Botswana Photographer of the Month - Michael Klaver
We asked Michael a series of questions that will help us learn a little more about himself and to see why he has taken such a liking to Photography and of course Botswana. So let’s dive into the interview we had with Michael and see what got him into photography and to know a little more about him.
We asked Michael six different questions to understand a little more about his love for photography and Africa as a whole. An interesting read for those who love conservation
1. Why did you take up wildlife photography and what is your passion?
I started to photograph wildlife and wild landscapes because I am passionate about them and to draw viewers’ attention and focus on these places in order to inspire others to make an effort to protect them.
I am passionate about the outdoors and anything wild. I enjoy camping, hiking, backpacking, Overlanding, reading and taking photos. I am a student of nature conservation and geography, and I am interested in human-wildlife interactions and conflict mitigation.
2. What is your favourite Animal in Botswana?
My favourite animal in Botswana would have to be my favourite animal on the continent, which is the African Painted Wolf (Lycaon pictus).
3. What is your favourite part of Botswana(Lodge/camp)?
I am yet to visit the Central Kalahari, however my most enjoyable experience of Botswana this far has been camping in the Savuti, Chobe National Park.
4. What makes a good wild animal photo?
A good wildlife photograph for me would be a photograph that captures the animal in its habitat or recognisable landscape so that when you look at the photograph you can immediately identify where that photo was taken and what it may have felt like to be there.
Otherwise, a nice photo would be animals being active as if the photographer wasn’t even there.
5. When is your favoured time to photograph wildlife?
The best time to photograph wildlife and landscapes would be early morning and late afternoon when the sunlight isn’t too harsh.
With regards to the time of year, it depends. In the dry season, animals congregate more around water points and the vegetation is less thick which makes viewing animals easier. The dry season is also great for sunrise and sunset photos because the dust in the sky makes for beautiful colours.
The wet season is great for birding as migratory birds are usually here during those times. This is also the time of year for birth and growth so you will see many young animals and the vegetation will be lush.
6. Car of Choice when touring
The car of choice for travelling to Botswana would depend on the itinerary. To get the most of your travels a 4x4 vehicle with high clearance is best. You will be very limited with a 2x4. However, a 2x4 vehicle with high clearance would be fine for the Chobe section near Kasane.
One can also choose to stay outside the reserves and be guided in open safari vehicles in the parks. Guided river cruises and scenic flights over the delta are also available and highly recommended.
So, in short, if you want to self-drive through the parks and reserves in Botswana you will need a 4x4 with high clearance, and if you want guided safaris you can get by with any vehicle.