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Africa Geographic
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Africa Geographic Travel

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I am currently in South Luangwa National Park in Zambia and I found out that I was going to be here during the “supermoon” total lunar eclipse. This would be the only opportunity to photograph such an occurrence for 18 years – so I immediately set about planning how I could take a photograph of this phenomenon with an African twist.

I obtained permission from the Zambian Wildlife Authority to work in the national park at night and at 2.45am on the night of the supermoon I set out in search of subjects. I had a number of potential shots planned but I knew I would need to remain flexible as I couldn’t control the opportunities that would present themselves.

I first went to where I had seen lions the evening before. On arrival, the lions had gone but I could hear their faint roars in the distance. I followed the sound through the African night and eventually found the lions just as the eclipse was starting.

There was only one tool that would allow me to frame the lions with the eclipse behind, and that was my trusty BeetleCam!

I was after a shot of a lion under the blood moon, but this was going to be a challenging shot to achieve for so many reasons. Balancing the foreground brightness with the dim red moon was an exercise requiring some guesswork and good estimation skills, as I was trying to compose the shot in the pitch darkness. Not to forget that I had to do this while trying to avoid the pride of lions running off with my BeetleCam! However, I persevered and, shortly before the moon set, this is the shot I managed to get…


A lion cub with the supermoon eclipse behind. Taken with a Canon EOS 5D mk III and 17-40mm f/4 lens on a BeetleCam. f/13, 8 seconds, ISO 3200. Off-camera flash triggered with Camtraptions Wireless Trigger. Plus approximately a month of planning and a spot of luck.

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Will Burrard-Lucas is a professional wildlife photographer from the UK. He uses innovation and technology to achieve fresh perspectives in his work and is the founder of Camtraptions.