A bull elephant raises its trunk and flares its ear to express dominance over another male – before promptly falling over as it heads back to the wider herd.
Photographer Joseph Anthony was on safari in the Nambiti Game Reserve, South Africa, when he saw a pair of bulls in an intense standoff.
The two adolescent males were flaring their ears and trying to appear bigger and more dominant that the other in a battle for their place in the herd.
The two adolescent males flare their ears and try to appear bigger and more dominant that the other in a battle for their place in the herd
But minutes after the altercation one of the elephants takes a dramatic tumble as it runs back to its family.
The elephant falls to its knees in ‘a momentary fall from grace’ before picking itself back up and carrying on.
Mr Anthony said: ‘This was very rare, my guide and the other guides at the Reserve all said it was an all-time top five wildlife moment to witness and capture.
The elephant falls to its knees in ‘a momentary fall from grace’ before picking itself back up and carrying on
The elephants raise their trunks and try to appear as large as possible in order to intimidate their opponent
‘The fact he was running will have contributed to him falling so I was surprised more than anything first of all to see him fall while looking through my viewfinder.
‘To see a majestic giant have a momentary fall from grace was both amusing and endearing.
‘I have seen cheetah misstep and stumble walking and the occasional antelope but never an elephant.’