Safari 6: Amboseli to Selenkay

Clinton Richardson admires the animals – great and small – on his game drive in Selenkay Conservancy …

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This series of blogs will take you on Clinton’s safari in Kenya as he travels from Atlanta (USA) to Nairobi National Park, Selenkay Conservancy (Amboseli), Ol Pejeta Conservancy (Laikipia) and Olare Motorogi Conservancy (Maasai Mara). Let’s join him on his journey as he shares his insights into the conservancies, Porini Camps and the people (and animals!) that he meets along the way. All images are from Clinton’s photo site. Blog entries are from his Venture Moola blog at
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It took us awhile to realize what we were seeing when we came upon this family. We were driving our from our lunch spot deeper into the Amboseli park when our driver stopped the vehicle a few feet from this family.
Like other families, this one had been heading from the horizon toward the marsh. But unlike the others, this family was not moving. They were stock still. In fact, they looked downright catatonic. Nothing seemed to distract them. They would be perfectly still for a few minutes and then move, only a few feet, strike a pose and become perfectly still again.
After letting us speculate, our guide finally explained. The family was sleeping in mid-day in the middle of their march. They had likely traveled a long distance and needed time to rest. We realized then that everyone’s eyes were closed.
At one point, the little one sat down to rest and the others huddled protectively around her. We took our cue and moved on.

Protective Sleep Stance
We were now driving on a dirt road that separated the marsh from the horizon where the elephants were coming from. This meant plenty of opportunities to see elephants, including largest bulls, up close as they crossed in front and beside our vehicle.

Beside our Vehicle
More elephants and zebra and wildebeest filled the marsh as we drove beside it to an open pool of water. In some of the wetter areas we would see elephants submerged in the marsh to levels that seemed to defy logic. What a good time this immovable pachyderm seemed to be having.

Once we reached the pool we found it teeming with another kind of life. Birds everywhere and none more abundant than the flamingo.

Nothing seemed to care much about our vehicle that had to cross a road flooded with water. No one bothered to move when we approached, not the spoon bill, the flamingo, the pelican or even these too blacksmith lapwing chicks.

Smaller than a Feather – Blacksmith Lapwing Chicks

Yellow-billed Pelicans
After a full day at Amboseli, our drivers headed us back toward camp in the Selenkay Conservatory. This ride was quicker with fewer detours as you might expect although we still saw animals along the road like the secretary bird below.

Once back in camp, we cleaned up and enjoyed a late dinner. No night drive tonight. We were all ready to turn in and prepare for the next day’s drive.
First published 1 Nov 2018. All photos and text are © Clinton Richardson. All images are from his galleries at

About Clinton Richardson

Clinton Richardson has been writing and taking photographs for decades. His books include the critically acclaimed 5th edition Richardson’s Growth Company Guide 5.0 and the award-winning book about social media and ancient coins called Ancient Selfies. His images, including images taken on his trip, can be viewed at His Venture Moola blog can be viewed at

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