When a wild rhinoceros walks up and has a demand, you listen!
It was just another day at work for Garth De Bruno Austin, a South Africa-based cinematographer. This wildlife photographer had spent quite a lot of time hanging out near an ordinary wild rhino, hoping to get a closer shot. When rhino approaches photographer, things get a little weirder than Austin bargained for.
While filming shots of an orphaned rhino's rescue by Care for Wild rescue center, an unbelievable thing happened— he was approached by a different wild rhinoceros. While still wild, many animals can and will adjust to the scent of of a human who hangs around long enough to become familiar. No one should ever approach a wild animal without training, though, as the results can be disastrous. Fortunately, this strange rhino harbored no ill will in her heart towards the wayward photographer.
What did she want? Not hugs, but belly rubs.
The moment made for a cinematic masterpiece, one that was luckily caught by another videographer. Austin mentioned being humbled by the experience and made a plea to his followers in an Instagram post depicting the ordeal.
"What an amazing experience this was! These incredible animals humble you every time you see them. Please think about the fact that if we can't save this iconic specie from extinction, then what will we be able to save?"
Austin also goes on to inform everyone that this particular rhino has actually been allowing him to film her for a few years now, which enabled a safe and trusting relationship to form between the two over time.
He made sure to never approach her or encroach on her personal space, instead allowing her to come to him when she felt ready to do so, and strongly recommends that no one ever approach a "truly wild" animal in their habitat to prevent unforeseen injuries for everyone involved. Because while videos like this are truly incredibly, no amount of views is worth the loss of a life, two-legged or four.
Fortunately, when rhino approaches photographer, things work out for both of them.
To follow Garth De Bruno Austin on his adventures in filmmaking, you can follow him on Instagram @garthdbaustin.
Follow along at our Wide Open Pets Facebook!
This article was originally published March 17, 2017.
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