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Africa GeographicNews Desk

Captive lion breeding is here to stay, says DEA

The Department of Environmental Affairs has rejected the Portfolio Committee’s resolution to end the captive breeding of lions.

New research study looks to empower Namibian communities to champion environmental conservation

A new environmental research and education organisation will work with rural communities in Namibia to promote nature and wildlife conservation.

Luxury lodge closes as loggers move in to make way for dam in Selous Game Reserve

Azura Selous, a luxury game lodge situated along the banks of the Great Ruaha River in the remote Selous Game Reserve in southern Tanzania, has announced its sudden closure due to the unexpected arrival of loggers in the area.

Botswana government questions elephant survey report by Elephants Without Borders

Botswana’s government has questioned a new report by Elephants Without Borders detailing their 2018 elephant aerial survey.

Namibia culls hyenas to save its wild / feral horses

Shooting hyenas to save wild horses raises heated debate about whether conservation authorities should intervene between endemic wildlife and ‘feral’ animals.

Video: Elephant experts condemn Zimbabwe’s inhumane capture of wild baby elephants for Chinese zoos

Elephant experts condemn Zimbabwe’s inhumane capture of wild baby elephants for Chinese zoos as video emerges showing animals in distress.

Hunting ban in Botswana should be lifted says government committee, and elephants culled

Hunting ban should be lifted and elephants culled, says Botswana’s government committee. Other recommendations include growth of the hunting industry, some animal migration routes closed and human-wildlife conflict strategies implemented.

NEWS WRAP: ‘Ivory Queen’ sentenced to 15 years + rangers get closer to capturing escaped lion

In this week’s news wrap a prominent Chinese businesswoman dubbed the “Ivory Queen” was sentenced to 15 years in prison by a Tanzanian court for smuggling the tusks of more than 350 elephants; rangers have edged closer to catching a lion that has escaped Karoo National Park; four alleged rhino poachers, including a SANParks employee, were arrested in Kruger National Park; and China’s efforts to ban ivory trade have received worldwide acclaim as the effects of its strict measures are starting to be felt.

Researchers discover tiny new frog species in Ethiopia

A new species of puddle frog has just been discovered by researchers on the unexplored and isolated Bibita Mountain in southwestern Ethiopia.

Updated rhino poaching stats – what is not being disclosed – comment from award-winning filmmakers

Award-winning filmmakers Susan Scott and Bonné de Bod comment on the latest rhino poaching statistics released by the Department of Environmental Affairs.

Award-winning STROOP now available via download

Acclaimed South African documentary ‘STROOP’ continues award sweep… and releases on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Vimeo.

NEWS WRAP: Record seizure of pangolin scales + cameras find lone female elephant roaming Knysna forest

In this week’s news wrap Hong Kong customs have seized a record haul of pangolin scales bound for Vietnam; camera-trap technology has captured what is suspected to be the last elephant in Knysna forest; the South Africa parliament has attacked the Kruger agreement with neighbouring private reserves; Uganda seized ivory and pangolin scales worth an estimated $8 million; 20 endangered vultures die of poisoning near the Maasai Mara; thousands of baby flamingos have been rescued in South Africa as drought has put their breeding ground in peril; and a new widow spider species has been discovered – the first in 29 years.

Pangolin rescued from poachers in Limpopo

Earlier this February, Welgevonden Game Reserve’s anti-poaching unit received word of a pangolin sale which they intercepted, arresting five suspects and detaining two.

Parliament attacks Kruger agreement with neighbouring private reserves

The South African Parliament has strongly criticised South African National Parks for signing a formal agreement on 5th December to ratify a long-standing cooperation arrangement between Kruger National Park and several neighbouring private and community game reserves, which together form an area known as “Greater Kruger”.

Special airlift for flamingo chicks in peril

A special airlift for thousands of baby flamingos is under way in South Africa as drought has put their breeding ground in peril.

First new widow spider species discovered in 29 years

Potentially the largest widow spider in the world has been discovered in the critically endangered sand forest of South Africa.

NEWS WRAP: Six animals electrocuted in Kruger + wildlife trafficking kingpin’s case dismissed

In this week’s news wrap a freak accident in the Kruger National Park has resulted in six animals, including a white rhino and two lions, being electrocuted; a suspected wildlife trafficking kingpin accused of smuggling $1 million worth of rhino horns to Thailand has had the case against him dismissed; two people were arrested at O.R Tambo International Airport after police found R2 million worth of rhino horn hidden in their luggage; and Vietnam customs forces have discovered nearly 1.4 tonnes of pangolin scales and 20 elephant tusks hidden inside a container shipped from Nigeria.

NEWS WRAP: Hong Kong failing to tackle illegal wildlife trade + elephant poaching numbers down in Tanzania

In this week’s news wrap a new study has revealed that Hong Kong’s illegal wildlife trade is contributing to a global extinction crisis; the Tanzanian government announced that elephant poaching has declined in Tanzania’s national parks; China customs dismantled a major ivory trafficking syndicate after arrests were made; and a new Tanzanian reserve has been declared in order to protect invaluable forest.

New Tanzanian reserve declared to protect invaluable forest

A rich forest teeming with unique and endangered wildlife in Tanzania has finally been placed under protection, supported by World Land Trust and other partners.

Video: Third arrest made as China customs dismantle major ivory trafficking syndicate

Chinese authorities have nabbed all three identified members of a major ivory trafficking syndicate first exposed by the London-based Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) in 2017.

2 Countries want changes to white rhino CITES listings, to permit trade

Proposed changes in CITES have been released, with Namibia proposing to downlist its population of white rhinos to Appendix II, to allow only international commercial trade in live animals and hunting trophies, and Eswatini seeks to allow unrestricted international commercial trade in all specimens of its white rhino population, which is currently included in Appendix II.

Former Botswana President Khama appointed as founding patron of Tuli Conservation Trust

Tuli Conservation Trust is proud to announce the appointment of former President of Botswana, His Excellency Lieutenant General Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama, as its founding patron.

Africa is divided over ivory trade ahead of wildlife meeting

Several African countries with some of the world’s largest elephant populations will push this year for looser controls on legal ivory trade, while another group of countries on the continent says more restrictions are the best way to curb the illegal killing of elephants for their tusks.

World’s rarest duck released back into the wild

A duck thought to be extinct for 15 years has been brought back from the brink and given a new home on a remote lake in Madagascar.

Somaliland wildlife medicine and husbandry: new partnership announced

The Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF) has announced a new international partnership between European and African institutions to enhance Somaliland’s ability to treat and care for confiscated wildlife.

Tragic news: Field ranger killed by elephant in Madikwe Game Reserve

In a tragic incident, a field ranger has died after being attacked by an elephant bull in musth in Madikwe Game Reserve.

4 Elephants die as mercy mission goes wrong during heatwave

Tragedy as four elephant bulls that were causing havoc in the Gravelotte area in Limpopo die during relocation attempt.

Elephant experts respond regarding proposed citrus farm on Kruger border

Elephants Alive has released a comprehensive report regarding the proposed 120ha citrus farm development on the border of the Greater Kruger National Park.

NEWS WRAP: Famous super tusker rescued + 2.8 tonnes of pangolin scales torched

In this week’s news wrap the famous super tusker elephant, Tim, was rescued from certain death; Malaysia torched 2.8 tonnes of African pangolin scales; the Kruger National Park 10-year management plan was approved by acting Environmental Affairs Minister; the lion bone quota was reduced to 800 skeletons from 1,500; an American woman was attacked by a hippo after her canoe capsized on the Zambezi River; an anthrax outbreak in Mana Pools in Zimbabwe has killed 100 impala; and eight West African giraffe have been reintroduced to Gadabedji Biosphere Reserve in Niger after a 50-year absence.

Malaysia torches 2.8 tonnes of African pangolin scales

Malaysia on Thursday torched nearly three tonnes of seized scales of endangered pangolins worth $9 million in a bid to deter illegal wildlife trafficking from Africa.

Animal advocacy course – raising awareness through effective campaigning

Join Chris Mercer from Campaign Against Canned Hunting for a week-long course on Animal Advocacy.

West African giraffe return to Gadabedji after 50 years of absence

Eight West African giraffe travelled over 800 kilometres in 48 hours to be safely re-introduced to the Gadabedji Biosphere Reserve in Niger, after an absence of almost 50 years.

Famous super tusker Tim rescued from certain death

Tim, an icon of Amboseli and one of Africa’s largest and most magnificent elephants, has been rescued from certain death.

Lion bone quota now reduced to 800 skeletons from 1,500

The quota for the lion bone trade has been reduced from 1,500 to 800 lion skeletons, according to a media statement from the DEA.

Big news as Kruger National Park 10-year management plan approved by Minister

South Africa’s Acting Minister of Environmental Affairs Derek Hanekom has officially approved the ground-breaking and visionary 10-year Kruger National Park Management Plan.

NEWS WRAP: 8 arrested for possession of lion bones and meat + warden convicted after illegal collared elephant hunt

In this week’s news wrap eight people have been arrested for illegal possession of lion bones, meat and tiger skin; a warden was convicted after an illegal collared elephant hunt in Greater Kruger; Malawi investigates the deaths of at least 22 hippos at Liwonde National Park; and a High Court ruling proves a huge victory for Xolobeni community over an Australian mining company.

Balule responds regarding traumatising elephant hunt incident

Balule Nature Reserve responds to the incident regarding a traumatising elephant hunt.

Eight arrested for illegal possession of lion bones, meat and tiger skin

Eight people have been arrested in connection with the illegal possession of lion meat, lion bones and a tiger’s skin outside Klerksdorp in the North West.

Illegal collared elephant hunt in Greater Kruger – warden convicted

A warden has been convicted in court after a collared elephant was illegally hunted.

High Court ruling huge victory for Xolobeni community over Australian mining company

A community on the Wild Coast has won a historic victory in the High Court which has ruled the Mineral Resources Department cannot issue mining rights license without obtaining consent from the affected community.

Rhino Walking Safaris wins prestigious Kudu Award

Rhino Walking Safaris, a private concession located entirely within the Kruger National Park, has won the South African National Parks’ prestigious Kudu Award for the 2018 Business Partner of the Year.

Video: Malawi gains new giraffe population in Majete Wildlife Reserve

Thirteen South African giraffe have been translocated over 2,500 km and safely released into Malawi’s Majete Wildlife Reserve, establishing its first population.

Global petroleum company brings fracking threat to Drakensberg

An international petroleum exploration company has fired up a fresh application to explore for products in prime farmland in the central Drakensberg and Free State.

Balule teams bust three suspected rhino poachers

Three suspected rhino poachers were apprehended on Balule Nature Reserve on Tuesday morning after a well-coordinated effort between numerous anti-poaching, security, aviation and policing personnel took place through the night.

NEWS WRAP: Mountain gorilla status improves + giraffes under threat

In this week’s news wrap the IUCN has updated the status of mountain gorillas, officially changing them from ‘Critically Endangered’ to ‘Endangered’, though the list also reveals that giraffes are in serious trouble; the IUCN also stated that certain Lake Malawi fish species are at risk of extinction; a new parliamentary report has called for a ban on captive lion breeding for hunting and the lion bone trade in South Africa; China has now postponed the lifting of a ban on the trade of rhino horn and tiger parts for medicine and other uses; the African Carnivore Initiative has been established to help conserve Africa’s largest carnivores; and more than 400 buffaloes drown in the Chobe River.

Lake Malawi fish species at risk of extinction

The latest update of the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species has revealed that overfishing is causing fish species in parts of the developing world to decline, with 9% of the 458 fish species assessed in Lake Malawi at high risk of extinction.

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