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Stew Gitlin | profile | all galleries >> Tanzania 2012 >> The wildlife of Tanzania >> Interesting Wildlife Encounters >> Elephants at Serengeti Camp tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Lions at a Buffalo Kill | Cheetah Drags Kill Behind Termite Mound | Elephants at Serengeti Camp | Two Cheetah Brothers | Lions and Elephant Confrontation | Elephants, Zebras, and a Pride of Lions | The Leopard Adventure | The Lions at Ngorongoro Crater

Elephants at Serengeti Camp

This was a surreal experience. It was about 6:30 at dusk at our mobile tented camp in the Serengeti. People were finishing their showers, getting dressed, and getting ready to go to the mess tent for dinner. Looking out the front net windows of the tent we could see a large family of elephants walking in line about 100' feet in front of our tents. The first picture shows about half the number, with an equal number continuing to the other side of our encampment. As I was sitting in a chair outside the tent, this group stopped just about in front of the tent and began grazing in the grass there. By the time the big fellow in the last picture came to about 30' of my tent, I decided it was time to go into the tent and watch the proceedings from there. The big fellow came within about 15' of the tent and was pulling up grass right there. Finally one of the camp staff started banging on one of the large supply drums and the family took off and we were able to make it to the mess tent.

That was not the only wildlife encounter that evening. Around 9:00 that night we could hear lion rumblings very clearly, and very close. It turns out that 5 lions were roaming around our tent sites. Two camp vehicles finally had to come and chase them off. Quite an eventful evening.

The following morning when one of our group left camp at about 5:00 in the morning to do the balloon ride, they spotted two lions in the jeep's headlights, not more than a couple of hundred feet from our tents.
The family approaches our tent sites and start grazing
The family approaches our tent sites and start grazing
They were about 30' away at this time, and I decided it was time to go back inside the tent
They were about 30' away at this time, and I decided it was time to go back inside the tent
The big guy approached within about 15' of the tent.
The big guy approached within about 15' of the tent.