I don’t really know what it takes to get a good wildlife shot, but I like this one shot off of a boat while on safari in Botswana.
While cruising the river in search of wildlife, on our shaded, covered motor boat, we came across these fishermen working hard in the heat of the sun. It’s no wonder they’ve stripped off. They were quite a distance away so I couldn’t really tell what they were doing until I got my big telephoto lens on.
I definitely would not want to be standing waist deep in that water. It wasn’t very far from here that we came across a crocodile with a freshly killed impala in its jaws.
They’re very careful about taking care of nature in Botswana. Looking across the river to Namibia, you could see a stark difference in the way that each country had decided to use the land. Botswana has set up nature reserves, making their income from taking tourists on safaris. Just across the river, Namibia has transformed the other bank into large swaths of farmland.
As we waited to go on our boat safari in Botswana, the waiting area of our safari operators filled with Japanese tourists. When we were told to head to the boat we managed to take off in front of the crowd. When we saw the boat we noticed it was a double decker and decided we definitely wanted to secure a spot up top. Unfortunately, they’d reserved the upper deck for the tour group so that they could all hear the translator. As a result, we were stuck with the bottom. As it turned out, we were the only three on the bottom. Apart from getting hit in the head by a lens cap dropped from the upper deck, it was actually great. It was like we had our own private boat and guide for a few hours.
I snapped this shot from the lower deck, of a mama hippo and her baby.
We’d come through rain, a lot of rain, to get to this spot. Soaking wet, pools of water collected in my guide-provided poncho. We came round a corner to discover about twenty giraffe, spread across a broad flat landscape. I carefully pulled my camera from beneath he puddle-filled poncho, spilling water all over my travel buddies in the process, and began to fire away.
When I saw these two giraffe, I knew exactly what I wanted. Both of them with their heads up, pointing towards the center of the photo. I didn’t actually manage to get this in the same photo. So when it came to producing this image, I wound up using two sets of bracketed photos. So I had two with regular exposure, two at -2 and two at +2.
I used Photomatix’s ghosting removal tool to pick the images of each giraffe I wanted and voila, the image I had in my head in Africa was now on my screen in Bermuda.
We spotted this guy on our way to safari in Botswana’s Chobe National Park. We were driving along a paved road prior to turning off onto the dirt tracks we’d spend the next few hours exploring. All of a sudden, the paved road became lined by elephants, munching away, not the least bit bothered by all the cars driving past.
As we struck out on river safari on our first morning in Botswana, I noticed the light fluffy clouds forming out on the horizons, framing the bright blue sky. When we came across these two safari boats parked up against an island, I took the opportunity to get a picture of the clouds in the background. Little did I know that these clouds were a sign of the rain that was going to lead to a miserable afternoon on the back of a safari truck. Well, it wasn’t so miserable for me. As I’m such a gentleman, I’d let the girls I was with take the two outside seats on the safari truck while I sat in the middle seat. When the rain began to fall, I was fairly well sheltered and warm sandwiched between the two of them. They, on the other hand, were regularly hit by the water crashing down from the canvas covering on the top of our open sided safari truck. When we arrived at camp, they were both soaked to the skin.