Life in the Namib Desert, Namibia

January 2010



Sunrise, Spitzkoppe







Sunset sky, Fish River near Brukkaros Volcano, south central Nambia



Spitzkoppe boulders





Spitzkoppe in dawn light





Sign of life, Spitzkoppe






River north of Palmwag, central Namibia





Algae in desert river north of Palmwag






River in the desert north of Palmwag




Riparian vegetation






Euphorbia species on dolerite rock above desert river






"Bottle Tree" a desert succulent





Sappling, Spitzkoppe






Vegetation at crater rim of Brukkaros volcano






Tree, Spitzkoppe

A similar tree on Looking Glass Rock, Pisgah National Forest, North Carolina






Welwitchia mirabilis, the national plant of Namibia
Some individuals live to be 2000 years old.





Female Welwitchia





Male Welwitchia






Acacia sp. flowers






Acacia sp., Tsauchab River Canyon near Sesriem





Canyon plant with flower






Wolfmilk cactus near Twyvelfontein





Close-up of Wolfmilk cactus near Twyvelfontein




Hoodia gordonii in flower

San people chew the stems of Hoodia to suppress thirst and appetite during prolonged hunts.
Hoodia extracts are marketed in the US as an appetite suppressant.




Dormant plant on dolerite






Frog and spider, Warmquelle Canyon, Damaraland








A commotion in the reeds, Warmquelle Canyon, Damaraland







Male of one species attacking a male of a sympatric species






Amphibian larva, Warmquelle Canyon, Damaraland






"Grasshopper" near the waterhole at Etosha National Park





Termite mound and Mallory Haynie




Springbok, Etosha National Park






Desert Elephant north of Palmwag






Elephants bathing in natural waterhole, Etosha National Park







Elephant in transit







Warthog, Etosha National Park














Oryx, a type of horse antelope








Kudu, north of Palmwag




Desert Giraffe, north of Palmwag






Giraffe and Hartsell's Zebra at waterhole, Etosha National Park






Giraffes approaching waterhole at Okaukuejo at sunset, Etosha National Park






Giraffes drinking at the Okaukuejo waterhole just after sunset





Removing an Acacia thorn from the tongue





Ex-giraffe, Etosha National Park




Giraffes have the same number of cervical vertebra as humans






Giraffe skull






Hartsell's Zebra, Etosha National Park





Mountain Zebra, north of Palmwag







Blue Crane (endangered), Etosha National Park



Women and children of a Himba kraal north of Warmquelle




Himba woman with traditional ornamentation and "hairdo"




Himba woman breast feeding





Intersection, # 1






Intersection, # 2






Sunrise in the dunes just east of Sesriem, southeastern Namibia






Sossusvlei # 1







Sossusvlei # 2





Sunrise, east of Okaukuejo, Etosha National Park


Wofford group around the campfire at Spitzkoppe







Campsite at Spitzkoppe




photos by GR Davis

More photos of Namibia from 2008
Other photos by GR Davis

It is interesting to contemplate an entangled bank, clothed with many plants of many kinds, with birds singing on the bushes, with various insects flitting about, and with worms crawling through the damp earth, and to reflect that these elaborately constructed forms, so different from each other, and dependent on each other in so complex a manner, have all been produced by laws acting around us........Thus from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.

from the last paragraph of "On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection" by Charles Darwin