By Mark McConville
IT’S A LOTTERY for these huge wildebeest every time they undertake the great migration as these stunning pictures show one unfortunate animal being snatched by a crocodile.
The incredible images show the panicked herd rushing to get across the river as they know predators lurk in the water.
Other actions shots show wildebeest jumping from the land into the river to get a head start, a crocodile about to snatch his dinner and the scaly predator poking his head above the water.
The striking photographs were taken in Maasai Mara Kenya, Africa, by author John L Crawley (56), from Provo, Utah, USA.
“The Wildebeest’s life is a constant migration as they follow the grasses throughout central Africa,” he said.
“Along the way there are countless struggles. They are one of the major food resources for most predators. Fire, water crossings, starvation, exhaustion, and other factors shape their lives as well.
“One of the epic moments of their migration is the need to cross the Mara River. Here they gather, hesitant to cross, knowing there is danger in the water, not only from the strong currents, but crocodiles as well.
“Once a lead animal begins, they all surge into the water in a frantic attempt to cross as quickly as possible.”
The Great Wildebeest Migration – the annual migration of giant herds of grazers across Northern Tanzania and Kenya is a truly spectacular event. Over two million wildebeest, zebras and gazelles move through the Serengeti and Masai Mara ecosystems in search of green pasture, in a regular pattern.
Wildebeest typically inhabit the Serengeti plains of southeastern Africa. For most of their lives, wildebeest graze in the grassy savannas and open woodlands of the plains, which straddle the nations of Tanzania and Kenya. More than 1.5 million wildebeest migrate in an enormous loop every year.
“This is real “run and gun” photography at times and others it may be a waiting game,” added John.
“You always need to be ready to take advantage of the situation at hand. I enjoy the rush and excitement that goes with this style of photography.
“All life is a balance and needs to be respected. You can’t remove or alter a small part without upsetting the rest of things.
“To see this event in person is amazing! It was hard to keep focused on photography.”
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