There is something that happens at Mashatu every year. Something that is experienced and enjoyed almost entirely alone...
As the rains arrive, the soils rejuvinate, grass starts sprouting and water sources replenished. But, after one or 2 above average rains, there is a small little gem that turns the once dry dustbowl into a landscape of exceptional beauty.
tribulus terrestris, commonly known as 'devil thorn' is the culprit for the transformation. These spectacular flowers open up at sunrise, and after abundant rains, carpet our reserve in a soft shade of yellow.
The special thing about it all, is that a plethora of herbivores congregate on these yellow lawns to feed on the flowers, Photographically, it is just pure paradise!
To top it all off, the reserve is very quiet with few visitors, so a game drive for hours in these flower carpets can be spent alone and in absolute awe.
The specie that seems to benefit the most from the flower bloom
A few obliging props amongst a carpet of tribulus
A beautiful, unscarred male lion on the plains at dawn
Ayoung baboon enjoying the tribulus on the banks of the Majali river
Ruth enjoying the presence of a relaxed and happy herd of elephants
A congregation of elephants along the watercourses of the Majali river
After a long swim and bath in the river, a tired female takes a long rest on the cool soil of the river, with her calf waiting patiently
A scene at dawn with a cloud bank approaching
An immature African Harrier Hawk hunting for a meal in the crevice of a Sheperds Tree
Portrait of a young male baboon
A watchful eye
A tiny baboon amongst the tribulus flowers
A male lion lion stands before the riparian forest