Mopane tree – A pictorial tribute


The Mopane tree (Colophospermum mopane) has long held a fascination for me, and it probably stemmed from me eating my first dried Mopane worm as a teenager. The juicy larvae of the Mopane Moth (Gonimbrasia belina) is a valuable source of protein to local populations wherever the tree is found.

The tree is prevalent in the northern half of the Kruger National Park in South Africa where I spent nine days photographing all manner of wildlife. It occurs in large tracks of dense thicket from the Satara Rest Camp northwards. They make wildlife spotting quite challenging, but if you take your time and drive slowly, you can spot many of African birds and animals. Like all South African National Parks, it takes patience to spot wildlife.

Letaba Rest Camp is still one of my favourite camps in the park and is situated in a large area of the Mopane distribution. Staying in the northern camps will allow you the chance to see all of the species below including the lovely African Wild Cat. And, let’s not forget the forget the colourful mix of greens, reds and browns of the star tree herself.

“Mopane Tree – Kruger National Park – Marinovich Photography”

“Mopane Tree – Kruger National Park – Marinovich Photography”

Butterfly leaves

“Mopane Tree – Kruger National Park – Marinovich Photography”

Burchells Zebra Portrait

"Varying landscapes in the Mopane thicket "

Varying landscapes

"Yellow-billed Hornbill - Marinovich Photography”

Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill


"Mopane leaves - Marinovich Photography”

Autumn colours

"Mopane beauty - African Leopard - Marinovich Photography”

African Leopard can be seen, but you need a little luck

"Makes wildlife spotting fun - Marinovich Photography”

Makes wildlife spotting fun

"Curious African buffalo - Marinovich Photography”

Curious African Buffalo

"Mopane Leaves - Marinovich Photography”

Mopane Leaves

"Mopane Warthogs - Marinovich Photography”

Curious Warthogs

"African Wild Cat - Marinovich Photography”

African Wild Cat

A moment with a small cat

Below is a link to a separate blogpost about this beautiful little cat and the time it allowed me to spend with him. I was using the Canon 1Dx for the first time and was astounded at its low-light capabilities.

The African Wild Cat vs. the Canon 1Dx

"Impala Ram - Marinovich Photography”


"Mopane Thicket - Marinovich Photography”

Dense thickets

"Resting African Buffalo - Marinovich Photography”

Resting African Buffalo

"African Grey Hornbill - African Birdlife - Marinovich Photography”

African Grey Hornbill

"Mopane Tsessebe - Marinovich Photography”


"Feeding Ground Hornbill - Marinovich Photography”

Feeding African Ground Hornbill

"Dying leaves - Marinovich Photography”

Dying Leaves


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