If you’re a fan of lions, brace yourself. For you are about to see lions like you’ve never seen them before, thanks to the astonishing work of Philip Stander, with Lianne and Will Steenkamp, who have produced a stunning new book called Vanishing Kings, Lions of the Namib Desert (HPH).
The Namib is the only place on Earth where a small population of desert-adapted lions occurs. Remarkably, these unique lions have survived along the Skeleton Coast for decades, but until twenty years ago were merely phantoms – elusive and seldom seen, and then believed to have become extinct.
In 1997, scientist Dr Philip Stander discovered a small pride of survivors in the heart of the desert and began to study the lions: a study which turned into a lifetime commitment. Through the years he was able to unfold the secrets surrounding these highly adaptive cats who appeared to thrive in their harsh environment.
Illustrated with over 300 astonishing images, Vanishing Kings bears testimony to one of the most remarkable research projects ever undertaken on African wildlife, and allows us to understand how these rare lions survive in the relentless Namib desert.
This small selection of images gives a taste of what to expect in the book, a must-read for anyone with an interest in African wildlife. Click on the images to view in full size and to scroll through the gallery.
Vanishing Kings is available from Travel Africa here.