@beverlyjoubert

Beverly Joubert

Award-winning photographer & filmmaker. @dereckjoubert & I produce African wildlife conservation documentaries. More images at Natgeocreative.com

http://www.beverlyjoubert.com/

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Over grass drenched with rain from a summer storm, a young lion moves to investigate a mushroom from the Ink cap family. He's suffering from a bad eye infection that he and his siblings have all had, but from which they're slowly recovering. He approached the mushroom with purpose and then promptly ate it. It's not that unusual - many species of cats have been known to be attracted to mushrooms - and apparently it's because they're on the hunt for protein. The high glutamate levels in fungi activate cats' umami receptors, signalling that they are protein-rich and edible. Of course, many fungi species are not edible and no doubt mistakes are made by felines around the world, but this ink cap didn't seem to do him any harm. Who knows, perhaps it could even help with that eye infection? #littlebigcats #Okavangolions #mushroomeatingcats

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As @natgeo hits 100 million followers, we’re remembering this shot posted on their feed in 2017: an exuberant elephant calf, striding out with early morning energy and play on his mind. It was posted on World Elephant Day, with the reminder that ivory is most valuable when left on a live elephant. Ending the trade secures young elephants’ futures. Since then, China's ban on the ivory trade has come into force. With luck, this little one is now striding safely into a brand new day. Thanks to @natgeo for its enduring focus on our planet's wonders, people and wildlife. PS: There are a few more hours left to enter @natgeo’s contest. To enter, post your most Nat Geo-inspired photo on your feed, with the hashtag #NatGeo100Contest. The top 10 photos will go up on @natgeo; the winner gets a photo trip to Tanzania. #SayNoToIvory  #NatGeo100Contest

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Zebra stallions often move away from their herd to challenge other males – and they work hard to defend and protect their families. After a confrontation, an excited stallion will sometimes charge back to his mares, calling and jumping in a spectacular display. #StallionPerformance.  Speaking of performance, @natgeo has hit a phenomenal 100 million followers. To all the photographers on Instagram, they’ve launched a photo contest to celebrate – on for just 24 hours. Enter today (and perhaps get your pic posted on @natgeo) by posting “your most Nat Geo-inspired photo” on your feed, with the hashtag #NatGeo100Contest. The winner gets a photo trip to Tanzania.

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A very hot cub. The temperatures have been exceedingly high here in the Okavango, although a few summer storms have cut through that closeness. It’s not easy to cool down when you have a fur coat, but earth is generally cool and a nice, rounded termite mound that doubles up as a belly scratcher can be just what a young lion needs. #littlebigcats #okavangolions

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A wild pangolin sighting, like this one in the Okavango, is a rare privilege – we’ve only ever seen about 10. Here, the mammal’s impressive scales are clearly visible: they make up some 20% of a pangolin’s body weight. They work as protection against predators, but all a poacher needs to do is scoop up a tightly rolled animal and head to market. Like rhino horn, pangolin scales are made of keratin. And now poachers are targeting all eight species of this endangered mammal worldwide for meat (it’s considered a delicacy) and scales (for traditional medicines). Over 40 tonnes of pangolin products have been seized in just two months. Protecting wild spaces and species becomes ever more important. And education is still one of the best ways to fight back. #WorldPangolinDay #OutOfControl #MyScalesAreNotMedicine #whenthebuyingstopsthekillingcantoo

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Portrait of the dominant male lion at Duba Plains and a phenomenal female known as #Fekeetsa, meaning to overpower, or overcome the odds. Fekeetsa has overcome a broken foot which has healed, but hindered her slightly. She is now one of the senior lionesses in this pride. She has an unusual hunting technique. Unable to chase antelope down over long distances due to her foot, she hunts more like a leopard and patrols the swamps looking for young lechwe antelope that she can ambush. She is successful almost daily and provides enough meat for the pride so that they don't need to move around in search of prey and have become very much resident on the edge of the swamps. #ThisIsMyTrophy #OkavangoLions #TsaroPride #DubaPlains

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To celebrating love today – and to overcoming ultimate odds. #lostcub #fekeetsa #happyvalentinesday

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This young spotted hyena from Duba Plains is around the same age as the little #lostcub. It's likely to have been better fed though: hyenas often suckle their young for up to 18 months. Also, because females are dominant in hyena society and young inherit a social rank from their mothers, female hyena cubs have less to fear from grown males in the clan. Hyena cub 'adoptions' have been recorded by researchers and the new family member's status was linked to its surrogate mother, not the real parent.  #dubaplains #okavango #bigears

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One of Fekeetsa’s older cubs is learning more advanced hunting techniques – practicing on a hapless red lechwe that Fekeetsa has caught. Fekeetsa is very attuned to male lechwe and the clash of their horns when they fight each other. When she hears that sound, she know that the lechwe will be focused completely on their battle and will not be paying attention to what – or who – may be sneaking up behind them… #Okavangolions #Lookbehindyou #Fekeetsa

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A little roar from a determined #lostcub who has at long last found protection and comfort. The lioness, #Fekeetsa, may not be able to give her milk, but other than the fact that the lost cub is smaller than her real sibling, who is now quite far away with their mother, it seems that she may be doing ok on just meat. #littlebigcats #okavangolions

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She might be small, but she’s ferocious and holding her own against her new adopted siblings. The little #lostcub is growing and gaining strength from the meat that she’s been fighting for. She’s no longer such a pushover for the other cubs but can pounce on them from behind - just as they have done to her so many times.  Her real brother and mother have moved away. This pride doesn’t move around much: Fekeetsa, the main lioness and the lost cub’s current protector, focuses her hunting efforts on the swamps and is highly successful. Any chance for the real mother to find her cub alone has not presented itself and she and her (healthy and fat) son have moved on to new hunting pastures. #littlebigcats #OkavangoLions #Fekeetsa

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This is Fekeetsa. Her name means to overpower or overcome all odds. She’s recovered from a broken foot, an injury we were sure would get the better of her. But she’s remarkable. Unable to chase down antelope, she’s more of a stealth hunter - like a leopard, and she focuses her attention on the swamps where young lechwe are hidden. Every day she brings meat to her pride and right now, she has an extra young mouth to feed. She has accepted the little #lostcub into the pride and has groomed her and provided for her. Fekeetsa may not have milk to give her, but with her incredible hunting skills, the entire pride is well fed, reducing the competitive stress and giving the little cub another lucky chance of survival. #fekeetsa #okavangolions #bigcats #thisismytrophy #againstallodds

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