Wildlife Safari Africa
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African Safari, Martial Eagle

The Martial Eagle is the largest of all the African eagles. This particular bird stayed with us for quite a while, on the edge of Lake Nakuru.

We had spent some time searching for leopard, which we never found, and lions, of which we found one pride of seven females.

Our search took us into quite thick undergrowth and this eagle, sitting just above our heads at the side of the track, appeared completely unconcerned by our presence. We moved forwards just a few yards into the thickets when we heard quite a commotion and lots of squealing behind us.

When we came back to investigate, the Martial eagle had moved to a nearby radio tower and he was clearly covered in blood around his head and beak.

A short search revealed the corpse of a young gazelle which had had its right side ripped wide open.

Over the next hour or so the eagle would return to his kill, tear off pieces of flesh and gorge himself.

Interestingly enough, no other animals or birds came to challenge him.

In our four week photographic safari, we saw half a dozen kills, involving lions, cheetah, hyaena and others. In every case other predators came to challenge the hunter for a piece of his kill.

Maybe it was just that there was no other predator around who was hungry at that time, but it was noticeable that the kill, though exposed, lay unmolested by any others. Maybe it was just that one look into this guys eyes was all the warning that was needed for others to know to keep clear!

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All images Copyright Avery Little