Wildlife photographer Will Burrard-Lucas had an astonishing encounter with the ‘Queen of Elephants,’ AKA F MU1, in the Tsavo National Park in Kenya during her final years of life, which he captured on film.
Burrard-Lucas had already begun working on a project with the Tsavo Trust, in which he would shoot elephants in the Tsavo National Park.
His investigation into the area led him to F MU1, also known as the Queen of Elephants, who he encountered while conducting his studies. According to many who have met her, she has a lovely temperament and that she is a gorgeous creature.
After a lengthy search that lasted several days, they were ultimately able to locate her, as he recalls it:
“I caught a sight of an elephant’s back through the foliage, and seconds later she walked out into the open.”
“I was unable to say anything. Despite the fact that she was short and feeble, F MU1 carried herself with dignity and grace. Because her tusks were so long, they scratched on the ground in front of her as she went ahead in the forest. “She was like a relic from a bygone-era,” writes the author of the novel.
They stayed with her for the entire day, and she escorted them to her favorite watering place, where she patiently awaited her time to wash.
With every photograph, the queen’s true grandeur was caught, and every wrinkle represented a victory over the ravages of time against the risks of poaching, droughts, and other natural hazards. She had made it this far despite all odds.Unfortunately, she passed away just a few weeks after Burrard-Lucas took these photographs, most likely as a result of natural causes, just weeks after they were taken. Fortunately, these photographs have preserved her memory.
With every photograph, the queen’s true grandeur was caught, and every wrinkle represented a victory over the ravages of time against the risks of poaching, droughts, and other natural hazards. She had made it this far despite all odds.
She designed the cover for Burrard Lucas’s book, Land of Giants, which tells the story of several years of elephant living in the Tvaso region of Tanzania.
A tribute to the dedication and hardwork that the Tsavo Trust and Kenyan Wildlife Services have put in to safeguard these magnificent animals, her long and prosperous existence is unquestionably a success.
In his own words, Burrard Lucas describes the experience: “As a wildlife photographer, encountering a subject like F MU1 is really rare.”
This is a creature that is unlike any other, maybe the most remarkable of her type, and yet one that has only been photographed by a few of people before me. Her company was a true privilege, and I was grateful for every minute of it.”
You can find out further more about his encounter with this African elephant on his blog, which you can read here.
The end product is Land of Giants, a book full with photographs of the large tusk elephants that live in the Tsavo National Park in Kenya.
Watch the video about this article and comment below on what you feel about the Queen Elephant