Thursday, December 27, 2012

Bull Elelphant- Amboseli Kenya

Well that's a wrap for 2012 everyone! For me it's been a good year- hope your's has been as well. Amy & I look forward to spending more time in the bush in 2013 (bound to be less rain & more flying...) and to bring you bigger, better and bolder Pic-a-Days!  Back from Watamu Jan 4th. Thanks for all the support. elk

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Friday, December 21, 2012

Grey Heron- Amboseli Kenya

A Grey Heron- slightly iridescent when seen up close. This one was patrolling the swamp in Amboseli looking for snakes, frogs, insects.....

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Moonflower- Mt. Kenya

This was taken with my camera phone near Mt. Kenya. The Moonflower- AKA Datura- is rather infamous. From Wikipedia:

Due to the potent combination of anticholinergic substances it contains, Datura intoxication typically produces effects similar to that of an anticholinergic delirium (as contrasted to hallucination): a complete inability to differentiate reality from fantasy; hyperthermia; tachycardia; bizarre, and possibly violent behavior; and severe mydriasis with resultant painful photophobia that can last several days. Pronounced amnesia is another commonly reported effect.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

White-Browed Robin-chat- Nairobi Kenya

One of my favourite back-yard birds, the Robin-chat (a Thrush) is a master songster with very individual and varied whistled tunes- real melodies that help mark it's vigorously defended territory.

Monday, December 17, 2012

African Fish Eagle- Lake Baringo Kenya

A Lake Baringo African Fish Eagle with tilapia. The Tugen Hills loom in the background, part of the Great Rift Valley escarpment- altitude up to 8500ft (2600m). Lake Baringo's altitude is 2850ft (870m)

Friday, December 14, 2012

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Green-Headed Sunbird- Nairobi Kenya

This Green-Headed Sunbird is a very territorial resident of my forested yard here in Nairobi. And yes- the head CAN look sort of green(ish) in the right light......

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Baby Colobus- Mt. Kenya

Very young Colobus are called 'whiteys' for obvious reasons.... Notice the long & powerful fingers, which compensates for the lack of opposable thumb, unusual in primates.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Colubus Monkey- Mt. Kenya

A Trout-Tree Colobus. The background blurring is called 'bokeh' and happens (in this case deliberately) by shooting with a large (wide open) aperture to create a narrow plane of focus- aka depth of field. Generally, the better the lens the better the bokeh. To get this effect with a point-and-shoot camera, try setting on the portrait mode. The scenery mode will usually do the opposite, providing a greater depth of field.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Takaungu Creek, Kenya Coast.

That was a nice mini Holiday! Back in Nairobi now.  This is Takaungu creek mouth (HERE) just north of the place we stayed at.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Black Rhino- Nairobi Park, Kenya

Here's that male Black Rhino again- the fighter. See the punctures? It's amazing that they can survive a serious duel with those horns...

Monday, November 19, 2012

Male Black Rhino- Nairobi Park, Kenya

Met this guy this weekend in Nairobi Park. A Black Rhino & he's a fighter. I'll show you his recent wounds tomorrow. Wickedly sharp horn, eh?

Friday, November 16, 2012

African Darter- Lake Baringo Kenya

This African Darter is drying itself atop a flooded tree in a mixed nesting colony of Darters, Egrets and Cormorants along the shores of Lake Baringo.There's plenty of action in the shallows below as well, with crocs cruising for chicks fallen from the nests and tilapia fish swarming for the obviously delectable bird feces...

Monday, November 12, 2012

Amethyst Sunbird at Nest- Nairobi Kenya

A male Amethyst Sunbird at it's nest in a Brown Olive tree, Nairobi. Took patience to capture this shot, as both male & females flitted to & from the nest with insects for their young. Sunbirds don't hover like hummingbirds, and they don't stay still for long!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Hadada Ibis, Lake Naivasha Kenya

A ruffled & freshly preened Hadada Ibis from Lake Naivasha. Possibly the loudest most discordantly raucous bird in my neighborhood! Capable of unbelievable decibel levels.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Young White Rhino- Nairobi Park, Kenya

A playful young White Rhino from Nairobi Park. The name is derived from the Afrikaans word 'wyd' for 'wide'- descriptive of the wide mouth adapted for grazing. The Black Rhino browses more, with a narrow prehensile upper lip designed to selectively feed on leaves.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Bougainvillea Flower- Naivasha Kenya

Bougainvillea, native to South America, occur throughout East Africa as ornamentals. Normally bright pink, red, & purple, I found this unusual orange-brown plant in Naivasha the other day.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Common Eland- Masai Mara Kenya

The Common Eland (Taurotragus oryx), averaging between 500 - 600 kg, is the second largest antelope- after it's big cousin the Giant Eland (central & western Africa) which can attain 750kg. Despite their weight, eland are some of the best jumpers- clearing 2.1m (7ft) with ease.

Monday, November 5, 2012

African Harrier Hawk

A rather large hawk for the job- the African Harrier Hawk flies at low level through thick forest and is primarily a nest-robber. This photo from Lake Baringo.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Cheetah & Young- Masai Mara Kenya

Hot sun can be a problem for young cheetahs who often stay in open grasslands while mother is off hunting. The light coloured mane helps insulate & camouflage, but it's good to get a bit of belly-shade when available!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Pied Kingfisher- Lanke Baring, Kenya

A Pied Kingfisher from Lake Baringo. One of the most common bird species there, feeding almost exclusively on the abundant small tilapia fish.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Lake Baringo- Kenya

Water levels continue to rise in all the Rift Valley lakes- including Baringo. This house on a small islet next to Kokwe Island will soon be uninhabitable.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Vervet Monkey- Naivasha Kenya

It certainly seems a life of leisure for this Vervet from 'Little Lake' just off Lake Naivasha (HERE). He's the dominant male of the troupe.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Monday, October 22, 2012

Yellow-Billed Stork- Lake Nakuru

Like the Ibis, the Yellow-Billed stork probes the muddy bottoms of shoreline shallows in freshwater lakes, feeding on whatever lives in such places- snails, worms, small fish etc.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Cape Buffalo- Nairobi Park, Kenya

A prize bull Cape Buffalo- not the sort of fellow you'd like to meet face-to-face when on foot in the bush. This one lives in the Nairobi Park.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Long-Tailed Widowbird, Lake Nakuru Kenya

The Long-Tailed Widowbird's courtship plumage proves particularly non-aerodynamic. Females are a quarter of the male's tail-inclusive length, are streaked brown & black & have no problems flying...