A pride of thirsty lionesses was caught drinking at a safari park watering hole.
Robert Watson, 37 years old, was at Pilanesburg National Park, South Africa, with his family when he woke up early in the morning by agitated impala and wildebeest, snorting and stamping.
Realizing that their restlessness was due to nearby predators, Robert sprung from bed, grabbed his camera, and followed a dry creekbed, hoping the mystery mammal would appear in view.
The father of one’s patient was lucky enough to capture the magical moment when seven lionesses emerged from their hiding place and lapped at the water.
Engineer Robert from Chicago, Illinois, said: “The instant I woke up that cool summer morning, there was certain predawn electricity in the air – you could feel the muted anticipation all around.
“The impala and wildebeest were going crazy, stomping their feet and snorting their alarm calls.
After sitting down, I was still taking time to catch my breath when the mystery revealed itself, and it wasn’t one lion but seven lions from a neighboring pride that had come down to take a morning drink.
“This is exactly what I’ve been waiting for—a chance to get up early and take some really good photos of these beautiful animals.”
Robert, who has taken photos for six years, took pictures of the serene scene at dawn using his Canon DSLR.
Robert said: “I was shaking with excitement as I removed the lens cap on my camera, focused in, set my exposure, and fired off a short series of photos like an artistic machine gun.
“Seeing those lions having their breakfast while the sun rises above is an example of why I keep returning to this magical land that has called my name since I was a boy.”
After the pride finished drinking, they slowly walked away with that confident swagger of an apex predator and melted into the bush as if they had never been there.