A young Kenyan woman holds her pet deer in Mombasa, Africa; March, 1909.
Photograph by Underwood and Underwood
Patterns in Nature: Mysterious Earth
- Sand Dunes, Empty Quarter - The borders of four nations—Saudi Arabia, Oman, Yemen, and the United Arab Emirates—blur beneath the shifting sands of the Rub al Khali, or Empty Quarter, desert.
- Water Reflection, Utah - Reflecting off water, light paints peacock-feather patterns onto a rock wall in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.
- Shoreline Salt Piles, Senegal - Salt piles line the shoreline of Lake Retba.
- Fairy Circles, Namib Desert - Fairy circles, or grassless patches in Namibia, seen here from an airplane.
- Drying Fronds, Kenya - Fronds dry in neat lines around a tree.
(Source: National Geographic)
The Incredible Pink Flamingo Migration
Over 2.5 million of these beautiful, pink, strange birds flock in unison from one lake to another in search of food and a breeding spot. It is one of the few amazing animal migrations on Earth.
Between April and June, Kenya’s Lake Nakuru is overrun with millions and millions of pink flamingos who’ve come to feed on the lake’s blue-green algae. During alternate months, the beautiful pink flock breeds at Lake Natron which is located in Tanzania.
This all occurs in the East African Rift Valley of Kenya and Tanzania. Lake Nakuru National Park and Lake Natron offer its visitors a rare vision of the pink flamingos. Their display is a spectacular sight, especially if you get to spot them soaring overhead or watch their awkward walk.
Oldest Footprint Ever Found
This fossil footprint found near Ileret, Kenya, is 1.5 million years old. These footprints are the oldest ever found of the human genus.
The Man-Eaters of Tsavo
"I had only been a few days at Tsavo when I first heard that these brutes had been seen in the neighborhood. Shortly afterwards one or two coolies mysteriously disappeared, and I was told that they had been carried off by night from their tents and devoured by lions.Two most voracious and insatiable man-eating lions appeared upon the scene, and for over nine months waged an intermittent warfare against the railway and all those connected with it in the vicinity of Tsavo."
"The workmen firmly believed that they were not real animals at all, but devils in lions’ shape. Many a time the coolies solemnly assured me that it was absolutely useless to attempt to shoot them. They were quite convinced that the angry spirits of two departed native chiefs had taken this form in order to protest against a railway being made through their country."
"About three weeks after my arrival, I was roused one morning about daybreak and told that one of my jemadars, a fine powerful Sikh named Ungan Singh, had been seized in his tent during the night, and dragged off and eaten. On hearing this dreadful story I at once set out to try to track the animal. On reaching the spot where the body had been devoured, a dreadful spectacle presented itself. The ground all round was covered with blood and morsels of flesh and bones, but the unfortunate jemadar’s head had been left intact, save for the holes made by the lion’s tusks on seizing him, and lay a short distance away from the other remains, the eyes staring wide open with a startled, horrified look in them. The place was considerably cut up, and on closer examination we found that two lions had been there and had probably struggled for possession of the body. It was the most gruesome sight I had ever seen. We collected the remains as well as we could and heaped stones on them, the head with its fixed, terrified stare seeming to watch us all the time, for it we did not bury, but took back to camp for identification before the Medical Officer.”
The following incidents were taken from the book, “The Man-Eaters of Tsavo” (1907), written by John Henry Patterson. He recounts his experiences while overseeing the construction of a railroad bridge and the mass killings caused by the lions in the area of what would become present day Kenya. Before Patterson had managed to kill both lions, they had eaten an estimated 100-300 men from the camps of bridge workers throughout their reign of terror. What makes the story strange is that lions are not known to stalk and kill humans. The lions were taxidermied using their original skulls and pelts and are on permanent display at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois.