© Wynand & Claudia du Plessis,  Ingolstadt,  GERMANY

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IMAGES WITH TEXT DESCRIPTIONS

Here are some of our images taken from any of our galleries with an excerpt from a published book or magazine article, or a short description about the circumstances relating to a photo. Some images will have information about what inspirated us to take or create an image, or more about the techniques used to create a photo art or reflection image.

 

Also look at the home page of our other website Photos Namibia where photos with descriptions are added daily.

He flicked his tail nervously. 

 

A dignified female lay beside him and watched calmly as he rose, took the first steps towards us and then accelerated to a full charge within a few seconds. His powerful muscles moved rhythmically. The massive paws kicked up dust and sent small pebbles flying high into the air. His golden and black mane blew about wildly in the wind. Every centimetre of the thoroughly fit and massive body was in motion but for one exception: his ochre-coloured eyes. During the entire charge he kept his piercing gaze fixed on us without blinking even once. His head grew larger with every leap. When his face finally filled the camera’s viewfinder I screamed: “Wynand, GO, GO, GO!!!” 

 

Moments later there was a metallic bang: the lion hit the back of the vehicle with his front paws, and our hearts stopped beating. Then at last, “Lola” our Land Rover, puffing and panting, picked up enough speed and got away. Through the rear window I saw the magnificent prime male lion slowly come to a halt. After throwing a last glance at us, he leisurely returned to his mate and flopped down beside her.

 

Still trembling from the surge of adrenalin and speechless with the intoxicating mixture of excitement and fright, we stopped the car at a safe distance. “Mad Max”, as this lion was named later after he had charged vehicles repeatedly, had clearly shown us that he would not tolerate humans nearby when he was with a female in heat – when “love was in the air”. Gradually we relaxed. At the same time a different feeling, a kind of inner warmth, came over us and began to flow through every cell of our bodies: that of deep awe mixed with great enthusiasm. We felt stunned by the lion’s primeval strength and power. His perfect beauty had touched our very souls.

 

To this day the feelings of awe and enthusiasm remain, spilling over to the numerous other wild creatures that have crossed our paths in the many years of living in Etosha. With each day we have spent in the magic world of the wild these feelings have deepened and grown into an enduring love for Etosha and the countless wonders of nature.  

 

With our photographs and experiences we would like to give you, dear reader, an insider’s understanding of Etosha, hoping that our passion and love for this and other wild places of the world may inspire you too.

 

Extract from our book "Etosha - Rhythms of an African Wildnis" that is now also available as an eBook through our website Wild Photo Shop.

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lion charging etosha namibia claudia du plessis

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"Gentle giants" - Etosha National Park, Namibia

 

I was waiting at a waterhole when these "gentle giants" approached to drink. The leading bull, at least 50cm taller than the other elephants in the herd, was unsure about me, and kept coming closer. I quickly jumped out of the car and sat down to get a photograph from a low angle with a wide angle lens. He was about 8m away, but I could see from his behaviour that he was just curious and not aggressive - Wynand du Plessis.

 

Published in "Terra - Fazination unserer Erde - Heft 1/2003, Zwischen Himmel und Hölle - Nationalparks: Etoscha".

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Elephants running to a waterhole

 

Baby elephants quickly learn to understand their elders' resounding instructions, like the low-pitched rumble that sent this group hurrying towards a nearby water hole - Wynand du Plessis.

 

Extract from the article "Calls in the Wild" by Michael Garstang, published in National Geographic - March 2004.

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Rain shower at sunset in Etosha

 

A spectacular Namibian sunset owes its red blaze to dust that floats in the atmosphere and scatters the fading light. Rumbles, trumpets and screams echo through the twilight - an elephant communication network shapes by shifting patterns of heat and wind - Claudia du Plessis.

 

Extract from the article by "Calls in the Wild" by Michael Garstang, published in National Geographic - March 2004.

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Shades of the Namib

 

The dunes of the Namib Desert are my favourite subjects. For most of the year the sky is clear and the sun burns down mercilessly. Occassionally scattered clouds appear, providing a little shade, but they usually disappear again without bringing the long awaited rains - Claudia du Plessis.

 

Extract from the book "Wildlife Photographer of the Year - Portfolio five". Runner up in the category Wild Places. In association with BBC Wildlife Magazine & The Natural History Museum with British Gas.

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Wildebeest at dusk

 

As part of my research in Etosha National Park, Namibia, I followed a group of wildebeest to observe their feeding and drinking behaviour. At dusk I stepped out of my car to photograph them against the sunset. They turned towards me, snorted and watched - behaviour typical of wildebeest when they first sight a predator - Claudia du Plessis.

 

Extract from the book "Wildlife Photographer of the Year - Portfolio five". Highly commended in the category From Dusk to Dawn. In association with BBC Wildlife Magazine & The Natural History Museum with British Gas.

Social drinking

 

Few photographers work at night in the African bush, mainly because it's dangerous, and also because many national parks don't allow it. But in this case the photographer was living and working in Etosha National Park in Namibia and so was on site to observe the behaviour of animals at night. Black rhinos are normally solitary, but at night, when they usually choose to drink, take the opportunity to socialize. Here two are drinking at a waterhole, their reflections adding to the sense of a relaxed encounter. They greeted each other in a familiar way and stayed relatively close. Today, such a scene is a rare one outside Etosha, as the rapid increase in poaching has caused the black rhino to be listed as critically endangered.

 

Extract from the book "50 Years of Wildlife Photographer of the Year - how wildlife photography became art" that is now also available from the Natural History Museum.

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