16th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Natural World
Tusker Stare

Taken in Amboseli National Park, Kenya. One of the oldest elephants remaining in Amboseli National Park, the essence of this photograph is wisdom. Staring into the uninterrupted gaze of this bull elephant conveys the hardened sorrow that has culminated from the pain of having family members lost to poaching. To survive 60-70 years in a world with rampant poaching, unforgiving droughts, and diminished home ranges requires intelligence, precision, and determination. The wrinkles on trunk convey the weariness of such an endeavor, while the meandering ear veins suggest a willful existence. Such long tusks are a rarity on elephants now, and the parallel nature of the shot enables you to engage with the elephant's individuality, allowing the viewer to understand why these emotional, sentient creatures are in dire need of saving.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 07.2018
Date Uploaded: 08.2018
Photo Location: Amboseli, Kenya
Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II
Copyright: © Noah Rothstein