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 with little regard for animals. But, it seems that we are unfairly stereotyping this nation. There are a group of young environmentalists in Vietnam who are tackling environmental issues and crimes head on. Education for Nature Vietnam (ENV) was founded 12 years ago and works to change people’s views in the best interests of conservation. Their latest campaigns include ending crimes against bears, stopping the illegal tiger trade and helping to fight against the poaching of rhinos. Maurice goes to Vietnam to find out more.
What would you say if that deserted patch of ground collecting weeds and litter could be replanted with beautiful, usable plants? A group known as Ambush does just that. They decide on a piece of earth within the city limits and replant it without any consultation with the land owners. This guerrilla type of gardening beautifies the area and adds value when food crops are planted. Guerrilla groups such as Ambush are active in many parts of the world but have only recently popped up in South Africa. Ambush describe themselves as eco-artists, activists, sustainable designers, social change makers, performers, recyclers, revolutionaries and, of course, guerrilla gardeners. They claim they have not been caught on the wrong side of the law so we take a look into the great work they are doing as well as the legalities of guerrilla gardening.
Strange Smells in Tarlton
Tarlton – this area is often described as Gauteng’s food basket, with fresh produce grown here for export. But residents in the area have been overwhelmed by the smells released by some farmers’ manure stocks. Should they just pinch their noses and bear it? Or is this a big enough stink to kick up?
Birds are a fascinating part of the wild but they are probably the most difficult animal to catch on camera. Noises frighten them away and with the smallest provocation they fly off and flap away. Maurice and Villiers give some tips and techniques for capturing great shots of even the flightiest of feathery friends.
In the spot light this week we have some hungry snakes getting up to all sorts of tricks for a scaly snack. We also take a look at how one little chameleon catches his food, and how an eagle makes short work of South Africa’s largest lizard.