Elephant enjoying dust shower, Botswana
Caption: Elephant (Loxodonta africana) enjoying a dust shower, using its trunk to gather and then spray dust over its body, Mashatu Game Reserve, Tuli Block, Botswana.

Wild animals can regularly be seen both dust and mud bathing. They usually roll in the sand or in shallow, muddy water and it’s comical watching the large mammals like rhinos and elephants rolling around like kids, apparently enjoying themselves.

But this behavior has a more serious purpose — the aim is to rid themselves of parasites like ticks and fleas. Elephants have the advantage of using their amazingly dextrous and flexible trunks to gather and spray their massive bodies with dust or water, so have the choice of outdoor shower or bath, using either sand or water.

The above photo was taken while on safari to Mashatu Game Reserve in Botswana’s Tuli Block region in the east of the country.

Camera: Canon EOS 400D (Digital Rebel XTi); Lens: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Telephoto Zoom; Focal Length: 105mm; Shutter speed: 1/320; Aperture: f/5.6; ISO: 400.

Don’t forget to browse our superb selection of Elephant Prints and Posters (examples below).

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