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Lunch 99

By SimonFletch  
Thank you for all your Votes and Comments on 'Lunch 98 - Suckling Elephant'. Really pleased to get so many "aaah's" Smile Sorry, Ronnie, to have put you off your Alpen, on reading about the baby Ele's transition from milk to veg diet, via its Mum's dung (that'll teach you not to fiddle with your mobile at the table..!!!).

I don't know why you should be so surprised to learn that a mother Elephant's teats are under their armpits, Barbara. That's where most of the girls I know, keep theirs...Blush Annette dubbed the Ele's as "Kenyan Lawn Mowers"; so apt. But the thing that's often fascinated me is that these huge beasts are constantly on the move, never staying in an area to polish off what's in front of them. They will even move from an area of lush vegetation into a barren one. Then their tempers flare and anything in their way gets knocked over, including trees.

Why would one area be barren and another full of lush grassland? You may think immediately of water supply and partially, you would be correct. But it's a fascinating fact that even in a small area like Nairobi's National Park, there are over 100 different grass species and two distinctly different soil types. Given those two factors, the variables multiply. One species of grass is known as the Boring Grass - take a ripe seed and place it on your arm - add some spit (or water) - and the seed stands on end and attempts to bore its way into your arm. Obviously, the same happens when the seed is on the ground and it rains...

Today's 'Lunch'
The Impala - or my nickname for this very graceful Antelope - "McDonalds" (can you guess why?). They are a favourite food of all the big cats, although they can run nearly as fast as a Cheetah. They are able to twist and turn very quickly, even at high speed. They also jump during a run, thrusting out their hind hooves, kicking out at their pursuer. Many chases by the big cats are thwarted by these cunning beasts.

They stand at 3' (90cm) to the shoulder and weigh 40 - 50kg, the males weighing more. Only the males carry the long lyrate horns. Herds are either made up of batchelors or a single male with a harem of between 12 - 300 females. During the breeding season (timed to coincide with the rains), the male alternates mating with fighting off members of the batchelor herd. Like most stags, they give off growls, roars and snorts and the sounds carry for up to 2 km.

The Impala usually keeps its head to the ground when feeding and I had resigned myself to uploading one such image for the Lunch series. One the occasion of V1, I had attempted an impersonation of a male Lion, to catch its attention, mid-mouthfull. I am unsure whether it was my impersonation, or Bobby's peels of laughter, which worked...

No. 100 of Lunch tomorrow. I'll do my best to find something suitably bloody, to celebrate.

Have a Slovenly Sunday, everyone ...!

Simon

Tags: Lunch Eating Kenya Mcdonalds Impala Wildlife and nature Nairobi National Park

Voters: CarolG, bobpaige1, NDODS and 33 more

Readers' Choice Awards are given to photos that get over 30 votes

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Comments


CarolG Plus
9 196 18 Greece
4 May 2014 7:19AM
Has to be V.2 for me today, Simon, a wonderful capture. Carol

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NDODS Plus
6 5.1k 125 United Kingdom
4 May 2014 7:23AM
I'm with Carol on this one, image two for me also please Simon. "Superb photography as always"

Regards NathanGrinGrinGrin
bobsblues 6 10 2 United Kingdom
4 May 2014 7:33AM
Good morning Simon thank you for your UA on my woodpecker upload yesterday much appreciated .
Two good images today although they do look a little bright on my old moniter Blush
Take care old chap Wink
Rob
4 May 2014 7:54AM
Are the images over-bright on anyone else's monitor?
I calibrated my home monitor on my return home...
LynneJoyce Plus
8 20 99 United Kingdom
4 May 2014 8:02AM
In V1 he is obviously laughing too, in V2 he is giving his opinion of your lion impersonation. In both you have captured a very handsome male beautifully in unforgiving light.
They are bright on my monitor Simon but two fine captures,
Fred.
4 May 2014 9:33AM
Two excellent shots, Simon - they are a little bright on my monitor!

Richard
ChiliMan Plus
10 135 17 Singapore
4 May 2014 11:09AM
It's so funny how Boring Grass doesn't sound boring in the least! In fact it's the most fascinating grass I've heard of. Amazing.


Quote:...these huge beasts are constantly on the move, never staying in an area to polish off what's in front of them.


They might be suffering from the "grass is always greener" syndrome.

Very interesting info as always, Simon, and two excellent shots of this impala...especially the view of McButt in V2 Grin

Andrew
4 May 2014 11:14AM
2 Super wildlife images Smile
cats_123 Plus
12 4.6k 26 Northern Ireland
4 May 2014 1:33PM
I would recognise that rear end anywhere GrinGrin
4 May 2014 1:54PM
V2 looks bit overexposed on my monitor. Love both the images.
Maiwand Plus
9 3 72 England
4 May 2014 2:52PM
Lovely shots Simon. V2 looks like a very positive statement.!!!!GrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrin
Ron
4 May 2014 2:56PM
V 2 just looks so good to me
ali63 Plus
4 750 1 United Kingdom
4 May 2014 5:25PM
First class images Simon,

Ali Smile
Mike_Smith Plus
9 314 1 United Kingdom
4 May 2014 6:16PM
Two cracking shots Simon
Two stunning images, Simon. Like the rear end view for s.Sunday.

Fred
4 May 2014 9:23PM
V1 made me smile Simon, looks like it's laughing at you, with you! V2 is my favourite, that is a stunning image. Perfect GrinGrin

Kathryn
4 May 2014 10:22PM
Superb captures, Simon!
George
4 May 2014 10:52PM
Two lovely shots Simon and loved the write up as per normal. Cathy
Bantu Plus
3 7 1 India
5 May 2014 4:02AM
Very close encounter,beautiful.

vikram
Chinga Plus
5 3 1 United Kingdom
5 May 2014 6:27AM
We have arrived at 30th! Grin
Such a graceful animal... I particulary like the rear view of V2!
IB
Glostopcat 10 255 2 England
5 May 2014 6:47PM
Two cracking shots of this elegant antelope Simon, v2 made me smile, he's obviously none too impressed with your lion impression!WinkGrin
annettep38 Plus
5 218 40 Costa Rica
5 May 2014 7:25PM
Really impressed with your description and I have found out once and for all why fast food is named Macdonald's! I haven't been there for about 35 years so I can't recall whether it kicked or not, but it was certainly bouncing back.
Enough rambled, a very juicy back side for sure!
gajewski Plus
12 10 9 United States
8 May 2014 8:04PM
Wonderful wildlife shots.
-=\Walter
dark_lord Plus
12 1.8k 326 England
9 May 2014 8:21PM
But the impala is a goodquality meat. I prefer to call 'fast food esatblishments' as junk food outlets'. Welcome back to the UK Smile
viscostatic 10 34 5 United Kingdom
20 May 2014 7:28PM
Almost as attractive from the rear as the front with those beautiful markings. Amazing horns.

Phil.

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