A difficult meal!

20140215 - IMG_0233 - E - THANDA

Bheki Ngubane – my tracker at Thanda – is driving with other guides when I am working on various special projects for Thanda.  So, a few weeks ago I bought Bheki a small Canon point-and-shoot camera just in case he gets a good sighting when driving without me (and my cameras :-).

Well, that was a good decision. Yesterday, while on an evening game drive with Thanda guests, Bheki and field guide Cela Manyanga spotted an incredible scene.

A very large African Rock Python had killed an adult Impala and was busy swallowing this large herbivore. The snake was still working on the Impala when the last game drive vehicle had left the scene. A very exciting sighting for all Thanda guests!

A great image – well done Bheki!

More about the African Rock Python …

The African Rock Python (Python sebae), is a large, nonvenomous snake of Sub-Saharan Africa. It is one of seven species in the genus Python. Africa’s largest snake and one of the five largest snake species in the world may approach 6 m (20 ft). The snake is found in a variety of habitats, from forests to near deserts, although usually near sources of water. The African rock python kills its prey by constriction and often eats animals up to the size of antelope 🙂 ! The snake is widely feared even though it very rarely kills humans. Although the snake is not endangered, it does face threats from habitat reduction and hunting.

Picture by Bheki Ngubane – Thanda Private Game Reserve

9 Replies to “A difficult meal!”

  1. I’d be having nightmares! and be making sure my doors and windows were closed or tent well zipped!

  2. My thats one big snake. Great capture for Bheki. Do you know if the snake started to regrugitate the Antelope while Bheki and others were observing it. Sometimes they do that so they can get away.It’s amazing that they can swallow something that big.Good luck with your special projects.Have A Great Day!

    1. It night be worth mentioning that it is a protected animal and therefore one is not allowed to kill them, especially as they are very sought after for “mutti” by sangomas and inyangas.

  3. Truly Amazing act of nature. Any idea how the Rock Python actually captures the Impala or did it y find the impala previously deceased?

    1. Thanks for your comment Kirk – I am quite sure that it “stalked” the impala which for a snake of this size means to have patience and be in the right place at the right time. Once the Python caught it by latching on with it’s bite it would kill it by wrapping itself around and suffocate the Impala. I assume that the snake captured the impala alive.

  4. Incredible photograph good to see Bheki taking the photos
    Sent via my BlackBerry from Vodacom – let your email find you!

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