Readers’ wildlife photographs

We’re nearing the end of the photos that Benjamin Taylor sent from his trip to southern Africa last year, but they remain wonderful. Here are a few more (his captions are indented):

Red-billed oxpecker (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) resting on the neck of a Namibian giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis angolensis):




John Harshman recently sent oxpecker photos as well (here).

Plains zebra (Equus quagga), Chobe National Park, Botswana:


African leopard (Panthera pardus pardus), Chobe National Park, Botswana:


The kori bustard (Ardeotis kori), the heaviest flying species of bird:


Silhouette of a marabou stork (Leptoptilos crumenifer):


Sunset over the Chobe River:


 Greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros), Chobe National Park, Botswana:


African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana), Chobe National Park, Botswana:




  1. Posted September 26, 2016 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    Beautiful photos!

    I’m still puzzling over where to go in southern/eastern Africa (in the relatively near future).

    Right now, it’s between Zambia (ahead for now due to the proximity of Victoria Falls) and Botswana.

    • Johnman
      Posted September 26, 2016 at 8:14 am | Permalink

      Just for info – If you visit Kasane (Chobe National Park) in Botswana – easy day trips can be taken to Victoria Falls.

      • John Harshman
        Posted September 26, 2016 at 9:28 am | Permalink

        That’s just what I did. Start in Maun, end at Kasane, and a couple of days across the border in Zimbabwe. Worked quite well.

        And you really don’t want to miss the Okavango Delta.

      • Posted September 26, 2016 at 11:00 am | Permalink


  2. John Harshman
    Posted September 26, 2016 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    Nice pictures. Now you can compare the two oxpecker species. Notice the yellow eye-ring on these birds. I do wonder if the yellow on the face has something to do with sexual selection (mutual in this case, as the sexes look the same), whether it’s on the bill or the eye.

  3. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted September 26, 2016 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    Very nice. I would really really like to do a safari in Africa one day.

    • Posted September 26, 2016 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      Indeed. Two for me so far and going back pretty soon.

  4. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted September 26, 2016 at 10:02 am | Permalink


    Why the hell would anyone shoot these animals with anything but a camera nowadays – but if they read WEIT, there could be hope.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted September 26, 2016 at 11:11 am | Permalink

      The number one killers of elephants for ivory are Islamist terrorists. It’s how groups like Al-Shabaab fund themselves. That’s why the killing has increased so much in the last ten years.

      As for hunting these animals for “sport,” I’ve never been able to see the attraction either. It’s simply trophy hunting and makes me think the killer feels extremely inadequate in some way. (And no, not necessarily his dangly bits if it’s a man. There are plenty of other things to feel inadequate about.)

  5. keith cook +/-
    Posted September 26, 2016 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    In the second photo down of the Namibian giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis angolensis) as I was just checking out the eye shape in close up, you can see an open wound close to it’s ear.
    The Red-billed oxpecker (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) perched on the back of the head is about to partake in a little blood snack perhaps?

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