Fall 2013 Photo Safari – Trip Report, Day 7

by Dave Burns | Posted in Trip Reports | Tags: , ,
Leopard on Branch , Serengeti NP, Tanzania
Leopard on Branch, Serengeti NP, Tanzania
1/640 at f/5.6, ISO 400

Each day I make a plan with my guides. Sometimes that works out and sometimes not. You can’t predict wildlife. Today I wanted to look for leopards. Although we left camp in the early morning to an incredible sunrise, we had a slow start but by the time we got back to camp for lunch, I had had one of my best leopard sightings. It started when we spotted two playing together. We thought they were a mating pair but soon realized it was a mother with an almost full-grown male cub. We tracked them for a while until they came to a tree and both climbed up to rest on the branches. One of them climbed all the way to the canopy and soon we saw why: they had been keeping a Thomson’s gazelle there.

The mother came down and gave a half-hearted attempt to hunt some gazelles but then went walking north. After tracking her for another 20 minutes, she surprised us by heading back to the tree with another male cub. We followed them back and, after walking right under our vehicle windows, soon we had three leopards in the tree with great light on them. We stayed for another 30 minutes, trying different compositions and capturing different poses, then it was back to the camp for a well-earned lunch.


About Dave Burns

Dave Burns is a wildlife, travel, and landscape photographer whose passions range from the beauty of the African savanna to the streets of Paris. He created Dave Burns Photo Tours to share his favorite places with other photographers, help them capture unique images, and learn more about photography and digital work flow. His next trip is an African photo safari to the Serengeti in February 2021. Dave’s images are in private collections and galleries. To contact him, use the contact page on this site.

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