The tongue of a giraffe

Giraffes have wonderfully long tongues to reach the farthest leaves on a tree. Did you known that a giraffe’s tongue can reach 50 cm? This giraffe was licking the salt stone at Pilanesberg Center, and felt the need to stick his tongue out at us!

Poor baby elephant

Life can be so cruel… This little elephant had been left alone by his family in Pilanesberg, and was wandering alone for a while, visibly getting weaker. This photo was taken this morning at Lengau Dam. When we drove past a second time, it was lying in the bush.

Later today a vet examined the poor little fellow, and discovered that he had a big lump in his throat. It was to deep for the vet to reach, and it obviously prevented the elephant from eating. The decision was taken to put him down. In the autopsy it was discovered that he had a big tree root stuck in his throat – a freak accident, one could say.

What a sad day!

Newborn springbok drinking

In some ways, it was a sad week in Pilanesberg National Park. A black rhino calf was killed by lions; a young cheetah was killed by a leopard; and a young elephant died after a tree root became stuck in its throat.

But the circle of life means that there is more than sadness in nature. We saw this newborn springbok lamb drinking his mother’s milk, ready to start a new life. Let’s hope it will be long and happy!

Little family

A family of lion-tailed maqaques in the National Zoological Gardens in Pretoria. Mommy was holding her baby when daddy came along to have a look at his offspring. Mommy allowed a brief touch and then went on to sit somewhere else with her young. Safety first!

Elephant on black

In the Netherlands, ‘blackfoto’ is a huge trend, especially in horse photography, but in zoo photography as well. I love the moodiness of the black background and the way in which it brings forward the few lights on the subject.

Elephant photographed in Madikwe Game Reserve.