Upon waking in the morning Sifaka sit for a while on their branches warming themselves in the first rays of sunlight stretching out their limbs in the process, which is of course is a practice any athlete will tell you is a must before exerting oneself physically, and for the hours ahead and the need for Sifakas to leap from tree to tree – often distances of 10 metres apart – to continue their foraging for food, they have to be as limber as possible to avoid injury.
Most of the pictures I'd seen of Verreaux's Sifaka before my visit to Madagascar last month showed them in various postures while skipping along the ground (something they do when the distance between trees is too far to leap), but I'd also seen one or two marvellous photos of them in flight, as it were, and I asked my guide about this behaviour and whether he knew of a place to take me where I could see them in action, preferably with just enough distance between trees and branches for me to capture a few frames with nothing but the subject in midair and sky in the background.
We set out the very next morning at 5 am so our trackers could find a family group in the spiny tree forest before they woke up, also allowing me time to find a place of my choosing where the sun would be rising behind me. Not only did I get the shots I'd been dreaming of but, as you can see from this frame, Mother Nature smiled on me yet again by painting the sky a perfect shade of blue and throwing in a few wisps of white cloud for good measure. When Mother Nature is kind to me, She's VERY kind :^)
Also, high quality prints are available of this image and all images you find on my 500px pages by way of our Nature Impressions website, where you can also find many more pictures and information on the subjects I photograph, so please feel free to pay us a visit!