Harriet Smith Photography


"For The Love of Africa"

AFRICAN SAFARIS - Trips Of A Lifetime

Taking Over The Pride

Country: Botswana                                            
Location: Okavango Delta               
Reserve: Selinda Game Reserve 
Camp: Selinda

Taking Over The Pride

This is a picture of a handsome young male making another attempt to dominate this male-less small pride of young females, but they want nothing to do with him and prepare to drive him off again.  This encounter began early in the morning and has followed many miles of the dry grass channel. The male has pursued boldly at times and with great stealth at other times.  Multiple dust-ups, as is about to happen again, have occurred several times as he has moved in too close.

The young male on the left wants no part in the upcoming encounter and is prepared once again to run, only to return as the male breaks off his attempt once more. The pursuer will eventually win, and the young male will be driven off. The African "Circle of Life" repeating itself one more time.

The setting for this encounter can be described as nothing short of spectacular: A huge, gnarled, old, dead tree trunk atop an ancient, worn termite mound in the middle of the dried savannah. Then the amazing sky above the tree line.
This picture was taken at the Selinda Game Reserve.  The 320,000-acre private Selinda Game Reserve, located to the northeast of the Okavango Delta, is characterized by its game rich floodplains straddling the Selinda Spillway, linking the Okavango Delta and the Linyanti Swamps, waterways and savannahs in northern Botswana. The Selinda Spillway is like no other. It is a river that can flow in two directions, depending on where the water levels are the highest. In most years it flows in both directions with water pushing 'up' from the Linyanti waterways and also 'down' from the west, fed by the waters of the Okavango Delta. The Linyanti River later becomes the Chobe River.

Many varied habitats are within the Selinda Reserve -- marshes, waterways, riverine forests, dry woodlands and wide dry grasslands dotted with small 'islands' of palm forest as far as the eye can see. Selinda is a derivative meaning "many small pools of water" in the Khoesan language of northern Botswana.

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