Walking with lions was a great experience. I was high after it was over. The lions are accustomed to being with humans. Their trainer keeps them focused on a chunk of meat on the end of a long pointed stick while they are waiting to be touched. The speed at which the lions can grab that tidbit of food is astonishing. These are truly wondrous creatures. What also struck me was how much affection these two lions had for each other. They were not fully grown. The male massed 150 kg and is expected to reach 260 kg. Later that day I drove back to Capetown, and began my long trip back to the USA the next afternoon.
On the game reserve where I was staying we went out for three hour game drives in a four wheel drive truck which had seats mounted in the bed. There was a cover overhead to block the sun but the truck was open on the sides. In theory, anything could have jumped in though the animals stay back because they see the truck as a monolithic large creature that is too big to attack.
The Rhino’s horn has been cut to prevent poachers from killing it for its horn. It is believed consumption of Rhino horns will result in their extinction soon.
Monkeyland is a primate sanctuary near Plettenberg Bay, South Africa. The animals are sourced from zoos and unwanted pets. None are captured for the park and the primates roam free. The species have been chosen to get along with each other. They are fed at multiple feeding stations to avoid territoriality and conflict. A fence keeps predators out of the roughly 25 acre park. It’s a great life.
These photos were captured at about 6:30 AM local time in the golden light of morning at a game reserve near Mossel Bay, South Africa. Range was about 10 meters and there were no barriers between me and the lions. After seeing Lions up close in their natural environment I have come to believe they are the most beautiful of all wild animals.
What is the difference between a baboon and a wind surfer? The wind surfer is less likely to try and break into your car. This is the place where the Indian and Atlantic oceans meet. Funny, but I could not find the line in the water. I photographed the baboons from too close for safety. They were running around wild in the street.
These photos are from a shark diving trip which launched from the Gansbaai area. Shark Diving Unlimited ran the trip professionally. On the boat there is a steel cage so the sharks can be viewed at water level or slightly below by divers. The water was cold and the sea was rough, so I did not last very long in the cage. These are Great White sharks which are nearly extinct.