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Honey badger versus African rock python

Honey badger attacking African rock python at Chobe River

© Henning de Beer

There is just under a month and a half to go until our Photographer of the Year 2018 closes for entries, and so far we have received some incredible photos that show wildlife doing what they do best. Henning de Beer – who hosts photographic safaris to Botswana and Namibia – sent in a photo of a honey badger going after an African rock python. We wanted to know more about this story, and so Henning shared with us this amazing wildlife encounter.

Two honey badgers drinking from Chobe River

© Henning de Beer

Written, and photographs, by Henning de Beer 

I was on a photographic boat with some of my guests on the Chobe River when we saw two honey badgers approaching the river to drink.

While we were taking photos of them drinking, the driver of the boat spotted an African rock python lying motionless along the riverbank, warming up in the sun. The honey badgers hadn’t noticed the python, and were starting to move slowly away while keeping an eye on us.

Honey badger walking in Chobe River

© Henning de Beer

The next moment one of the badgers tripped over the python! With a shock, he realised what was lying there in the sun. The honey badger circled around the python a few times, checking him out, and then attacked with extreme speed.

Honey badger approaching African rock python at Chobe River

© Henning de Beer

The snake didn’t even have a chance. He crushed the head of the snake instantly and it was over, within seconds. He immediately dragged the snake into the protection of the bushes and out of our sight.

Needless to say, there was great excitement among the guests on the boat as that was something you  definitely don’t see every day!



Africa Geographic Photographer of the Year 2018

Africa Geographic Photographer of the Year 2018, brought to you by Land Rover South Africa, with stunning prizes from Canon South Africa and Tanda Tula, will run from December 2017 to the end of April 2018. Click here for more details.

Africa Geographic