Animals

By Iain Watts

This angry rhino was captured charging towards the camera in a hair-raising snap, taken during a thrilling close-up encounter.

It was taken at Nairobi National Park, Kenya, following a brawl between a pair of female white rhinoceros – which both of their respective babies joined in with too.

In a brief moment of settled dust, one of the three-ton beasts began charging at surprisingly relaxed photographer Gurcharan Roopra, 42, who saw the perfect opportunity to capture the spine-chilling moment.

Gurcharan, from Nairobi, Kenya, said: “Initially I just thought the rhinos were play-fighting but when I looked back at the pictures they had some spots of blood on them so it must have been intense.

“We were watching them for about 30 minutes and they were moving around a lot while fighting.

“One of the mothers turned around at one point and ran towards us and the guy who was with me was absolutely terrified.

“I’ve photographed this family of rhinoceros for the past five years and I know they aren’t aggressive characters so I was pretty calm – the complete opposite!

“When one of the mother rhinos came charging towards us, it was the perfect opportunity for a photo and I’m really pleased with how it turned out.

All four rhinos came running towards the photographers one by one – but luckily jumped to the left and ran past them in the close-shave encounter.

Gurcharan added: “I got a full sequence of her feet up and down on the ground but the best one is where she looks like she’s flying with all feet off the ground.

“People are always quite shocked when they see this photo. I always get questions about the backstory and whether she was charging at me.

“Photography gives me the best form of relaxation and whenever I get home from the park I fall asleep straight away with no worries.

“It’s even relaxing when a rhino is charging right towards you!”