More to See on Safari: The Little 5 & The Ugly 5

While on safari, many tourists pursue what is known as the Big Five; a term from the early days of African exploration used to describe the most dangerous animals to hunt. It has since evolved into a list of the most popular African wildlife to spot while in the bush: elephant, rhinoceros, lion, Cape buffalo and leopard. With so much to see on safari however, the list is hardly exhaustive and has inspired the creation of other animal groupings, like the Little Five. This group includes the elephant shrew, ant lion, buffalo weaver, rhinoceros beetle and the leopard tortoise.

Photos: Vaughan Jessnitz

Popularised by the charming children’s book of the same name by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, the Ugly Five is an allegorical tale about diversity and acceptance starring some of the most interesting animals in the bush.

Who’s that singing on the savannah? It’s the top-five ugly animals in Africa! The wildebeest, warthog, vulture, hyena and marabou stork swagger proudly across the savannah, rejoicing in their ugliness – and delighting their babies, who think they’re perfect just the way they are. Inspired by the real-life Ugly Five safari animals, Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s brand-new picture book is a jubilant celebration of animals who are often rather unloved. The funny, heart-warming rhyme is a joy to read aloud, while bold, comical illustrations bring the savannah spectacularly to life.

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