In a picturesque departure from the typical image of lions in a dry and dusty landscape, these majestic creatures were captured against a backdrop of vibrant yellow flowers, creating a breathtaking sight.
This awe-inspiring transformation occurs annually at the Mashatu Game Reserve in Botswana, located at the eastern fringes of the Kalahari Desert. The reserve, with an average of only 30 days of rainfall per year, experiences this remarkable phenomenon between December and February.
Following the rain, the landscape undergoes a stunning metamorphosis as the barren plains rapidly transform into expansive fields of colorful flowers.
Photographer Janet Kleyn had the privilege of capturing these stunning images. As the resident manager and professional photographer at PhotoMashatu, she has witnessed this spectacle for the past four years.
“For many people, including seasoned safari-goers, witnessing this is a unique and awe-inspiring experience,” Kleyn shared. The juxtaposition of predators amidst such a surreal and beautiful setting leaves them stunned.
“I have been fortunate to witness this phenomenon for four years, and it always amazes me,” Kleyn added. “Observing the bush come alive, animals reveling in the rain, and rivers starting to flow is truly a sight to behold.”
The flourishing plant life attracts a variety of animals, including impala, kudu, and baboons. Cheetahs and lions are drawn to the abundance of prey in the area, making sightings of these magnificent predators quite common.
This period also marks the calving season for kudu and wildebeest, while herds of elephants return to the region to take advantage of the fresh vegetation.
With abundant wildlife set against a backdrop of natural beauty, it’s no wonder that the Mashatu Green Season has become a highly sought-after destination for photographers.
Visitors to the Mashatu Game Reserve can partake in guided game drives, adventurous safaris on bicycles, or even horseback rides.
Additionally, they can rent specially adapted photographic facilities for exclusive use and schedule personalized photo sessions with Janet or other expert photographers at the Matebole Elephant Photographic Hide.
This captivating spectacle of lions amidst a vibrant carpet of yellow flowers is a testament to the incredible diversity and natural wonders of the Mashatu Game Reserve.
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