Kenya is slowly gaining the interest of several wildlife elephant photographers as it is being noted as the home to several unique species that have not been spotted in years or have been considered extinct.
In February, pictures of a black panther flooded the internet as the rare species was captured in Kenya by researchers from the San Diego Zoo during an observation exercise in Laikipia County.
Captured by Will Burrard Lucas, images of the leopard cleared all doubts of its non-existence and now, a little over a month, the photographer has released images he took in 2017 of a 60-year-old tusker elephant weeks before it died.
The tusker mammals have been in high demand by poachers for their tusks despite becoming rare and nearly extinct due to poaching activities. It is rare for one to live as long as 60 years and grow its tusk as long as this tusker did before she died.
Calling it the Elephant Queen, photographer Will Burrard Lucas described the tusker as having the most amazing tusks he had ever seen leaving him awestruck that such an elephant could exist in the world.
He went on to say that “she was skinny and old but she strode forward with stately grace. She was like a relic from a bygone era,” he wrote paying tribute to the elephant on his blog post where he shared the black and white photos.
Lucas explained his partnership with the Kenyan Wildlife Service and Tsavo Trust, a conservacy organization focused on protecting elephants of Tsavo.
In an interview with CBS, he talks about the photos of Queen which he says are his favourite from his new book Land of Giants that explains why he held on to them for two years to add to his collection.