Rocco's Tanzania Photo Album

Mar 18th, 2006, 06:07 PM
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 421
Rocco, your pictures are beautiful! I think I may have to plan a trip to Tanzania next. It would be nice to know how you compare your time in Tanzania with your experiences in Zambia (camps, game viewing, ease of getting to and from your camps). Thanks.
raelond is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 08:12 PM
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Rocco...great absolutely fabulous pictures. Loved the hyena on it's back...just like one of my dogs! Some of the pics seem almost to be like panarama. Is that just from cropping? I noted that some of the pics of Maasai are dark in the faces. Without using flash, it must be really hard to get such dark faces when they are in sunlight. Did you push the exposures on any of them? If so, what ISO?

You're making me salivate and I can't wait till my June trip. Thanks again.
martync is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 11:19 PM
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I really enjoyed your beautiful photos: especially the ones of the tree climbing lion.



Mar 19th, 2006, 04:11 AM
Join Date: Dec 2005
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Hi Rocco,

Really pleased to see some of your photos up, I have been a bit slow as I missed being on the computer yesterday, must have been busy for a change!

You have some fabulous photos, cannot wait to see some more. I have put comments on some. One thing was the black rhino and big tusked ele in the crater? Also let me know if the lions in the crater, particularly the cubs, looked in good condition, as in Feb 2001, they looked pretty shocking and I always wondered if not a bit inbred. Really hoping new males have entered the picture!
Kind regards,
KayeN is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 04:58 AM
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Mar 19th, 2006, 06:14 AM
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Beautiful album. So many good lion pictures from the hunt to the water shots to the family photo. I liked the giraffe and ostrich race, an unusual combination. Your chameleon picture was incredibly detailed. The little dikdik antelope actually looked regal in his pose. Hope your foot was not bothering you during these wonderful scenes.

Welcome home.
atravelynn is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 07:06 AM
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Great stuff! I left a few comments in your gallery. What is the small antelope (I have lots of trouble with those guys) -- is it a klipspringer? Nice photo of the eland!
thit_cho is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 07:08 AM
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It's a Tommie.
We usually see them from the side or back with tail swooshing.
This one is head on and they have such cute faces.
Mar 19th, 2006, 07:31 AM
Original Poster
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Thit Cho,

You are is a klipspringer that was high on the escarpment in Lake Manyara.

The eland photo is very special to me because, though numerous, they are incredibly shy animals and do not allow vehicles to approach close before trotting off. Plus, each elands and hartebeests have such beautiful strides in their step.


You are correct...each the black rhino and the big tusked elephant are, in fact, in the Crater. Only slapping on my 1.4x teleconvertor to my fully extended 80-400mm lens allowed me to get those photos of the black rhino. Those photos were taken at an effective 896mm's.

I did not see any cubs in the Crater. The photos of the lion kill, as well as the tree climbing lion and lion cubs, were all taken in the Ndutu area of the Serengeti.


I frequently used ISO's up to ISO 800, and even ISO 1600 on occasion. My boxing photography taught me not to fear using ISO 1600 on my Canon 20d, as it is the only way to get quality photos in imperfect lighting conditions when shooting at a minimum of 1/640th of a second.

The majority of my photos, however, were taken at ISO 200, and mid-day, I wouild drop all the way to ISO 100. The most important thing for me was to have my shutter speed fast enough to ensure crisp photos.


Without question, there is far more wildlife around the Migration and in the Ngorongoro Crater than in South Luangwa and the Sabi Sand. However, the trade off is that there are far more visitors. At one lion pride sighting in the Crater (while they were shading themselves under the vehicles) there were, and I counted, SEVENTEEN vehicles.

Also, I found the food, accomodations, vehicles and guiding more to my liking in Southern Africa.

However, I have never seen a pride of 18 lions, as I did in Ndutu, while in Southern Africa, nor have I ever seen a tree climbing lion. My Nomad guide, who has been guiding for over five years all over Tanzania (Katavi, Selous and Ruaha included), had never seen an an adult male lion climb a tree and he was so excited by the event that he grabbed my spare camera and started shooting photos as fast as he could!

The highlight of Tanzania for me was definitely all of the lions. While some were definitely lazy (having already stuffed themselves silly with baby wildebeests or buffalo), the pride of 18 that I spent time with at Ndutu was a killing machine, and we had the pleasure of hearing them each night from camp. On the morning of the baby wildebeest kill that I photographed, they had already killed a buffalo and two wildebeest, but being opportunitist hunters, they still did not spare that baby wildebeest.

I do think accomdoation choices for luxury lodging is quite limited in Ngorongoro Crater and the southern part of the Serengeti. However, it was worth every cent spent to stay at the Crater Lodge, which each Alexsandra and I really loved. Now that CCAfrica has launched their Tanzania Under Canvas option, following the migration much as Nomad does, I think this is an excellent option for anyone planning a future visit.

Thanks for all the feedback thus far on my photos. More will surely follow soon and I will let you know when they are up.
Roccco is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 08:10 AM
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Thanks Roccco,

Itís good to see such nice wet looking pictures. I loved the chameleon, the little ele scratching himself and the baby ele at the riverside. There are some really nice zebra pictures. The lion chasing the poor baby wildebeest, the lion licking session, the lion crossing the water, the handsome jackal, the klipspringer, the incredible tree climbing lion, the giraffe fight, the tusker, the hyena on its back, the eland Ė I canít decide on a favourite.

Nyamera is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 08:38 AM
Join Date: Jan 2006
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Welcome back, Rocco, and thanks for the pics! We're getting so excited about our trip at the end of May and seeing those photos made Fred and I suddenly realize what we've signed on for~wow!

'Hope the toe is feeling better. We await your full trip report!
mairseydotes is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 08:52 AM
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Had a very lazy day yesterday and didn't even turn the computer on let alone get dressed after my shower...

So this was a lovely surprise switching the PC on today!

Great job Rocco.

The biggest single area of improvement for me is in composition - you're often positioning animals off-centre so they are looking into the space and that makes some of your images much stronger. Some great shots!
Kavey is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 09:01 AM
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Wow! These photos are awesome. I loved the ones of the chameleon and the lion in the tree. And the ones of the people looked straight out of National Geographic!
I can't wait to see the rest. Thanks for sharing, Rocco.
panecott is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 09:15 AM
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Fabulous pictures. You're going to make a lion person out of me after all!
Thank you for sharing your awesome pictures.

Can't wait for the trip report

JanGoss is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 09:28 AM
Join Date: Oct 2004
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I don't think I've seen better pictures of the wildlife in a few of my favorite places in a long time!

Just an awesome job! Be very proud!

Rocco, what was the Leopard Tours connection?
climbhighsleeplow is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 10:15 AM
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well, almost--I loved the mama and baby elephant and the lion in the tree.
CarrieS is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 10:17 AM
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The only reason why Leopard Tours vehicle is pictured is because Alexsandra got to chatting with one of the guides from Leopard Tours and I just had her pose with our MKSC guide and the Leopard Tours guide. I did not really intend to feature the Leopard Tours vehicle for any reason.

Thanks to all for the continued feedback.
Roccco is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 11:50 AM
Join Date: May 2004
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Hi Rocco:
Like Kavey, I logged on today to find these great photos. We really enjoyed our time with that same lion pride, but did not see the male lions with them. The tree climbing shots are phenomenal.

I can understand why the eland shot is special to you --we never could get close enough to get a decent photo. The best opportunity came at Loliondo but it was thwarted by a tse tse fly attack.

What is the black bird with the red? I do not remember seeing that--or perhaps you have a better shot than I ever saw.

Looking forward to the rest and, of course, your trip report.
bat is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 11:59 AM
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BTW, I can't believe how much greener it was when you were there. I had read that the green "popped" very quickly. I can see this from your photos.
bat is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 12:58 PM
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Hi Rocco,
Many thanks for sharing photos. Was it cloudy (rainy) much of the time, very little sun?
For portraits in sunlight or strong daylight I almost always use flash. (And "turn down" the flash exposure by about 1/2 stop) Although I have to admit I've little experience taking portraits of dark complexion (Maasai) people.
This includes animal portraits in the sun, if close enough. Sometimes if the animal is up among tree limbs a little flash will fill in the very dark shadows and let the blue sky show. (Instead of the sky being washed out white). Guess what I'm trying to say is that we should experiment using flash more, it isn't only for dark rooms.
regards - tom
cary999 is offline  

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