males drive out the resident males of a pride and take over the females.

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking/cropping in photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 600mm), aperture f8, exposure 1/300 sec, ISO 1000 taken using a monopod.

#lion #lions #lioncub #lioncuns #wildlife #wild #kenya #fuji100to400mm #Masaimara#masaimaranationalreserve #Masai #gamedrive #africa #african #safari #fujixe2#wildlifephotography #naturephotography #naturelovers #naturephotos #nature #conservation #hqspanimals +HQSP Animals curated by +Andy Smith +Nicol Eh +Shannon Adelson #BTPAnimalPRO+BTP Animal Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Annette Junge Daugaard #Animalia (+Animalia) created & managed by +Adelphe BACHELET #PhotoManiaUK +Photo Mania UK curated by +Hans-Juergen Werner +Walli Werner +Janusz Bednarski and +Chandro Ji+G+ Photos Collection #lioncub2
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Yellow Billed Stork
The yellow-billed stork occurs primarily in Eastern Africa, but is widely distributed in areas extending from Senegal and Somalia down to South Africa and in some regions of western Madagascar. During one observation of a mixed species bird colony on the Tana River in Kenya, it was found to be the commonest species there, with 2000 individuals being counted at once.

It does not generally migrate far, at least not out of its breeding range; but usually makes short migratory movements which are influenced by rainfall. It makes local movements in Kenya and has also been found to migrate from North to South Sudan with the rainy season. It may also migrate regularly to and from South Africa. However, little is actually known about this bird’s general migratory movements. Due to apparent observed variation in migratory patterns throughout Africa, the yellow-billed stork has been termed a facultative nomad. It may migrate simply to avoid areas where water or rainfall conditions are too high or too low for feeding on prey. Some populations migrate considerable distances between feeding or breeding sites; usually by using thermals to soar and glide. Other local populations have been found to be sedentary and remain in their respective habitats all year round.

Its preferred habitats include wetlands, shallow lakes and mudflats, usually 10–40 cm deep but it usually avoids heavily forested regions in central Africa. It also avoids flooded regions and deep expansive bodies of water because feeding conditions there are unsuitable for their typical grope and stir feeding techniques.

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking/cropping in photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 406mm), aperture f8, exposure 1/640 sec, ISO 1000 taken resting on a vehicle roof.

#stork #yellowbilledstork #wildlife #wild #kenya #fuji100to400mm #Masaimara#masaimaranationalreserve #Masai #gamedrive #africa #african #safari #fujixe2#wildlifephotography #naturephotography #naturelovers #naturephotos #nature #conservation #BTPBirdPro – +BTP Bird Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey ,curated by +Lynn Wiezycki
#hqspbirds +HQSP Birds curated by +Andy Brown +Dilip Mundkur and +Ian Calland
+Birds GALLERY +Heinrich Wagner +Susan Wilkinson #Animalia (+Animalia) created & managed by +Adelphe BACHELET #PhotoManiaUK +Photo Mania UK curated by +Hans-Juergen Werner +Walli Werner +Janusz Bednarski and +Chandro Ji+G+ Photos Collection
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Body Language
Another shot in the glorious early morning sun. I remember asking Gilbert our guide how he knew this Cape Buffalo wouldn't charge us. His reply was "it's all in the body language". I was glad he could read the signs bearing in mind we were plumb in front of Africa's No 1 people killer.

One of the big five, it is known as "the Black Death" or "widowmaker", and is widely regarded as a very dangerous animal, as it gores and kills over 200 people every year. Buffaloes are sometimes reported to kill more people in Africa than any other animal, although the same claim is also made of hippos and crocodiles.

Other than humans, African Cape buffaloes have few predators and are capable of defending themselves against (and killing) lions. Lions do kill and eat buffalo regularly, and in some regions, the buffaloes are the lions' primary prey. It typically takes several lions to bring down a single adult buffalo, usually the entire pride joins the hunt; however, several incidents have been reported in which lone adult male lions have been able to successfully bring down adult animals.

Original jpeg straight from the camera with minor tweaking/cropping in acr & photoshop. Fuji X-E2 with 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (effective focal length 150mm), aperture f8, exposure 1/160 sec, ISO 800

#capebuffalo   #buffalo #wildlife #wild #kenya #fuji100to400mm #Masaimara #masaimaranationalreserve   #Masai #gamedrive #africa #african #safari #fujixe2 #wildlifephotography   #naturephotography #naturelovers #naturephotos #nature #conservation   #hqspanimals +HQSP Animals curated by +Andy Smith +Nicol Eh +Shannon Adelson #BTPAnimalPRO+BTP Animal Pro . owned by +Nancy Dempsey , curated by +Annette Junge Daugaard #Animalia (+Animalia) created & managed by +Adelphe BACHELET #PhotoManiaUK +Photo Mania UK curated by +Hans-Juergen Werner +Walli Werner +Janusz Bednarski and +Chandro Ji +G+ Photos Collection  #bodylanguage  
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