2015, 11 African Photo Safari to Tanzania and Kenya

Renner Safaris

Dream, Explore, Discover

Pictures from our African photo safari to Tanzania and Kenya in September 2015.

Zebras Reflecting -4161Zebra Reflections

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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We were just beginning our photo safari in Tanzania and had been in our first park, Tarangire, for all of 15 minutes when we arrived at the waterhole. There were elephants, zebra, wildebeest, warthogs and baboons with birds flying in and out as well!  The waterhole was a mecca for wildlife! It was a thrilling start to our photo safari!

Waterhole Activity-1221Sizzling Action at the Waterhole 

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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Thank you to Best Safaris!

We have reached a milestone: 10 years and more than 50 African Photographic Safari groups that I have guided in Africa. Each trip has been tremendous!

I want to say a huge THANK YOU to my good friends, Prem Sharma, Gaby Gurolla and Prince De Silva and all the others who work at Best Safaris.  I have collaborated with them for over ten years now and they have made it possible for me to run 53 amazing African Photo Safaris to the best destinations in Africa for wildlife photography. They do a stellar job and work diligently at organizing our flights, lodging and transportation. They make certain that our trips run smoothly and each of our clients comes home feeling that it was so much more than expected.

Their many years of experience coupled with their extensive knowledge of travel in Africa has been extremely beneficial in the organization of each of our safaris.  Without them my safaris would not have been possible so again a big hearty THANK YOU VERY MUCH!

I look forward to arranging and running many more fantastic photo safaris with them in the future.

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We were photographing a cheetah with her three cubs when a long line of wildebeest suddenly came running over the hill. This quickly caught the mother’s attention and she rose up in an instant state of alertness. She watched and waited, all of her senses were focused on the running herd until selecting her target. To makes sure that her timing was right, she focused on the animal and broke into a controlled run before accelerating to full speed. At the end of a short, fast sprint she successfully took down a young wildebeest that provided a welcome meal for the family. A cheetah running at full speed is one of the most exciting things to see in nature!

Cheetah-The Chase Begins -6408The Chase Begins!

Masai Mara, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Cheetahs, like other cats, often display affection towards each other. I particularly enjoyed watching this cub tenderly licking mom’s face. Usually it is the mom doing the licking.

Cheetah Cub Cleaning Mother-Tender Moment

Masai Mara, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

While they are young, cheetah cubs have long fur on the back of their neck. The fur blends with long grasses creating an effective camouflage.

Cheetah Cubs  -6598 Two Cute Cubs

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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This pride of 15 lions in Ngorongoro crater was on the prowl for some breakfast when they spotted three cape buffalo grazing alone. After singling out one of the bulls, two of the larger females stalked closer and then gave chase.

Lion Pride in Ngorongoro Crater-4942Hungry Pride of Lions

Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

The buffalo was large, strong and fast enough that this time the lions were no match for him. They gave up the chase at which point the the buffalo turned to face them in a defiant challenge.  The lions simply returned to their pride and would hunt again at another time.

Cape Buffalo-5024Buffalo Bull

Ngorongoro Crater. Tanzania

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

A not so fortunate buffalo in Kenya’s Masai Mara became a meal for a pride of 11 lions.

Lioness on Buffalo KIll in the Masai Mara-6883Lion Eating Buffalo

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Experiencing a herd of elephants walking around your vehicle is exhilarating!  They are large in size but it is their silent movement that is captivating. Even as heavy as they are, their feet move silently through the grass on the dry dusty plains. The audible sound as they communicate with each other is often a low rumbling that sounds like a low growl.

Elephant Herd Approaching-6291The Matriarch Leads the Herd

Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Wild lovebirds at a water spot in Tarangire National Park. It is fun trying to catch them in flight upon takeoff or landing. They are extremely cautious and will fly away at the slightest sound or movement. Fortunately, they usually return soon.

Fischer's Lovebirds at Water-4796 A convenient hole in the trunk of a dried out Acacia was the perfect spot for this couple to build their nest.

Fischer's Loverbirds-4430  Lovebirds

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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 In a pond at the edge of the Silale Swamp in Tarangire a Marabou Stork and a Reedbuck share a waterhole.

Reed Buck and Marabou Stork-4669  Marabou Stork and Reedbuck

Tarangire National Park, 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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It is said that by bone structure, the Rock Hyrax is most closely related to elephants.  Hmmmmm. Interesting. What do you think?

Rock Hyrax-4502Rock Hyrax

Tarangire National Park, 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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On a number of occasions we have found this Serval Cat on its’ home territory in Ngorongoro Crater. On this particular morning it was out hunting. We watched it until it spotted a mouse that was hidden down in the long grass. It waited patiently until the precise moment to strike.

Serval Cat-1782

Serval Cat

Ngorongoro Crater. Tanzania

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Then it almost jumped right out of my picture! Yes, it caught the mouse and ate it while staying hidden down in the grass. Serval Cat Leaping -5232

Springing to Action

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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Elephants’ trunks are large and heavy. When they get tired of the weight some of them will rest it over their tusk while others just let the end of it lay on the ground.

Elephant Resting His Trunk on Tusk-2024 Resting a Heavy Trunk-5887These Trunks-They Do Get Heavy

Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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One day in Tarangire, this little owl was sleeping in a tree In front of one of our tents. From a short distance their camouflage helps them to blend perfectly with the tree branches.  One of the room stewards knew where it roosts and was kind enough to show us the bird.

African Scops Owl Sleeping-4745African Scops Owl Sleeping

Tarangire National Park, 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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One morning we were following the Talek River in search of a pride of lions that our guides had heard was in the area. Before long we spotted this male down in the river checking to see what remained from a previous kill. Not much food left there!

Lion on a KIll in the Talek River-8325Lion In The Talek River Bed

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Other members of the pride were adolescent males and females. They made their way down to the water for a drink.

Lion Pride in Talek River-8830Lions In The Talek River Bed

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

One of the young males began stalking a Hamerkop that let it get close enough to make things interesting before flying safely away.  Like typical cats they watched as it flew out of sight.

All Eyes on the Hammerkop-8889Lions Eyeing a Hamerkop Stork

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Fiscals look quite similar but have subtle differences, such as the length of the tail . The first one is a Common Fiscal and the second one is a long tailed Fiscal. Their black eyes are surrounded by black feathers making it challenging to capture good detail in a photograph.  By making sure that you take your photo when the sun light is reflecting in the eye, you will see better detail. When photographing birds or animals it is best to be patient and wait until the subject turns its’ head so the sun reflects in the eye. I call it a catch light.

Common Fiscal-5975-2Common Fiscal

Amboseli National Park, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015


Long Tailed Fiscal-5952 Long Tailed Fiscal

Amboseli National Park, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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Africa is experiencing another drought.  The dry conditions make it necessary for hippos to take refuge in unlikely mud holes when water is scarce. In the Crater we found two large hippos laying in a mud puddle that was barley big enough for the two of them. They were right next to the road giving us the opportunity to take some interesting close up photos.

Can Guess What I Am?-5539Mud Covered Hippo

Ngorongoro Crater. Tanzania

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

Hippo Keeps His Eye on African Jacana-5870Hippo Keeping His Eye on an African Jacana

Amboseli National Park, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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The diversity of birds and wildlife in many parts of Africa is tremendous! It offers us many wonderful photographic opportunities. Here we had the elephant, geese, pelicans, egrets with hippos in the background. Each day on safari is different because we focus not only on the variety but also on behavior which is what keeps the animals interesting.

Elephant, Pelicans and Geese in Marsh-5843Elephant and Bird Life

Amboseli National Park, Kenya

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 nice break from the daily routine can be a good thing. These big cats can sleep anywhere!

Lion on the Rocks-5318Lion in Dreamland

Ngorongoro Crater. 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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Hyenas are opportunists. They will gladly take leftovers from lions, leopards, cheetahs or almost anything. They are sometimes referred to as the trash collectors of the bush.

Spotted Hyena with Zebra Skin-4877

Hyena Carrying Zebra Skin

Ambosel National Parki, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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At first I wasn’t sure if they were making fire or just smoke. The men were persistent and soon flickering yellow flames appeared and the fire began to dance.

Masai Making Fire-7282Masai Warriors Making Fire

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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Vervet Monkeys are not especially fond of getting wet, so they avoid water if possible.

Vervet Monkey Leaping Over Water-1382

Vervet Monkey Leaping Over Water

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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A mother Olive baboon carrying her baby.  When the whole troop is on the move, the little one must hang on really tight so it doesn’t fall off!  I sometimes wonder what that must feel like to the mother.

Baboon Carrying Baby-4372

Baboon Carrying Baby

Ambosel National Park, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

This mother looks pretty happy. Right? Or is she just extremely patient with the little one?

Baboons Grooming and Bonding-1955One of the Joys of Motherhood

Ambosel National Park, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

 

Baby Olive Baboon-5759Baby Olive Baboon

Ambosel National Park, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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 In good light, even a Topi scratching his ear can be an interesting picture. Always watch for the light!

If It Itches, Scratch It, Topi-7730If It Itches, Scratch It – Topi

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                     ( Sold Out ) July 16 – Aug.2, 2015 Itinerary and Pricing
Tanzania and Kenya-17-Days – Season for Great Migration Crossings at the Mara River ( Sold Out ) 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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Some scenes from the migration in September.

 Wildebeest in the Setting Sun-Wildebeest with Setting Sun

 Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

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

 Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

It is critical that the runway is clear of animals for a safe landing. Occasionally, the pilot will need to make several passes buzzing over the runway to move the animals off.

Clearing the Runway-7441

This year the herds were bigger than ever!  It was wild along the river!

Wildebeest Gathering in the Masai Mara-6840

Wildebeest Grazing

Wildebeest Frenzy-8525Dropping into the Riverbed

Wildebeest in River Bed-7327Pandemonium

Wildebeest on the Move-8500

Light, Shadow and Dust

Wildebeest Crossing the Mara River-7119Hurrying Across the River

With massive crocodiles lounging at the water’s edge, I would be in a mad rush to exit the water too! These guys were huge, not very friendly looking and they had big, sharp teeth!

Crocodiles Sunbathing-7083Massive Crocodiles

Crossing the Mara River-7021

After successfully crossing the river in a panic, they will often return for a drink.

Wildebeest Drinking-8622Wildebeest Drinking

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

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

Copyright: Paul Renner, 2015

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As we were making our way into Ngorongoro Crater we spotted this beautiful bird perched on a rock at the edge of the road.

 

African Hoopoe-4806African Hoopoe

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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Young lions playing. Adolescent Lions Playing-7194Young lions found these sticks to be quite entertaining.

Adolescent Lion Biting Stick-7293


Lion's  Early Morning Stroll in the Masai Mara-8355  Handsome Lion in The Masai Mara

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 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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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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Calm Before the Storm-6873
Calm Before The Storm

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 to Tanzania and Kenya in February next year!  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!

Our safaris make a wonderful anniversary, Christmas or graduation gift that will be remembered and cherished for a lifetime!

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

For more safari information, prices and itineraries click here.

Please feel free to call me at (949) 295-3136 or contact me by email with any questions you may have regarding our safaris.

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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