Moment a foolhardy stork is lucky to escape with his head after ducking into the mouth of a crocodile to retrieve its meal.
Stunning set of images taken in the Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania. Yellow-billed bird and four-metre long reptile fought over half a tiger fish. Crocodile was victorious but stork luckily managed to escape unharmed
This is the hilarious moment a stork appeared to get its head stuck in the jaws of a hungry crocodile.
The yellow-billed bird was fishing in the Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania when it spotted the head of a tiger fish floating in the water.
But as it picked the snack up in its beak, a four-metre long reptile suddenly appeared in the shallows.
For a second it looked as though the stork had been caught up in the action, with its head dangerously close to the beast’s jaws.
Mark Sheridan Johnson captured the stunning set of images while at work as a safari guide.
The 35-year-old said: ‘I noticed the stork was playing with something in the water, it turned out to be the head of a tiger fish.
‘While playing with the fish head the stork attracted the attention of a young crocodile, who came swimming in at speed to steal the bird’s dinner.
‘Once the croc had the fish, the stork realised the battle was lost, so decided to carry on fishing near the crocodile.’
A stork’s diet mainly consists of small fish, which they swallow whole.
The photographer added that it was common to see storks fishing close to crocodiles.
He added: ‘They know that as the croc moves along the shoreline of the lake, it will scare fish away from it, which the stork will catch.
‘Similarly you’ll find different species of birds such as the yellow billed stork and the spoonbill hunting side-by-side. This is called a “twin hunting strategy”.’
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