Living Tree of Life

Trees reflected in water in Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

Named for the region’s Maasai people, this wildlife refuge in southwest Kenya shares a border with the vast Serengeti National Park in neighboring Tanzania. Together, the contiguous reserves cover over 6,000 square miles of East Africa, protecting some of the continent’s most iconic, and endangered, wildlife. Much of the time, the grasslands here in Maasai Mara are dry, but during the rainy season the rivers run high, seasonal ponds attract great numbers of animals, and—as seen in our image— pools of water reflect majestic acacia trees. It’s a picture of sublime stillness, but it’s certainly not always this peaceful in the reserve: The annual great migration sees millions of animals pass through the grasslands of this protected park in search of good grazing.

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