African lions, as kings of all beasts, are courageous and formidable creatures. But then, they aren’t used to encounters with tiny, remote-controlled cars with cameras strapped to their hoods. The accompanying footage shows an adolescent male lion in Kenya reacting to one such encounter, first from a side view via a second camera, then from a frontal view via the car-cam. The frontal view, in perfect lighting, begins at the 10-second mark and is the highlight of the clip as it reveals an extreme closeup of the approaching cat.
Australian Chris Bray conducted this unusual experiment during a recent photo safari, using a GoPro Hero 2 and a $60 car. As viewers can see, the lion bravely approaches the car and becomes curious, even playful, swatting at the pint-sized vehicle with retracted claws.
But when Bray begins to drive the car backward and forward, the lion isn’t sure what to make of the situation, so he backs off with a puzzled look.
This is yet another example of how attachable cameras are able to afford unique perspectives of photo subjects.
“Just so lucky with this shot, the amazing evening lighting, the angle to the sun, that the lion approached front-on, everything,” Bray states.
He says footage from another car-cam encounter is forthcoming, this time involving an elephant.