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Travel: April safari in Africa

Interested in going on an African safari in April? Then have a look at our recommendations for the best wildlife-viewing destinations for that month.

There’s a bat in my bedroom!

A nature conservation student shares her first impressions after a few weeks at the Karoo Lodge Conservancy, located in the Karoo in South Africa.

NEWS WRAP: Singapore seizes record haul of pangolin scales + death row “nuisance” elephant Riff Raff gets a reprieve

In the latest news wrap Singapore has seized 12.9 tonnes of pangolin scales found in a shipping container destined for Vietnam, the biggest seizure of its kind globally in five years; death row “nuisance” elephant Riff Raff gets a reprieve as judge intervenes to prevent shooting; three rhino poachers from the notorious Ndlovu gang were sentenced to an effective 25 years behind bars; and two field rangers were attacked and injured by an elephant in the Kruger National Park while conducting a routine patrol.

NEWS WRAP: World’s largest ivory seizure + captive lion breeding here to stay, says DEA

In this week’s news wrap Vietnamese customs have seized over nine tonnes of ivory in a container shipment from the Republic of Congo, thought to be the largest ivory seizure ever made; the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) has proposed that the captive lion breeding industry should continue; three KwaZulu-Natal rhino poachers have finally been convicted after a 10-year trial; celebrities have called on European Union to protect giraffes from wildlife trade; and Japan is to make carbon dating of ivory mandatory for trade, tightening controls on oft-criticised market.

The Honey Badger

There is an expression in Afrikaans that goes “so taai soos ‘n ratel” – which translates to “as tough as a honey badger”. Across the continent honey badgers have earned the reputation of being tough, even lending their name to an armoured personnel carrier used by the South African Defence Force. This reputation is in part […]

Samara – Rewilding the Great Karoo

It was late in the evening when we sat down for a beautifully prepared three-course dinner at the impeccably decorated Manor House in Samara – a private game reserve located near Graaff-Reinet in the Great Karoo. The main topic making the rounds was about the much-anticipated lion release, which took place earlier in the day. […]

Comoros – The Forgotten Archipelago

The Comoros. It’s a name that conjures up a rich history of mighty sultans who once ruled over a melting pot of different cultures on islands at the end of the world. A volcanic archipelago off Africa’s east coast, the Comoros is made up of three major islands, called by their French names: Grande Comore (Ngazidja), Mohéli (Mwali), and Anjouan (Nzwani). Once […]

Opinion: Dereck Joubert reacts to Botswana hunting and culling recommendation

Respected filmmaker and conservation spokesperson Dereck Joubert has reacted to the Botswana government committee proposal to resume trophy hunting, and commence with elephant culling. Plans also include erecting fences to prevent certain wildlife migrations, and improve on human-wildlife conflict mitigation methods.

Fate of meerkats tied to seasonal climate effects

Does a drier and hotter climate present a threat to the meerkats in the Kalahari Desert? Researchers reveal that climate change is likely to impact meerkats, and seasonal rainfall and temperature will be the key factors.

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.

Video: Elephants go mad for marulas in our garden

“Elephants love marula fruit. I have seen them rush to a tree with a lot of fallen fruit the same way they would hurry to a waterhole when they are thirsty. We happen to have two marula trees in our garden that drop a lot of fruit.. too much for an elephant to resist!”

Travel: March safari in Africa

Interested in going on an African safari in March? Then have a look at our recommendations for the best wildlife-viewing destinations for that month.

Detecting wildlife cybercrime

Being able to identify transactions involving restricted species, and conversations happening about them, will assist law enforcement in the fight against wildlife trafficking.

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.