Once the long dry season begins in east Africa, animals make great treks to visit those special places where water can usually be found year-round. The Water Hole diorama re-creates such a site where animals gather like desert travelers at an oasis.
Not all water holes are as serene as this scene. They are often places of great danger where predators such as lions, leopards, or hyenas lie in wait. In fact, painting the color studies for the background of this diorama was so dangerous that field artist William R. Leigh required a gun bearer to watch over him lest he become prey himself while absorbed in his work.