Battle on the Topi Plains pt 1

These images were taken back in February 2017 on our annual trip to the Masai Mara.

Ntuala our Masai guide led us to this Eland kill on the Topi plains where we were greeted by the whole Mdomo pride including the pride males Lipstick and Blackie.

The pride had killed the Eland bull in the night and were well fed by the time we arrived.

The lions had stripped the carcass of all the most nutritious meat and left just the stomach lining and intestines in which the brave Jackels would steal avoiding mock charges from mainly the two young males.

Looming in the background a large clan of Hyenas massed calling each other trying to intimidate the young males to the point where one Lioness and Lipstick came to the aid  and charged the Hyenas.

One hour later the Lions well fed left the carcass to the mercy of the Hyenas in which part two i photographed.

This was an amazing time to watch the dynamics of two major rivals in the animal kingdom competing for food.

A huge thank you to Ntuala our Masai guide working for Governors camp.A fantastic guide who loves the Animals and proud to be Masai.His knowledge,where to position the Land rover that was not intrusive to the animals and great for us photographers was fantastic.

I used a Canon 7d mk 2. 100-400mm Canon lens with polarising filter.

Coming soon the Hyenas in part two.

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Paradise Pride

The Paradise Pride in the Masai Mara as from March 2017 has four pride males known in the Mara as the four Musketeers,six lionesses and many cubs at various ages.They have now split into two groups,some have crossed the Mara river and gone into the Trans Mara,and the other group are south near the main crossing point.

I had the pleasure of photographing this Pride in March 2017 on various occasions,my highlight being them feeding on a young Hippo kill near the crossing point.

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Madomo Pride, part 1

Earlier this year i had the privilege to photograph this pride in their home range on the Southern Topi plains and as far as Malima Tatu.

With two of the most impressive blacked mane males in the mara this group has grown strong with ten young lions,ages between five months and one year.Four powerful lionesses including one of my favorites Shingu.

With Blackie and Lipstick in their later years i do feel a pride takeover will not be far away.I do hope to see them in 2018 as they symbolize the African Male lion to me. I

used a Canon 7d mk2, 1-400mm is-usm Canon tele photo lens,polarising filter.

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The Marsh Pride Pt 1

These images were taken during March 2017

I have watched and photographed this famous pride since 2011 and have seen the highs and lows,the lowest being the illegal killing of two of the three graces ,Bebe, Sienna by Masai Herdsmen.

The highs for me being able to see White eye during her final yrs,and watching Red and Tatu grow and mature before leaving the Marsh to find their own territory.

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Marsh Lioness Charm

Charm was born in the Musiara Marsh area of the Masai Mara in 2003.Born into the Famous Marsh Pride she soon splintered off into a satellite group known during the B.B.C. series Big Cat diaries as the Three Graces  [ Charm-Joy-sienna  ]

Charm is the daughter of Red,a great hunter of times past.She returned back to the main pride in 2010 and now is the oldest lioness in the pride at fourteen,a good age for lioness,and still going strong.

Kit used

Canon 7d mk 2

100-400 Canon is,usm Telephoto lens

Standard Hoya polarising filter.

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The Paradise Pride, Scar, Morani

These are images of two of the four Paradise pride males who are known in the Masai Mara as the Musketeers,scar being the most famous.However there are four in this pride,Msikio,and Hunter who were on the other side of the Mara river.

Since 2011 when the Musketeers kicked out Claude,and Romeo from the Marsh Pride, they have been a dominant force in the Mara and hold several prides.They vacated the Marsh and settled mainly in the Triangle side of the Mara but occasionally are seen on the Paradise side of the Mara river.

The Musketeers abandoned the the Marsh because Masai herdsman were illegally grazing cattle leading to the eventual pointless deaths of Sienna,Bebe,and Ron by poisoning.I feel that they felt safer in the Triangle as there would be less encroachment by humans.

Kit- Canon 7d mark2 ,100-400 Canon is usm tele photo lens

Taken at various focal lengths,spot metered,f.5.6,various iso parameters below 1000.

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Lipstick And Blackie , Madomo Pride males

In my opinion the most impressive black mained males in the Mara at the moment.

How long they hold their territory for we will wait and see as they are 12yr old plus,old for pride males.I hope they are still there next year as over the years i have grown to love these charismatic and powerful lions.

My images were taken with a Canon 7d mk 2, 400mm  is,usm Canon lens with standand grad filter.Various iso parameters trying to keep it below 2000,less graining.With the sun set so high during the heat of day photography can be tricky.

I hope i have done these boys justice with these images.

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The Marsh Pride Males 2017

These are a series of images of Jambo and Karibu the new Marsh males,taken in the heart of their territory,the Musiara Marsh, Masai Mara.

This year i had the privilege to photograph three Mara prides,the first of which the most famous of them all;the Marsh Pride.

2016 had been a disastrous year for the pride with the loss of two iconic lionesses Bebe and Sienna,Poisoned by Masai herdsmen illegally grazing cattle on the national park.After an international outcry the two men were caught and sent to prison.

The pride had splintered for a while,with the Musketeers,four males leaving the Marsh to cross the river to expand territory the Marsh Pride needed to regroup, and that they have with these two young strong males.

My photographic kit consisted of a Canon 7d mk2 camera, 400mm i.s.usm Canon lens with standard polarizing filter.iso 1000,spot metered,various focal lengths with great light.

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Musiara Marsh sunrise

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Masai Mara 2016

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Marsh pride female relaxing near Governors camp

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Red, young marsh male near Bila Shaka lugga
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Miti Mbili pride male Blackie relaxing near Topi Plains

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Blackie

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Yaya, Marsh pride lioness
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Yaya,s cub taking a ride near Bila shaka

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Marsh pride male Morani near the Mara river on Paradise plains
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Red,Marsh male
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Yaya,s young cub suckling near Bila Shaka
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Yaya

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Playtime for the Marsh Pride cubs at Bila Shaka

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Tatu,brother of Red, Marsh male at Bila Shaka

Masai Mara 2015

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Young Marsh pride Male near the drainage ditch just outside Governors camp
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Marsh pride female at Bila Shaka
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Marsh pride female having a knap near the Hippo pools in the Marsh
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Playtime in the Marsh
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Marsh male Tatu being groomed in the Marsh

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A Mature male spotted  near Aitong hill
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Young male spotted in the Olare Orak area

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Young Marsh male in the Marsh

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Marsh male Red in the marsh
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Morani, Marsh pride male taken on Paradise Plains

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Marsh Pride feeding on a dead Buffalo in the Marsh area

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Tatu,young Marsh Pride male

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