Friday, December 19, 2008

Those things can come out of nowhere ... Puzzle #1

Countless times in my 6 months in Kenya I have been surprised when and animal suddenly seems to appear out of nowhere. One time in particular stands out in my mind. It was early in the morning, before the sun creeps over the escarpment to the east. We were following a small group of hyenas and surveying the scene. We stayed in place until the suns rays illuminated the Mara. Soon after the sun made its daily appearance, a group of about 10 elephants appeared on the horizon 300 meters from our research vehicle. The terrain we were in was relatively flat, so we were astonished that more than 15 tons of mammal could sneak up on us on an open plain!

The elephants trudged slowly along, making their way to the next group of trees and bushes. Within 10 minutes, the elephants vanished into the bushes. The only way to know the elephants were in the bushes was to either see them go in or listen for branches and trees being snapped by the powerful animals.

This will be the first post in what will hopefully be a fun series of interactive "Where's Waldo" type puzzles. I will post a picture with hidden animals and the blog readers can try to find the animal or animals. For each picture posted, I will give the story behind the picture in the following blog post in the series. If I told there story at the same time as the picture being posted, it would make it too easy. Of course, since I am a poor graduate student, there will be no reward for people that correctly spot all the animals. The first picture is an easy one, but it should help blog viewers to comprehend how an 8,000 pound (~3600 kilogram) animal can be there one minute and gone the next without having David Copperfield in area.

So how many elephants are in this picture?


Dana said...

I'll say five - maybe six :>)

Look forward to "Where's Waldo".

Funder said...

I'm gonna go with four. L to R - a pale one, the one with its head poking out, a dark one, and the one in the foreground.

Dana said...

Now that I am looking at this photo on my HOME computer, it's hard to tell with the light brown ones in the background. They all blend in together. Sneaky! LOL!!!

Michigan State University | College of Natural Science