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Africa Geographic
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Africa Geographic Travel

Identifying venomous snakes: How hard can it be?

Identifying venomous snakes is a lot more complicated than you’d think. There aren’t any hard and fast rules to distinguish a venomous snake from a non-venomous snake in southern Africa, and many people get bitten by snakes that they misidentify as ‘harmless’. Here we look at some misconceptions when it comes to venomous and non-venomous snake identification, and what to do when you encounter a venomous snake.

Impalas cry wolf, so say zebras!

It turns out that impalas are the drama queens of the African bushveld, and other species know it, and don’t take their predator alarm calls too seriously.

Fieldwork impressions from Kenya’s Taita Hills – a biodiversity hotspot

In the tropics, fast growing human populations and an increased need for agricultural land clash with the need to protect biodiversity hotspots. Often nature loses out and pristine habitats become fragmented and gradually degraded. How does this affect the animals that have roamed these landscapes before humans started to exploit them? Can they cope with these changes?

15 Lion facts you need to know

The African lion (Panthera leo) was once described in Samuel Johnson’s Dictionary of the English Language (1755) as “the fiercest and most magnanimous of the four footed beasts”. This definitely rings true with these magnificent felines! It is quite clear that lions are fascinating creatures, and here we get to know them a bit better by looking at 15 facts about them.

NEWS WRAP: Elephants in China endure horrific conditions + wildlife parts allegedly sold on Facebook

In this week’s news wrap a video has emerged showing the horrific conditions being endured by elephants at Beijing Zoo in China; body parts from threatened wildlife are allegedly being widely sold on Facebook; a Chinese man was jailed by a Dutch court for smuggling rhino horn; a pangolin was saved during a poaching syndicate interception in Makhado, South Africa; a pair of rare twin elephant calves thrill conservationists in Tanzania; and a new report helps Uganda take aim at wildlife trafficking.

7 Reasons to love the shoebill

The shoebill (Balaeniceps rex) looks like a bird that belongs in the prehistoric age. Found in the marshes of East Africa, the shoebill is classified as vulnerable and is a bucket-list sighting for any avid birder. Here are seven reasons to love this big bird.

5 Facts you did not know about African wild dogs

Many will know that Africa’s wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) require vast areas to roam, hunt cooperatively to run down their prey and regurgitate food for pups and other pack members. But there are other remarkable facts about these beautiful animals that perhaps you didn’t know.

11 Leopard facts you need to know

The African leopard is an elegant and powerfully-built predator. It is the most secretive and elusive big cat, and arguably one of the most beautiful members of the entire Panthera genus. Here are 11 facts about the leopard you need to know.

Could naked mole-rats live forever?

Naked mole-rats are weirdly spectacular – they are bare-skinned, wrinkly and buck-toothed, and they live in large underground colonies in East Africa where only the queen breeds, with a few selected males. Even more spectacular is that research has shown that naked mole-rats do not age in the same manner as other mammals, and in fact show little to no signs of ageing, and their risk of death does not increase with age.

17 Elephant facts you need to know

The African elephant (Loxodonta africana) is the largest land mammal in the world and one of nature’s great ecosystem engineers, being a major contributor to maintaining the balance between wooded and grass ecosystems. Here are 17 fascinating facts that you need to know.

Pangolin research in the Kalahari

Little is known about how pangolins might cope with the direct and indirect effects of a changing climate. A PhD researcher is therefore investigating the body temperature, diet, and activity patterns of free-living ground pangolins in a semi-arid environment in South Africa.

Wild dogs vote with sneezes

Scientists studying wild dogs in Botswana have found members of this endangered species use sneezes to vote on when the pack will move off and start hunting.

Bees protect large trees from elephant impact

A study has found that hanging beehives containing African honeybees from the branches of marula trees protects these trees against elephant impact because the elephants avoid those trees.