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Elephant (Loxodonta africana) – Etosha National Park, Namibia

Photographed in the dry season, the mud flaking of him mimics the parched earth on which he stands. As the season wears on, just as the mud has dried and cracked so the rivers and water holes gradually disappear leaving islands of life concentrated around the little water that is left. By digging down with their tusks elephants uncover water beneath the surface providing a critical lifeline for themselves and many other animals during these drought conditions.