Warthog, Kruger National Park, South Africa

NOVEMBER 2011 – A warthog stands in the green grass of the Kruger National Park, South Africa. © Mark Zanzig/zanzig.com


The story behind the image

When you’re going on safari, be prepared to get up early. Not only is the sunlight much softer in the morning, you may also encounter animals that are rather shy and avoid the huge visitor streams.

Our early start into the day was rewarded by this shot of a warthog. It’s quite rare to see one as there were just about 3,800 warthogs in the park. Here’s a comparision of the animal numbers of the “Big Five”:

SpeciesApprox. Animal Numbers (2003)
Rhinocerosvery few
Leopard1,000
Lion1,500
Warthog3,800
Elephant11,700
Buffalo32,000

The photo shows green bushes in the back. That’s because the rainy season had just begun, turning the grass and bushes into vivid green. As nice as this may look, it makes spotting animals more difficult, especially when they move beyond the second or third row of bushes from your location. They become more or less invisible. Also, during rainy season they tend to find enough natural water holes in the park and won’t show as often at the water holes near the main gravel roads.

So, we were very pleased to encounter this warthog right after leaving the camp.


The high resolution image

Capture Date & Time24-NOV-2011, 07:06
LocationKruger National Park, South Africa
CameraCanon EOS-1D Mark III
LensCanon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM
ISO800
Exposure1/640 sec at f/6.3
Digital Image Source FormatCanon Camera RAW (CR2)
Edited Image FormatJPEG, 24 bits/pixel, sRGB
Edited Image Dimensions3888 x 2592 Pixels
Copyright© by Mark Zanzig/zanzig.com

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