Animal family album: The incredible and touching photos that show parental love is universal

By Mail Online Reporter

Mum-brella: A baby elephant shelters from a storm beneath its mother in one of Steve Bloom's remarkable pictures

A stunning new book by a renowned photographer will melt your heart - with images of family love between members of the animal kingdom.

One photo shows a baby orangutan in Kalimantan, Borneo, perfectly mimicking its mother's hand movements - just like a toddler.

In another, taken in Africa's Masai Mara, a tiny baby elephant hides at the feet of its family - sheltering from pounding rain

Steve Bloom's 'My Favourite Animal Families' showcases some of the best pictures of baby animals that he has taken over the past 14 years.

On his travels to get these images Steve, who lives in Kent, has taken in every continent - including two trips to Antarctica.

The book's text is by author David Henry Wilson, whose works include the popular 'Jeremy James' children's series. Although 'My Favourite Animal Families' is aimed at kids, the pictures are so spectacular they will appeal to people of all ages.

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Spanning almost every habitat across the globe, from the African plains to the frozen Arctic, animals of all kinds have been captured on camera in acts of paternal caring.

Steve said: 'When shooting these pictures I was working to an underlying theme of anthropomorphism'
'I want to take kids reading this book into another world, but also to demonstrate that animals, like us, are sentient beings.'

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'A good example where this worked very well is the baby elephant. Humans don't like being lashed by the rain and the calf shows clearly here that elephants don't like it either. This little one was happy to shelter under its mother.'

'Through showing behaviour like this, I hope we can increase child readers' appreciation of the animals and help them to connect, so that they understand the importance of these species.'

'They exhibit some behaviours similar to humans and showing people this can hopefully stimulate interest and education.'

We ARE smiling! A mother and baby hippo in the Okavango Delta, Botswana, captured on film by Steve Bloom

Other astounding and touching images in the book show an adult chimpanzee giving an infant a helpful piggyback through tropical rainforests, while another shows a giant panda rubbing noses with its tiny cub.

Other animal families gracing the pages include cheetahs, zebras, hippos, bears, gorillas, lions, seals and orangutans.

Readers are treated to over seventy intimate photographs presenting fourteen species of wild animal, handpicked to show a wide variety of animal family types in different environments around the world.

A baby penguin an his proud parents pose for Steve's camera in the frozen wastes of Antarctica

Each animal family is featured over four pages, with Wilson's text exploring different facets of family life, from feeding and grooming to playing and hunting.

'My Favourite Animal Families' from Thames & Hudson is available for £9.99 in all good bookshops from August 16. Signed copies can be ordered from

source: dailymail