Kenya- cheetah and yearlings, continued

Charlie Shugart
Registered: Feb 06, 2007
Total Posts: 28515
Country: United States

As I indicated on my previous post, the hunting momma cheetah and the impalas soon disappeared from our view.
So we followed the two youngsters at a respectable distance, assuming they would lead us right to their mom.
Not so. They got temporarily lost. But I got a few images of their behaviors while they were looking (#1,2 and 3).
At one point the twins (one male and one female), lay down in frustration. Within a few minutes a Thompson's gazelle stumbled on them- and I mean ON them!. The two immediately jumped on the little (but adult) gazelle but didn't know how to make the kill. The struggling ended when the gazelle broke free and ran off. The two young cheetahs made only a half-hearted attempt to catch it.
Unfortunately because of the surrounding foliage and my general excitement, I got nothing in the way of photographs . But it was fun to watch .
A few minutes later, we went to find the female. She was in the shade, exhausted and still breathing hard (pic #4). She had failed to make a kill, and was waiting and watching, making a sort of mewing sound- obviously calling her babies to her. We waited a few more minutes before leaving.
No doubt they later got together, but it wasn't as easy to do as I had thought.
Not a Nat Geo moment- but few things are.
And at least the whole thing was real- and I saw it. That's always worth something .

Registered: Jan 11, 2010
Total Posts: 830
Country: United States

Hey Charlie, it sure is great to see these types of dramas play out right in front of you. I think some people figure wild animals have some kind of radar to stay together - they don't - and it doesn't always end well for the youngsters. Now, for crying out loud, try and control your excitement and get those images....ha ha...I've done the same thing many times.


Registered: Dec 17, 2004
Total Posts: 43353
Country: United States

Another nice set Charlie, and a interesting story too ~ Ron

Registered: Jul 02, 2010
Total Posts: 27583
Country: Canada

Good looking set Charlie, esp #2.

Tim Kuhn
Registered: Nov 29, 2006
Total Posts: 46255
Country: United States

That sure must have been something to witness Charlie! I hope to that someday but until then I'll live vicariously through the pictures of those of you that have. I kind of like the scanned slide feel to these Charlie, somehow that makes it seem that much more exotic. You always have some good stuff to share with us


Charlie Shugart
Registered: Feb 06, 2007
Total Posts: 28515
Country: United States

Thanks Jim, Ron, Ken and Tim (sheesh- all you guys with nice and simple 3-lettered first names- I hate you ).
I do appreciate the positive feedback from all you generous FMers on the Bird Forum .

Howard Kearley
Registered: Jul 16, 2008
Total Posts: 8827
Country: United Kingdom

Must be great to see, I dream to go one day.
Great shots


Ted ellis
Registered: Aug 08, 2007
Total Posts: 25986
Country: United States

Well done Charlie!

Registered: May 02, 2010
Total Posts: 32992
Country: United States

Oh Charlie what a wonderful experience you must have had ! Fantastic shots. Your life certainly is full of wonder.


Registered: Feb 02, 2010
Total Posts: 34596
Country: Canada

another very nice set Charlie

Charlie Shugart
Registered: Feb 06, 2007
Total Posts: 28515
Country: United States

Thanks Howard, Ted, Birdie and Kenny.
I enjoyed several things about my visit to Kenya- but the primary purpose was to see the wild beasties. After landing in Nairobi I shopped for an affordable safari company with a guide/driver who spoke English. The tour was a cheapskate camping safari (sleeping on the ground in campgrounds), but the wildlife viewing was as good as any of the group tours. A chartered driver/guide would have been better, but this worked out fine- and cost less.

Registered: Aug 24, 2005
Total Posts: 34112
Country: United States

A good story to go along with he pics Charlie. What an experience!

Registered: Feb 20, 2011
Total Posts: 3646
Country: N/A

more quality stuff charlie. these guys just look fast so i imaging keeping up with them is a real challenge. you appear to have been up to the task!


Registered: Oct 29, 2005
Total Posts: 25434
Country: United States

Great memories Charlie and wonderful photos to boot. Some of my best times have been watching the stalk and the missed heart races anticipating a successful outcome only to be disappointed....but hey, I then get to have lunch while these guys/gals pant away with nothing to show for their efforts.

Registered: Apr 24, 2008
Total Posts: 348
Country: United States

Nice sets Charlies. The big cats are always a crowd pleaser.

Charlie Shugart
Registered: Feb 06, 2007
Total Posts: 28515
Country: United States

Thanks Socrate, Dorian, Eric and Celbrett.
I was a bit surprised that this mother and her twins were in a semi-wooded area. All the TV nature shows indicate that cheetahs spend all their time in the open country. Maybe because filming a hunt is easier out in the open .
But after my meager efforts, I have a much greater admiration for all those wonderful hunting sequences on the telly. Those guys are good.

Registered: Jul 08, 2008
Total Posts: 20092
Country: United States

What an experience Charlie and to have been there to see, smell and hear
the experience, what a thrill it must have been.