African Spoonbill and Hippopotamus. 24″ x 18″. Acrylic on Canvas. 2020.
Seeing four of the big five (African Bush Elephant, White Rhino, Southern Lion and Cape Buffalo) while I was at the Gondwana Game Reserve in South Africa was absolutely thrilling. The South African Hippopotamus is not one of the big five, but the pair we saw at Wildebeest Dam were a sight to be seen, especially out the of the water. We would drive by the dam quite often to get to the sampling sites and each time I would keep an eye out for the African Spoonbill that would forage around in the dam behind them. It was dwarfed by the two Hippos but was a stunning pure white against the dark water of the dam. Apart from bird point counts, I did not have a lot of time to bird while I was there. So I took every opportunity to spot birds while we drove through the reserve.