Page 45 - Discover Botswana 23rd Edition 2023
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 to fade. Within a few minutes, the unfettered vista of blue disappears as white cumulus clouds surreptitiously re-arrange themselves into brooding dark towers, interconnecting in the formation of some unopposed meteorological empire. As the sun droops its way reluctantly to the horizon like a lost fighter, the mood changes. The wind gradually picks up, gathering speed across the landscape and rattling the leaves of Camelthorns, Fan Palms, Shepherd and Mopane trees. Wattled cranes appear, their synchronised wingbeats like a carefully choreographed chorus-line. Like a rollercoaster, the temperature plummets in an unstoppable descent. The smell of moisture begins to infiltrate the senses.
All around, the ever-lowering cloud base finally gives way, as if some ceiling has finally buckled under the weight of an overflowing bath. The enormity of the Botswana horizon means that at times this break can be seemingly isolated, a hole through which millions of gallons of water now gush, washing the plains and pans, and bringing instant life to an empty landscape.
In a moment this watery transformation is echoed by the life it will support. Excitement mounts; hearts beat faster, predators’ mouths open wider; first as a grateful symbol of the realities of this refreshed awakening, and then in an expectation of the bounty to come; a bounty that connects all of this extended family on a single orbit and destiny. Whenever there is water in Botswana it is time to come alive and rejoice!
Left: In the shadows of the rest of the herd, a young Elephant reaches out for yet another trunkful of water. Elephants need to drink daily and are heavily reliant on water for their survival.
Andy is a UK based award- winning wildlife photographer and photojournalist for over 25 years. Published globally, Andy not only contributes heavily to all forms of media, but also provides a range of strictly limited edition prints to collectors worldwide. When not publishing, Andy leads wildlife photographic safaris to incredible wildlife destinations around the world.

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