By Ian Hinchliffe
This giraffe appears to be sporting some ‘fan-tash-tic’ facial hair when a tiny bird landed on the end of his face with its wings spread.
The stunning snaps show the giraffe looking directly at the camera while the oxpecker bird cleans his teeth making it look as though he’s sporting a moustache the fictional detective would be proud of.
Rather than finding it a pain in the neck, the giraffe appears to enjoy the dental work as other pictures showing it moving its jaw to allow the small grey bird to continue its job.
The images were taken in the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania earlier this year by amateur photographer David Chen.
David, from Israel, said: “I find this image particularly special because the giraffe facial expressions are so human like.
“The giraffe welcomes the bird with pleasure because the oxpecker is cleaning her teeth and also eating the parasites.
“It’s amazing to see it live – the symbiotic relationship between the oxpecker bird and the giraffe.
“It was the first time I’d seen them do this and it was such an amazing experience to photograph.
“Also when you see them up close you realise the size of this gentle animal.”
The 41-year-old said it can sometimes take hours to capture the perfect shot or it can happen in minutes – with a lot of it down to luck.
David said: “The experience of taking pictures is something I can’t explain in words.
“Mostly I do it for the mind and soul.
“It’s amazing to see wildlife in their natural habitat and to take pictures of them playing, hunting and eating while you are there to experience it through the lens.
“I started taking photography more seriously in 2011, before then I just took pictures with my phone.
“I wanted to capture nature especially the wildlife. This kind of photography is what interests me more than other photography genre.
“It’s also taken me to some exotic places like Africa and even Kamchatka in Russia.
“I’m always planning what will be my next destination for capturing the amazing wildlife.”