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Photo Information
Copyright: Japie Venter (japie) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1814 W: 100 N: 1904] (5187)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2004-11-15
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon EOS 300D, Sigma 170-500mm APO, Digital ISO 200, Skylight
Exposure: f/6.3, 1/400 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Mammals of Southern Africa [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2004-11-20 11:20
Viewed: 5031
Points: 31
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I took this Eland (Taurotragus oryx) also in the Lion and Rhino reserve. This is probably my best portrait of an Eland Hope you like it.
Males can grow to a shoulder height of 1,7 metres and weigh about 900 Kg. In spite of its heavy physique, eland are remarkably agile and large bulls can easily jump over regular fences. They have a slight hump at the shoulders and prominent dewlap. The heavy horns of both sexes slant backwards and lengths of as much as one metre have been recorded.

Females are much smaller, weighing about 450 kilograms. Males have a patch of dark hair on their foreheads that covers glandular skin. Both males and females have fawn coloured coats. They also have faint vertical white stripes on their flanks, which are distinctive to the eland.

The Eland is a browser, utilizing a wide diversity of plant species. It can exist for long periods without open water, but is then reliant on the fruits of Tsamas and Gemsbok Cucumbers to meet its water requirements.

Although the Eland does not have a specific breeding season, in South Africa it has been noted that there are peak months when significantly more calves are born than in other months. A single calf is born to a mother after a gestation period of approximately nine months. Calves can run with the herd a few hours after birth.

One of the interesting characteristics of an Eland herd is that it includes a nursery for the calves. When threatened by predators, the herd forms a front with the large males taking the lead positions while the calves and pregnant females are protected behind the fortress of large males. Since Eland herds migrate widely in search of good grazing, dominant bulls do not defend spatial territories. However, bulls do display territorial or possessive behaviour towards cows during oestrus.

Preferred habitat varies from semi-deserts, grasslands, to light savannah north of the Orange river, to light woodland in KwaZulu-Natal. The Eland is a nocturnal animal and the vegetation that absorbs moisture from the atmosphere at night provides ample fluid sustenance for his large antelope that lives in areas with little surface water.

Where they are found
Eland can be seen in most of the game reserves in South Africa. In areas where they used to roam and became extinct, they have been reintroduced with great success.

Adult Eland are only preyed upon by lions and the young fall prey to most of the larger carnivores such as Leopards, Cheetahs and Wild Dogs.

The camera settings:

Focal Length: 500mm
F Stop: F/6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/400
ISO: 200
Tripod: No
Flash: Yes
Reflective Panel: No
Cable release: No

willie, red45, PDP, marhowie, gerhardt, AndyB, Luc, christophe, Lourens, Leace, touristdidi, MindarL has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Good shot, focus maybe a bit soft. Great note
Well done

  • Great 
  • willie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1023 W: 61 N: 648] (2083)
  • [2004-11-20 11:49]

Japie, I like the serenity of the animal. It looks almost like a painting. Very nice

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2004-11-20 12:30]

Africa at its best. Perfect composition.

  • Great 
  • PDP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 2821 W: 344 N: 3779] (11769)
  • [2004-11-20 13:03]

It keeps staring at me! It's giving me the creeps :-o. I like the composition here and the full attention of the beast is very captivating.

Well done.

The softness of the animal and the relaxed pose work very well giving a feel of serenity here. The atmosphere is captivating. Very well done!!!

Japie, I agree that the full attention of the subject is engaging for the viewer. I like those contours on the horns? antlers? what ya call the darn things anyway???

What a stare! He really looks through you. Nice pose and composition Japie. Well done.

  • Great 
  • AndyB Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1366 W: 32 N: 1351] (3982)
  • [2004-11-20 19:13]

A nice capture and I agree with the others....what a stare!
A good shot and a great note.
Very well done.

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2004-11-20 21:19]

You can be largely proud of this portrait, Japie. A big peace gets free of this Eland. Your presence does not seem to irritate him in the least bit.
His horns are magnificent natural sculptures. His ears: two displayed wings. He looks like of think: "Why you so stir, Japie, come and let us relax together". His glance pierces the screen.
Thank you (and Merry Hundredth)

I don't know if it is the horns, but your photo has something diabolic, very great shot
well done

Nice shot, Japie. I think the little soft focus works quite well here. Impressive pair of horns.
Mooi werk.

Soft focus and we can't see the whole animal, so I'm dissapointed.
Apart from that I love the horns, Eland are imposing beasts, even in a captive environment.

What wonderful horns on this creature! a beautiful face!!

Very good portrait of this eland. The are magnificent antelope. I love the way he / she looks right into the camera. Lovely example of their interesting horns.

Hi Japie!

The animal looks very attentive and poised. I love the pose you were able to capture. Very nice details too and very informative note. This animal new to me. Thanks for posting it! Regards!

A little soft on focus, but a great pose nontheless. outa points today, later..

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