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This Week At Angama #145

While it may have been a quiet week in the Mara Triangle in terms of visitor numbers, the plains are healthy, vibrant and bursting with life, as discovered by Angama's head guide, Sammy Komu
A leopard rests in a tall tree in the golden morning light

It has certainly been an eventful year for mankind – the pandemic seems to have brought normal life to a halt, while the US election kept us glued to our screens. Yet despite it all, the Mara and her wild residents have remained completely unperturbed by these events.

One of these rocks is a little different from the others f 5.6, 1/320, ISO 320, 0.0
A python scans its surroundings before making a swift escape f 5.6, 1/1250, ISO 320, 0.0

The rainy season is upon us, with afternoon showers now an almost guaranteed event. The daily deluge has provided me with an opportunity to not only concentrate on big game, but also the beauty of the smaller creatures found in the Mara - like this little terrapin trying to blend in with the surrounding rocks hoping we wouldn't spot it.

Also trying to disguise itself in a marshy area, which are now scattered across the Mara, was a beautiful rock pythons. We were lucky to capture a quick image before it disappeared into the long grass.

A hammerkop hunts for fish and frogs f 5.0, 1/400, ISO 100, 0.0
A saddle-billed stork wades in a marshland in search of its next meal f 5.6, 1/1250, ISO 400, 0.0

The wet season brings with it lots of frog activity which is a boon for the likes of the hamerkop. One particular fellow waited patiently for a tasty morsel to get washed downstream, while a nearby saddle-billed stork selected a better hunting spot and was rewarded with a mudfish for his clever choice of location.

An old buffalo cools off in a muddy pond f 5.0, 1/1250, ISO 400, 0.0

There is no rain without the heat. The constant fluctuation of temperature and the resulting precipitation helps create mud pools which are a favourite for the Cape buffalo looking for respite from the intensity of the day’s sun.

Few zebra and wildebeest remain in the Triangle after the departure of the mega herds f 5.6, 1/4000, ISO 400, 0.0

The Migration is all but over, though the Mara is dotted with the few zebras and wildebeests that were left behind. Having moved away from the main river, they now have no choice but to quench their thirst by drinking from the little pools they come across – a risk that often has them paying the ultimate price.

All in a day’s work…one of the Inselberg males had a satisfying day on all fronts f 5.6, 1/800, ISO 200, 0.0

One of the magnificent Inselberg males managed to bring down a wildebeest while it was drinking from one such pool. Despite the energy he exerted, he still managed to muster up some enthusiasm to please his female before finally dozing off under a tree.

An olive baboon f 5.0, 1/1600, ISO 200, 0.0
Deep in thought f 5.6, 1/800, ISO 200, 0.0

I’ve always found olive baboons to be fascinating and funny creatures. An opinion reinforced by this sub-adult male who seemed to be deep in thought and couldn't have cared less about my presence nor proximity.

Romy the leopard surveys the landscape from a quintessential advantage point f 5.6, 1/50, ISO 400, 0.0

The late afternoon light in the Mara is without a doubt one of the most magnificent things you can experience, and it was made that much more incredible for me with this sighting of Romy, a young leopard, up on a tree branch basking in the gentle, fading warmth. Thanks to minimal vehicles at this particular sighting, she was brave enough to let me stay close as she relaxed and watched yet another day in the Mara come to satisfying end.

This Week A Year Ago

Photograph by Adam Bannister f 5.0, 1/4000, ISO 500 -0.33

A year ago, an Owino Pride female failed to bring down an adult warthog but half an hour after her first attempt she tried again and succeeded with a somewhat smaller reward.

Filed under: This Week at Angama

Tagged with:

Angama Mara , Lions of the Mara , Maasai Mara , Mara Triangle , Photographic Safari , Wildlife Photography

About: Sammy Komu

Angama's head guide Sammy grew up close to Mount Kenya. Being farmers his family had frequent visitors to their garden at night – namely elephant. He has since loved elephants and all wild animals, a passion that has led him to a very rewarding career in guiding.

Browse all articles by Sammy Komu Meet the angama team

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