The Impala – stately, graceful and plentiful. This third quality I listed probably contributes to its undervaluation as a wildlife sighting or photographic opportunity.
In areas like the Greater Kruger Park I will give you a surety of 100 to 1 in odds that your first sighting upon entering the park will be impala. They just seem to be there in limitless numbers. Yet these populous antelopes can also provide some interesting moments, if one dares to sit with them a while and observe instead of the customary drive-by.
I get that many overseas visitors to Africa want to move on to “bigger things” given their often limited time in the reserves. But those that have a passion for watching natural history unfold will do well to spend some time with them next time you are in the field.
Here are some images I have captured of these antelopes over the years. So that is my humble tribute to the Impala in the form of a photo essay. Which image did you like the most? Drop me a comment below.
God bless you
The last rays of daylight kiss and envelope this stately buck’s profile.
These two young males show separate stages of horn development.
A young fawn receives much-needed nourishment from its vigilant mother.
Those who have seen impalas in rut will know that the males can really have at it. The intensity is visible in the eyes here!
An impressive ram in the Mara Triangle (Kenya) against an oncoming storm.
Dwarfed by the immense woodlands of Mana Pools, Zimbabwe.
Close-up study of this graceful antelope in the best kind of light.
Since picking up a DSLR camera for the first time, a little over 3 years ago, Morkel has been invigorated with an unbridled passion for the photographic art form. He has grown at a tremendous pace and put immense energy into the creation of his images. He absolutely loves spending time in the wild places of his native Southern Africa. From a young age he has been visiting legendary wildlife and outdoor locations, including the Kruger Park National Park and the Drakensberg Mountains, with his family. Now that he has found a way to share the natural beauty of his homeland with the rest of the world he is regularly out on photography trips. An Industrial Engineer by profession, and an accomplished artist in genres like music and poetry, Morkel has always enjoyed whatever allows him to express his creativity to the fullest. Photography turned out to be the perfect "marriage" between his engineering brain and artistic soul. "I hope that in some way I can raise awareness through my imagery of the plight of not only our wildlife but also the fragility of the last remaining wilderness areas that they call home.” Morkel was recently honoured for his commitment to his craft by receiving a "Highly Commended" for one of his images in the 2010 BBC Veolia Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. He is based in Mpumalanga, South Africa and even though he prefers going on safari with his family and friends, Morkel also leads the odd photographic safari and has recently begun presenting workshops in post-processing techniques.