Tanzania Photography by Bill Richardson

Tanzania Photography by Bill Richardson

Mar 11, 2014| by administrator

Our last days in Tanzania were spent in the Ngorongoro Crater.  Many consider this crater to be the geographic marvel of Africa.  Others consider it to be the animal marvel of Africa.  It is the result of a huge volcano collapsing into itself leaving a large flat area surrounded by the volcano edges.  Access is very limited and well guarded.  This has allowed big tusked elephant and black rhino to survive the poaching that has exterminated them all over the rest of Africa.  It is also a wildlife paradise.

We saw lots of crowned cranes and had stopped to photograph some dancing in a field.  My tour leader yelled out "incoming" and I knew a bird was flying in giving us an opportunity to make a flight shot.  I was shooting my 600mm, handheld and resting on the lip of the roof's pop out panel openings.  I swung the big lens around, found the bird in my viewfinder, pumped the focus button and hit the shutter for the first shot below.  This is my best crowned crane in flight shot of the trip.  It is also the only crowned crane flight shot I have ever gotten in my life.


The next shot is an early morning reflection photo. The final crowned crane photo is of 2 dancing cranes. We were photographing a large flock of cranes and many were doing their mating dance. The tough part was getting a clear shot of a dancer without other birds being in the way.



A day or two later,  we were down by a hippo pool/marsh.  A big tusked elephant was there and offered this shot. Huge ivory.


My goal is to make images that are not the typical tourist safari photos.  Sometimes the image is unusual because of the subject and sometimes due to the situation.

This photo is of a masked weaver bird.  I was taking a mid-day siesta and heard voices outside our room.  Very annoying and even more annoying when I realized it was from people in our own group getting shots I was missing.  Not wanting to miss a photo opp, I grabbed my 600mm and joined them.  The subject was a masked weaver bird weaving its intricate nest 15 feet from my room.  I borrowed a chair which I used as a tripod substitute and took several shots.  The basket is what they build with an entrance at the bottom.  Very intricate weaving.  At a picnic later, I had one of these beautiful birds sitting in my hand.


This last photo is a composite of 2 shots of a leopard leaping from one branch to another.  There were 3 leopards, a mom and 2 cubs.  They were jumping and climbing through the tree just for the joy of being a leopard.  I love leopards!