Thursday, December 11, 2008


A vicious fight for dominance in the African desert between two furious squirrels has been captured on camera.

The Cape grey squirrels can be seen hitting out at each other in a fight for survival. British photographer David Slater, a former International Wildbird Photographer of the Year, captured the aggression as other squirrels looked on. Another picture shows five of the animals gathered together in a gang. The squirrels live in the Etosha National Park in Namibia's Kalahari basin. Temperatures can swing from freezing at night to 40 centigrade during the day. The group of five watched from a safe distance as the two squirrels sorted out their differences in spectacular style. Even when one appears floored and at the mercy of the other it rallies valiantly, fending off a ferocious attack with a leg, foot and claws outstretched. In other pictures feet and fur continue to fly as the pair then grapple at close quarters in the swirling dust. The remarkable series of photos were taken while a colony of the creatures, which are poor tree climbers so tend to live below ground in burrows, ventured to the surface to forage for food.

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