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New 50|50 Episode, 18 February 2013

Utrecht Utrecht is small town in northern KwaZulu-Natal. It is home not only to the endangered wattled crane but also to a unique geographical point where a significant proportion of South Africa’s fresh water originates. Unfortunately, almost a third of the town’s residents are unemployed … but with mining-prospecting applications going through almost back-to-back, there […]

7 Reasons to visit Madagascar

Madagascar is the world’s 4th largest island and famously referred to as the world’s eighth continent, due to its distinctive ecology that has allowed a unique and endemic island to evolve. After splitting with India over 88 million years ago, Madagascar is now part of the African continent and lies off the South East coast […]

New 50|50 Episode, 11 February 2013

A focus on water Making a mess Throughout South Africa, one of the leading causes of illness is poor water quality. And one of the main causes of poor water quality is a problem with local sewerage works. Some sewerage plants manage to remediate polluted river systems to near-natural, but not every aspect of a […]

No wildlife, no Tourism

Written by: Karim Kara With the current devastating poaching situation in Kenya and Africa as a whole, Non Governmental groups and conservation bodies, supported by bands of individuals singing the same song, marched the streets of Mombasa chanting “Protect our Heritage”. Frustrations from groups and individuals on the lack of stringent punishable laws and protection […]

Mossel Bay Great White Hunter Found Guilty

The man who posed triumphantly over a dying great white shark has finally got what he deserved.  Do you remember when we first showed you this shocking image of a man posing triumphantly with a dying great white shark? Well I am happy to announce he has been found guilty by the Mossel Bay Magistrate’s Court. Leon […]

New 50|50 Episode, 4 February 2013

Nastia rescued Last year we featured a story on the plight of Ukrainian brown bears living in harsh and cruel conditions. Bears that would under normal circumstances walk hundreds of kilometres daily are spending their entire lives in tiny cages on restaurant properties, subdued with alcohol or used as targets for dog-hunting. The animal welfare […]

New 50|50 Episode, 28 January 2013

Cape parrots A large green parrot with a yellow-brown head, the Cape parrot could be mistaken for a green-and-gold Springbok supporter. However, these birds live in evergreen forests far from rugby stadia. Once common, they are making fewer and fewer appearances in general these days and are fast becoming the most endangered parrots in the […]

Orphaned Elephants Earn their Keep

Many moons ago I went on an elephant-back excursion at Victoria Falls. My wife and I loved the experience and were very aware of the amazing relationship between the elephants and their handlers.  But since then we have heard of so many bad reports about the growing use of elephants as public exhibits, the brutal […]

Jane Goodall Chimp Gives Birth Live on Camera

Nine-year-old chimp, Nina gives birth to healthy baby boy in the first live broadcast of a chimp birth. Wednesday, 23 January 2013 Among luscious greenery, nestled in a mountainous valley, nine-year-old chimpanzee Nina gave birth to a healthy male baby at 07h28 this morning South African time at the Jane Goodall Chimp Eden sanctuary near […]

Victory for Animal Welfare: Zimbabwe Releases Captured Baby Elephants

Post courtesy Simon Bloch – Sunday Argus – January 20th 2013 A day after the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force announced its intention to bring a high court application against the country’s wildlife authority for selling baby elephants to zoos in China, its chairman and animal rights campaigner, Johnny Rodrigues, declared a huge a victory to […]

WWF's 12 Essential Travel Tips that Are Great for Conservation

They criss-cross the globe in an effort to protect the planet’s wild places, so the World Wildlife Fund WWF staffers know a thing or two about how to travel responsibly. Here are 12 conservation-minded travel tips from members of this amazing team. 1. [quote]Keep your boots clean! Seeds, insect egg, and other living material can […]

New 50|50 Episode, 21 January 2013

Vietnam Busters When it comes to conservation Vietnam has a bad reputation, especially in light of the devastating rhino poaching occurring across South Africa to meet Vietnamese demand. With Vietnamese nationals and embassy officials having been caught red handed dealing in illegal rhino horn, it’s not surprising that South Africans see them as an enemy […]

Prince William Backs African Conservation Awards

HRH The Duke of Cambridge has agreed to support a new annual award scheme that aims to celebrate outstanding achievement in the field of African conservation. Tusk, the African conservation charity of which Prince William is Royal Patron, has established The Tusk Conservation Awards in partnership with Investec Asset Management. Photo © Chris Jackson and Getty […]

Sylvester, Zimbabwe's Orphaned Cheetah, Finds a Home in Victoria Falls

In April 2010, in the Lowveld area of Zimbabwe, a cheetah gave birth to five cubs. Sadly within two days, in a cruel act of nature, she and four of her cubs were fatally attacked by a male lion, something which is common between apex predators in the wild. The sole survivor was discovered by […]

New 50|50 episode, 7 January 2013

Princess Vlei Our country is often plagued by strikes and violent protests that leave nerves frayed and tempers flaring. But in the Cape a quieter battle is being fought between the poor residents of the Cape Flats and big business. The residents are not fighting for better pay; instead they are battling bulldozers threatening lovely […]

Education To Stop Poaching?

Bbbbbbrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. A low rumble resonated in my ears as I shut my eyes. Just for a second I thought I was back in Africa, but the round of applause that erupted brought me back into the room. Rachael was beginning her talk about the work of Game Rangers International and had completely captivated the audience with […]

Unarmed Farm Manager Gives Rhino Poachers a Bloody Nose For Christmas

By Simon Bloch of The Cape Times/Independent News Group. An unarmed Zululand game farm manager, Bester Scheepers, and a group of rhino guards armed only with knob-kerries overpowered and arrested two members of a heavily-armed poaching gang after a fist-fight that lasted five minutes prior to Christmas. The suspects were due to appear in court […]

New 50|50 Episode, 31 December 2012

December is a logical time to look back over the year that has passed and remember the good times. We’ve had a fantastic year and covered some incredible and unique stories. In our special New Year’s Eve episode we bring you the highlights of 2012, from the spectacular oceans to the many mysterious and endangered […]

Tanzania Withdraws Proposal to Downlist Elephants

Earlier this year Tanzania applied to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) for permission to hold a one-off sale of 101 tonnes of stockpiled ivory and to reduce protection for its elephant population. The African country intended to seek approval for trade in hunting trophies for non-commercial […]

New 50|50 Episode, 24 December 2012

Swimming with Dolphins Dolphins – those slippery, friendly mammals – have been popular since before the hit movie ‘Flipper’ and now we have dolphin shows, trainers and can even swim with these incredible sea creatures. Dolphins slip through the ocean waters with grace, serenity and playfulness. They are social and interact with humans, but is […]

Rare Toad Saved By Zoos is Restored to the Wild

I am not alone in harbouring a slightly sceptical view of zoos, however, I have recently come to realise their value when it comes to conservation efforts. Case in point the Kihansi spray toad.  This little guy is a native of Tanzania, discovered in the Kihansi Gorge, living in a micro-habitat created by the spray […]

How to Drive Safely and Protect Wildlife this Holiday Season

‘Tis the season to be jolly, unfortunately, ’tis also the season for an increased number of motor vehicle accidents. At this time of year most of us are accustomed to the various Arrive Alive campaigns that warn of the potential perils that may besiege us humans on the roads, however scant attention is paid to […]

The Blind Baby Rhino

Nicky, now four months old, was born blind – but that doesn’t diminish his playful and curious nature! While on safari in the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in Kenya we spent an incredible couple of hours with Nicky. The young black rhino was asleep under a blanket when we first arrived, but he soon woke up […]

Head to Head with Zambezi Sharks

Having faced an uphill battle in our first two weeks, our luck has begun to change. We have identified the problems with the engine and we have acquired a very talented cameraman. Richard is from the Good Picture Company, making all of us look good and adding a wonderful energy into the team. We have […]

Falling for False Bay

Getting to know your study subject is a touchy subject in science… The very word ‘anthropomorphising’ will send shudders of horror down the spine of many an objective, pipette-toting lover of all that is rational and measurable. Staying immune, however, is often easier said than done. Take for instance Dr Jane Goodall, a scientist who […]

New 50|50 episode, 10 December 2012

Samangos Of the few species of primate in South Africa, the samango monkey is the least known. This is because samangos are limited to the canopies of mist-belt forests, which are threatened and becoming more and more fragmented. Two researchers have recently joined forces to have a look at the monkeys – one from the […]

Sharing the Wonder of the Sea

I can’t quite remember exactly when it was that I came to fall in love with our oceans. Rather than experiencing a lightning-bolt flash of recognition, a moment where I thought, ‘This is where I want to be. This is what I want to do with my life,’ the ocean has been a loyal but […]

Saving the Last African Penguins on the Planet

Africa, without its penguins? A spine-tingling shiver as cold as the Atlantic ran through me when I discovered that our very own penguin could disappear within my lifetime. The statistics are terrifying, and I had no wish to add to the doom and gloom by photographing dead penguins or dwindling colonies … I wanted to […]

Latest Rhino Poaching Statistics for South Africa

The latest rhino poaching statistics indicate that a total of 588 rhinos have been lost to poaching since the beginning of this year, with the total number of arrests at 246. The Kruger National Park has lost 362 rhinos to poaching. The North West, KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo provinces continue to be the hardest hit by […]

New 50|50 Episode, 19 November 2012

MammalMAP We have heard of the bird atlasing projects, we have heard of mapping the locations of butterflies and reptiles but the Animal Demography Unit (ADU) in Cape Town has embarked on a continent-wide search for our mammals. The creation of MammalMAP aims to update the distribution records of all African mammal species. But this […]

New 50|50 Episode, 12 November 2012

Penguin Slick A major oil slick from SELI 1 on the Table View beach front on Saturday, 1 September 2012 meant that hundreds of seabirds needed to be de-oiled. The Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB), along with many volunteers, have been working frantically since then. The African penguin population has […]

Meeting and Greeting in Kafue National Park

As I stepped off the plane in Lusaka back in August I was thrown straight back into the unpredictable world of Game Rangers International (GRI). Expecting to be met by Sport (head of GRI) and travel with him to the Elephant Orphanage Project‘s (EOP) release facility in Kafue National Park, I was instead greeted with […]

Companion Plants, Subsistance Success

Lucky girl that I am, I recently got to go on a little press trip to check out the Growing the Future  project at the Grootbos Private Nature Reserve. Essentially it is a food –planting project, which aims to teach local women agricultural and horticultural skills, with a bit of business and general life-skills thrown […]

A Matriarch Goes Missing

A post on behalf of conservationist Sharon Pincott in Hwange: She is huge and majestic. She is astonishingly gentle. And she is the most gracious and dignified of all. She is the adult presidential elephant who, almost 12 years ago now, I named Lady.   I’ve written about her often – ‘Lady of the Estate’; […]

New 50|50 Episode, 5 November 2012

Dewatering Kathu Kathu, known as ‘the town under the trees’, came into being as a result of iron-ore mining activity in the Kalahari – an area previously home only to farmers of sheep and cattle. Thousands of jobs were created with the opening of the Kumba (Sishen) Opencast Mine and today almost a third of […]

In the Tracks of Giants!

“The last roll of the dice!” This was one of the overriding themes at last night’s Africa Geographic reader event in Cape Town. Ian McCallum and Ian Michler attracted a large crowd to the Cape Union Mart Adventure Centre in Century City to hear about the duo’s epic Tracks of Giants expedition across southern Africa […]

New 50|50 Episode, 29 October 2012

Predator Purge 350 years ago was the last time that jackals, caracals and other small predators roamed carefree in the Western Cape. Nowadays these so-called ‘vermin’ have lost their former hunting grounds to agriculture, and farmers in some provinces can legally hunt and kill them to protect their livestock. New draft legislation in the Western […]

Cape Leopard Trust fundraiser yields R300 000

The Cape Leopard Trust Annual Fundraiser was held at the prestigious Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards in Franschhoek. It was an evening of delectable food and wine with the purpose of raising funds for the project. Leopard’s Leap Wine hosted this exclusive 2012 Charity Fundraising Auction to help raise much needed funds toward their research and conservation […]

Unite Against Poaching: 1 Year of Helping Rhinos

The Low Down If you read Africa Geographic’s special rhino issue a few months back, or have even vaguely followed the news over the past few years, you know that rhinos around the world are in dire straits. Poachers have been targeting rhinos for their highly valued horns in response to an increased demand for […]

Massive Ivory Seizure – the biggest haul ever

A record-smashing 3,81 tonnes of illegal ivory was seized in Hong Kong on Saturday – the largest ever in China and the largest worldwide in two years. The sheer size of the haul confirms that the past 24 months have been among the deadliest for elephants in recent time. Hong Kong officials announced yesterday they […]

Bleak News For Rhino – Vietnam Fails to Sign

The Mail & Guardian has reported that Vietnam has FAILED to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with South Africa that would have addressed the rhino poaching crisis. According to Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) spokesperson, Roopa Singh, the MoU wasn’t signed because the relevant government minister from Vietnam was ‘unavailable’. Both countries are attending a CITES […]

New 50|50 Episode, 22 October 2012

Fracking With the moratorium on shale gas exploration in the Karoo lifted, fracking is back on everyone’s minds. There are more lobby groups than ever before and many of them are citing the dire consequences of fracking experienced in the USA. Fracking is banned, or under some form of restriction in more than 140 places […]

On Toad Alert

On those cold, miserable winter evenings, when you were snugly tucked in front of the fire, Karoline Hanks was tackling the elements, on the lookout for toads. It’s nightfall in Noordhoek. Angry black storm clouds shunt over the mountain and then clear temporarily to reveal a perfectly plump, full moon. Right now, the rain is coming […]

24 Hours in Paradise: A Game Count in Zimbabwe

I’m tired but happy. I’ve counted 14 different species and there are literally hundreds of animals spread out before me, cropping the fresh emerald grass that is sprouting through the black ash left by a veld fire that tore through here a week ago. Zebras are braying everywhere and between the jostling herds are rare […]

Hyaenas Under My Bed?

The piercing screams of a distressed elephant are not the ideal interruption to a peaceful sleep. I awoke to this devilish cacophony and glanced at my watch. It was half past 3 in the morning. Angry trumpeting and the thundering of pachyderm feet through water accompanied the screaming. I calculated blearily that the splashes must […]

Behind the Scenes: Photographing October’s Cover Star

Shoebills are a rarity that few get to see, but I was fortunate to spend a few weeks in Bangweulu Wetlands, Zambia, up close and personal, with cover model Kapotwe.* This isn’t Kapotwe’s first brush with fame. Earlier this year, Africa Birds and Birding (now combined with Africa Geographic in one AWESOME mag) ran a […]