It’s been too long since I’ve participated in Ailsa’s travel theme posts. This week the topic is Dry. Enjoy these images from southern Africa. I was there for three months a couple years ago, at a time that straddled the end of the dry and beginning of the wet seasons. My better desert landscapes are from the American Southwest, but these show the real impact of dry.
It was amazing the sense of anticipation among the animals (and also people) as they awaited the rains. It is for many of them a time of life and death, a time of anxiety. This is especially true with respect to their young. Most animals there have babies not long before the wet season. Then they have to wait out the worst days, the end of the dry season while watching their young suffer. Maybe it’s a way for them to make sure the young are strong, I don’t know.
If you are interested in any of these images (copyrighted and not available for free download), please click on them. If you have any questions or specific requests, please contact me. Enjoy and thanks for looking!
A lone wildebeest stands watching the wet season’s first storm sweep into the Mbabe Depression of Botswana. No rain came at first, only wind and incredible dust. A moment after I shot this, the wildebeest ran for shelter.
A clump of grass grows at the base of an enormous orange dune in Namibia’s Namib Desert.
A large female African elephant shades her baby from the hot direct sun during one of the hottest days of the year in Botswana’s Chobe National Park.
Standing snags of camel thorn trees trace a dry watercourse in Namibia. Mountain-sized dunes of the Namib Desert lie in the background.
Ostriches seemed to be most abundant in the dry grasslands of Namibia.
During their incredible migration into the Makgadikgadi Pans of Botswana, a zebra mom uses her tail to brush insects away from her foal.
A desert plated lizard in the dunes of the Namib desert uses its armored head to dig quickly into the sand.
Plants adapted to dry conditions grow very slowly, but it’s hard to beat the ancient Welwitschia of Namibia. Some are well over 2000 years old.
The long horns and large ears are characteristic features of the gemsbok, an antelope superbly adapted to the arid regions of Africa.
This lioness in Botswana’s Kalahari Desert is preserving her energy during an incredibly hot day in order to hunt (the above animal) in the relative cool of the evening. Wish I had as good an excuse to be lazy!
Namibia’s Skeleton Coast is by far the driest, most empty place I’ve been, an extremely arid shore with plenty of shipwrecks.
Anyone who has spent a lot of time in deserts knows about the annoying, dry thing that happens inside your nose. This giraffe in the Kalahari has the solution!
Then he seemed to smile mockingly at me for having far too short a tongue!
A mirage of a lake appears on Namibia’s Skeleton Coast.
Sunset in the dunes of the Namib Desert.