Wildlife Photography Blog - for news, views and articles on wildlife, conservation, photography, and safari destinations. © Scotch Macaskill

Scotch Macaskill's Wildlife Blog

IMPORTANT: Please note that from April 2009 this Blog's Web address changed as a result of a switch in the blogging platform we use. It's still an integral part of the Wildlife Pictures Online website and, we hope, will continue providing entertaining and enjoyable content in the form of wildlife images, news, views and information.

For the most recent posts, links, and other resources, please visit the new Wldlife Photography Blog.

Today's Picture: Elephant Pastel
August 2, 2007
Elephant pastel

The above artwork, titled "In his Father's footsteps", is an original pastel on colourfix by Leigh Rust. The size of the original is 470mm x 760mm.

Leigh is an award-winning Australian artist who works in soft pastel "to create highly detailed portrayals of the most fascinating and exciting animals on the planet".

Young elephant walking

His passion for the conservation of wildlife prompted Leigh to found the Untamed Artist Network, a collection of wildlife artists from across the globe who promote awareness and raise funds for wildlife conservation.

Through the sale of their work, participating artists raise much needed funds for zoos and animal welfare organizations, "helping to ensure that future generations will be able to marvel at, and learn from these magnificent creatures".

As a reference for his pastel, Leigh used a photograph (right) that I took in the Tulii Block area of Botswana.

You can see more of Leigh's artwork on his website.

Today's Picture: Redbilled Oxpecker
August 9, 2007
Redbilled oxpecker on buffalo hide

Photo Details: Redbilled Oxpecker (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) perched on the torso of a resting buffalo, Elephant Plains Game Reserve, Sabi Sands, South Africa.
Camera: Canon EOS 400D; Lens: Canon 100-400 IS Zoom; Focal Length: 400mm; Shutter speed: 1/200; Aperture: f5.6; ISO: 200.

Additional Info: The redbilled oxpecker, with its brightly colored bill and distinctive yellow eye-wattle, is commonly seen in association with antelope, giraffe, and buffalo in most southern African nature reserves. These small birds have adapted to occupy a niche where food in the form of parasites such as ticks that live off mammals is readily available.

To enable them to move around on the host animal's fur (or skin in the case of rhino and hippo), oxpeckers have strongly curved, sharp claws. This feature, combined with exceptional agility and balance, allows them to swivel around quickly and even hang upside down to get to the animal's belly region.

For additional pictures of oxpeckers that better illustrate how they can cling to the host animal's fur, see these previous blog entries:
Impala Ram with Redbilled Oxpecker
Impala and Redbilled Oxpecker

Please Note: Pictures displayed on this blog are copyright protected. View them online, enjoy them, but kindly do not use them for anything else. Should you wish to purchase an image or require clarification on use, please contact me.

Today's picture: Blesbok Herd
August 15, 2007
Blesbok herd

Photo Details: A herd of blesbok (Damaliscus dorcas) grazing in long winter grass, late afternoon, Spionkop Nature Reserve, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
Camera: Canon EOS 400D; Lens: Canon 70-300 IS Zoom; Focal Length: 140mm; Shutter speed: 1/400; Aperture: f8; ISO: 200.

Additional Info: The blesbok is an attractive, medium-sized antelope that is predominantly a grazer. Both males and females carry heavily ridged horns that curve back from the head then swing outwards.The coat is a reddish brown, against which the distinctive white face blaze and light patch on the rump stand out quite sharply.

Blesbok are gregarious, congregating in small herds as in the photo above. The acacia trees, "red grass", and termite mounds in the background give the scene a typical African look that would have been familiar to the young Winston Churchill, who was captured in the area while working as a war correspondent during the Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902.

Please Note: Pictures displayed on this blog are copyright protected. View them online, enjoy them, but kindly do not use them for anything else. Should you wish to purchase an image or require clarification on use, please contact me.

Back to top of page
Previous Entries

By Month
By Category
My Original Blog
2005 Entries
2004 Entries
2003 Entries
Who Am I?
Brief Bio
Back to Wildlife Blog Home Page

Wildlife Camera Store for your wildlife photography requirements

Home /  Blog /  About /  Contact

Contact Details: Scotch Macaskill, Dirt Road Traders, Currys Post Road, Howick, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Tel: +27 (0)82 578 2329. Privacy: Your privacy is guaranteed. See our Privacy Policy for more. This site accepts advertising and other forms of compensation - see Disclosure and Advertising for details. Site updated: 2019. Copyright © 2002 - 2019 Scotch Macaskill