2015, 08 African Photo Safari to Tanzania and Kenya

Renner Safaris

Dream, Explore, Discover

We had a sensational African photo safari toTanzania and Kenya in July. The variety and huge numbers of wildlife made for a very exciting trip not only for photography but also for those who just wanted to watch and enjoy wildlife behavior.

Muddy Faced Lion--2

In the Serengeti we came upon a pride of lions that began stalking a herd of Thompson’s Gazelle. There was about 100 yards of open space between the lions and gazelle so I knew it would be a long shot for the lions to catch one of the speedy little gazelles. About that time the gazelle spotted the lions and made a hasty retreat for safety. The lions began walking toward where the area gazelle had just been. One of the large females stopped, put her nose up in the air and began walking out into what looked like a large dried mud flat. Our guide said that possibly a gazelle had sunk into the mud, was unable to escape and died.

The photos of the lions were taken in Serengeti National Park with a Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM. Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Here is how clean and handsome they looked just before entering the mud!

Lion With Cub-2006

The large female made her way to the center of the dried mud flat when suddenly her front legs broke through the crust. She found herself chest deep in soft mud. She quickly retreated to solid ground. Three cubs had followed her out on the mud and were light enough that they didn’t sink in. They found the gazelle and began eating. That was when Dad, the larger male, decided he wanted in on the feast too. He began making his way toward the gazelle but sank deep into the mud. He powered his way to the meat where he began growling and snapping warnings to the cubs as he began to eat. They completely ignored his growling and snarling and continued taking bites of the mud covered gazelle. Eventually, the gazelle sank down into the mud making it difficult for the lions to eat but they continued trying anyway.

Mud Feast-2157

Dad continued breaking up the dried mud and eventually became frustrated with one of the cubs who would not quit eating. He put his large paw over the cub’s back, stuffing the poor little guy down under the mud and held his paw on him so it couldn’t eat or catch a breath. We began to worry for the cubs safety!

Lions in the Mud-2107

When Dad finally released him, it appeared like the cub didn’t even stop for a breath, but instead went straight for the meat and continued eating.

Lions Eating a Gazelle in the Mud-2142

Suddenly one of the cubs made a quick get away with a leg from the gazelle! When he had cleared the mud pit he put down the meat to eat. Just then another cub went towards him so he grabbed his prize and ran into the bushes with it. He did not want to share his prize!

Lion Cub Escaping the Mud-2235

The other two cubs looked a little disgusted by their predicament and stopped to rest at the edge the mud.

Lion Cubs in the Mud-2178

Lion Pride in Mud-8752

Lions in the Mud 

Serengeti National Park,Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Elephants are one of my favorite animals to photograph. I am fascinated by their family dynamics, not only by the way that they protect each other but also in the ways that they help each other when in need. Because of their size and interesting shape, photographing them it is often challenging. Photos of the whole elephant can be boring unless you can also capture elements of interest in the photo. I find animal behavior to be the key to making more interesting photos. The following elephants were all photographed on this July safari.

Great Bull Elephant-2418

Billowing Dust

Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Elephants love wallowing in the mud. Elephant Mud Bath-0299

Mud Bath

Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

This old bull reminded me of a prize fighter that though still powerful, had lived past his prime. He actually made a mock charge at us as we drove by. Even a mock charge raises the hair on the back of my neck! It is always exciting!

Gnarley Old Bull-8444

Old One Tusker

Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Applying dust works as sunscreen and bug repellant.Elephant Blowing Dust-0140

Applying Dust

Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Elephant and Bee Eater-2471

The Bull and the Bee Eater

Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Judging by the tip of his trunk, this old bull looks like he has had a tough life. He is missing a good portion of his trunk. I am just guessing that it could have been bitten off by a crocodile or possibly he had been caught in a poacher’s snare. Either way it made his life more difficult but he has still survived to a ripe old age. They are tough and resilient!

Old Bull Missing Tip of Trunk -0547

Grazing on Greens

Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Mother and babies are always popular.
Elephant Trunks-8358

Trunks

Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

 

Elephant and Baby in Road-8707

Traveling Companions

 Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

 

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A cheetah managed to climb to the top of one of our vehicles and looked quite majestic while scanning the plains for gazelle. The cheetahs have learned that from the top of a safari Land Cruiser they can get better view of the surrounding plains. For them it is much like us climbing a ladder!Cheetah on Roof of Vehicle-3509

Shopping for Lunch

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

 

While the family ate, the mother would frequently look up to check for other predators that would love to steal the meal she had just caught for the family. 
Cheetah Mother's Watchful Eye-0370

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Red and Yellow Barbett

 Tarangire National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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The cooing of doves in Africa soothes my soul. In the early mornings and often throughout the day, their gentle cooing is frequently heard. I don’t normally stop to photograph them but when I saw the lighting on this bird, together with this background I thought it was worth a stop.  
Ring Necked Dove-1352

Ring Necked Dove

 Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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I enjoyed watching monkeys outside of my room in Amboseli. This inquisitive little Vervet Monkey was curious and wanted a better look at my camera.Curious Young Vervet Monkey-9371

Curious Young Vervet Monkey

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

One must be careful to lock the door to your room because the naughty monkeys will act like they are not interested in entering until you turn your back. They are just looking for snacks or fruit but are not opposed to stealing shiny objects either. An adult male was just outside my door yawning and looked like I needn’t worry about him trying to get into my room. I knew better! I would not want to get bitten by one of these guys but they are certainly entertaining to watch.

Vervet Monkey Yawning -9354

Vervet Monkey Yawning

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Africa is a bird watchers’ paradise.  Most parks contain at least 350 different species of birds.  Some contain many more!Spur-Winged Plover-9449

 Spur-Winged Plover

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Giraffe are another one of my favorite animals and photographing them can often be challenging as well. Late one morning we found a herd of 43 giraffe. It was the largest gathering of giraffe that I have seen at one time. There were big ones, little ones and even littler ones. It was late in the morning and the light was harsh but we still stopped and took many photos. What we saw was amazing!

Zebra Watching Giraffe-0324

Zebra Watching Giraffe Family

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Even the zebra was curious about the two young giraffes. One baby looked to be only a day or two old. The new mother appeared quite proud of her new baby and gave it lots of loving attention.

Mother Licking Baby Masai Giraffe-

Mother Cleaning Baby Giraffe

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Mother Kissing Baby Masai Giraffe-

Tender Moment

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

One could call this a giraffe forest.

Giraffe Forest-3265

Giraffe Forest

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon 18-135mm

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Even after seeing giraffe eating acacia thorns many times I am still amazed that they  can eat the branches without being wounded by the long, sharp thorns.

Giraffe Feeding on Acacia Tree-

Giraffe Eating Acacia Tree

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Feast your eyes on our upcoming 2016 safaris.

Leopard Eyes-0796

2016 Safari Dates

I am proud to lead each of these outstanding luxury photo safaris and hope you will be able to join me for your tip of a lifetime! The safaris often sell out quickly so if you are considering joining us in 2016 contact us for your registration forms and register as soon as possible so you don’t miss out on your trip of a lifetime!

Tanzania and Kenya – Birthing Season with the Great Migration  Jan 31-Feb 17, 2016 Itinerary and Pricing
Botswana – Photograph in four of Africa’s most exciting wildlife viewing locations.  (Sold Out) May 15-June 1, 2016 Itinerary and Pricing
Tanzania – Season for Great Migration Crossings at the Mara River July 10 – 26, 2016 Itinerary and Pricing
Tanzania and Kenya – Season for Great Migration Crossings at the Mara River Aug. 28 – Sept. 13, 2016 Itinerary and Pricing
Rwanda Mountain Gorilla Trek  Sept. 13 – 17, 2016 Itinerary and Pricing 
South Africa Photo Safari  Sept 16-Oct 2, 2016 Itinerary and Pricing 
 Namibia Photo Safari Sept 30-Oct. 19, 2016 Itinerary and Pricing 

To reserve your space on our photo safaris, please call Paul Renner at (949) 295-3136, or email him at: paulrenner3@cox.net or ask for Prem Sharma or Gaby Gurrola at Best Safaris (800) 757-6625 The above itinerary dates may be subject to change due to accommodation availability at the time of booking.

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African Photo Safaris In 2015

 

Tanzania and Kenya – 18 days – Birthing Season with the Great Migration  Feb 1-18, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing
Botswana – Photograph in four of Africa’s most exciting wildlife viewing locations.  ( Sold Out ) May 12-24, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing
Tanzania and Kenya-17-Days – Season for Great Migration Crossings at the Mara River                      ( 3 space have just opened up ) July 16 – Aug.2, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing
Tanzania and Kenya-17-Days – Season for Great Migration Crossings at the Mara River ( 1 single space available ) Aug. 28 – Sept. 13, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing
Rwanda Mountain Gorilla Trek Sold Out ) Sept. 13 – 17, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing
South Africa Photo Safari ~  ( Sold Out ) Sept 17-Oct 3, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing
 Namibia Photo Safari Sold Out )  Oct. 3-19, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing

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We had great activity at the Hippo Pool in the Serengeti.  Not only did a number of hippos actually yawn for us but there was also a crocodile savagely eating what looked like another crocodile!

Hippo Yawning-2516-2

Hippo Yawning

 Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

 Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

 Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

 Crocodile Eating Crocodile-2675

Crocodile Eating Crocodile

Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Crocodile Eating Crocodile-2702

Crocodile Eating Crocodile

Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Each time we would stop for a picnic lunch these beautiful birds would came to visit hoping we would either feed them or drop some crumbs they could gather.  
Superb Starling 2-1056

Superb Starling

 Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

 Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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She came to my window and peered through the glass to see if there was anything that caught her fancy.  The baboons  have learned to use the doorknob to open doors so it is a good idea to keep the door locked even when in your own room.

Baboon at My Window-2839

Baboon at My Window

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Baby baboons are just too cute!  When I saw this one peering around the mother I quickly grabbed my camera.

Mother and Baby Baboon7403

Mother and Baby Baboon

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015


Mothers of most animals usually exhibit a tremendous amount of tolerance and patience with their young.  Patient Mother Baboon-9742

Patient Mother with Baby Baboon

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Male Impala-9873

Impala on Ridge 

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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 Zebras can be so serene looking but don’t be fooled by their peaceful looks.

Zebras Walking in Serengeti-8734

Zebras in the Serengeti

Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Boys will be boys! They are often up to their competitive fighting games. Just when it looked like one was going to take the advantage, a swift kick from the other quickly changed the final outcome!
Zebras Fighting-9134

Zebra Ready To Bite

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Zebras Fighting Near Miss-9136

Stop That Biting!

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Photographing zebras in water is always great but throw in beautiful, early morning light and it is even better!
Zebras Drinking-9961

Zebra Drinking

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Even wildebeest look better in in early morning light.
Wildebeest Drinking-0014

Wildebeest Quenching His Thirst

Amboseli, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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This is a Cape Buffalo photographed from two different perspectives.  Do you have a favorite?

Cape Buffalo 2-1444

Eye of the Cape Buffalo 1

Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Cape Buffalo 1-

Eye of the Cape Buffalo 2

Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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One afternoon in the Serengeti, while girls were sunbathing, a few zebra pleasantly surprised them when they stopped to drink from the swimming pool. Excitement can be almost anywhere on a Renner Safari!Zebras and Sunbathers-8796

 Zebras and Sunbathers at the Swimming Pool

Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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The lioness was hunting alone. She looked hungry and was eyeing a large herd of wildebeest and zebra that was grazing at the top of the hill. Experience had taught her that distance without cover for her hide would equal no meal.  Several of the zebra had already spotted her so rather than wasting her energy on a futile hunt she reluctantly left them and moved on to search for something she could surprise.
Lion Making a Plan-3758

Wishful Thinking

Masai Mara, Kenya

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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I am really excited about leading our July 2016 to Tanzania! It will be all in Tanzania and will of course include the usual fantastic parks in northern Tanzania. Chartered airplanes will   fly us south to two more beautiful but less visited parks in southern Tanzania called Ruaha and Selous. In July I went on a scouting trip in preparation for our upcoming safari. Flying south, from the Serengeti, I was enthralled to fly over the southern end of Lake Eyasi and then over the Singida area.  This area was home for me as a child so it was fascinating to see it from the air.  I was taken by the contrast and shapes between the land and the water that looked like abstract art.

Lake Eyasi 1-

Water Flowing from Lake Eyasi

 Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 18-135mm

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

We continued flying south over the Singida area.  Singida was the small town where my parents would go once a month to buy what ever supplies or canned goods they needed from a store called Central Provisions. It was owned and operated by a very nice Indian family and from them we could order what ever we needed.  Sometimes it would take months to arrive but they would get what ever supplies we wanted from around the world. Between the clouds I could see the lakes where I remembered having family picnics when we would go to Singida.  Fond memories of my fun childhood days in Tanzania came flooding back.

Flying over Singida Area-7371

Flying Over Singida Area

 Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF 18-135mm

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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The sun was directly behind these fighting hippos and there was no way to get around to the other side of them. I exposed for the highlights then lightened the shadows in Camera Raw. I feel it is an interesting photo because of their action. The hippo facing the camera was at a slight disadvantage because he is missing his lower right tusk. They stood challenging each other for over 10 minutes.  It was all about who gets the deeper water hole!
Hippos Fighting-7568

Hippo Standoff

Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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This female greater kudu was curious about my camera and watched intently while I photographed her. Check out the hair in those ears!

Female Greater Kudu-

Female Greater Kudu

Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Lions Mating-8094

 Mating Lions

Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Not only were there abundant animals in Ruaha but the birds were awesome as well!  I had not previously seen a Von der Decken’s Hornbill.

Von Der Decken's Hornbill-

Von der Decken’s Hornbill

Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Grey Chanting Gosh Hawk with Magpie Shrike-7926Grey Chanting Goshawk with Magpie Shrike

Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Impala watched intently after  a cheetah took down a former member of their herd.

Impalas Looking -8218

Female Impalas

Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II, Lens: Canon EF200-400mm f/4L IS USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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The permanent tented camps and safari lodges we use while on safari are very nice accommodations. Each unit includes an attached bathroom with hot and cold running water, sink and tub or shower. The lodges and tents are set in beautiful locations often along rivers or overlooking scenic valleys.

Tented Camp-5138Beds in one of the tented camps we stayed at in Linyante. We are not exactly roughing it.


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 Imagine yourself soaring in a hot air balloon over the great migration. The sun is rising to a new day and the sky is spectacular!  You can do this on a Renner Safari in Africa!Hot Air Baloons Over Migration-3423-2
Hot Air Ballons at Sunrise Over Masai Mara-3444

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At the close of another beautiful day in Kenya a herd of elephants gathers on the dry lakebed in Amboseli.

Dry, Dusty Evening-9515


Take the road less traveled and join us on an African photo safari to experience the wonders of nature and create your own memories to share for a lifetime.

Road In The Mara-3326

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Cheetah On Hood of Vehicle-3470

Thrilling Experiences Create Lifelong Memories

Canon EOS-7D, Lens: Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Elephant At Sunrise-
 Elephant in Amboseli

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, Lens: Canon 70-200mm f/2.8

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Each of our safaris has been a tremendous photographic experience!  I can hardly wait to return next week to Tanzania and Kenya!  Why don’t you join us on one of our safaris for the enriching experience of capturing your own photos in the wilds of Africa!

Please feel free to forward the newsletter on to friends who might enjoy it.

For more safari information, prices and itineraries click here.

I hope that you will be able to join us on one of our safaris in the not so distant future. It will be your trip of a lifetime!

Enjoy each day.

Paul Renner

paulrenner3@cox.net

www.rennersafaris.com

(949) 295-3136

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