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15 top wildlife experiences + all about giraffes 🦒
There is a trend on my Facebook feed to ‘Photoshop’ photos of birds – to resemble a gaudy box of smarties – dashes of bright shiny colours that assault the eye. Sounds like fun, and any reasonable person would know that this is art and not reality. BUT, read the comments and you realise that many people think these are real-life depictions. Oh boy 🙄. Elsewhere we see artificial intelligence software winning fine art competitions – feeding the fakeness. The ongoing process of humans moving to a virtual world continues. Thank goodness there is still a bunch of us who celebrate reality on Earth – warts and all.
90% of Kenya’s energy generated is via solar, wind and geothermal. The country’s transition from fossil fuels to low-carbon energy sources has been slowed down by legitimate objection from communities in the affected areas. Imagine a (real) world where local people benefit directly from the environmentally friendly energy generated on their land – that would be a big middle finger to the fossil fuel industry!
As I write this it’s raining cats and dogs. Every part of me is tingling 🙂
Keep the passion
Simon Espley – CEO, Africa Geographic
TRAVEL DESK UPDATES:
Chitake Springs – 6 days – From US$3,310 pps
This epic photographic safari, led by two expert guides, is for the adventurous traveller and photographer seeking in-your-face wildlife drama. Chitake Springs in Mana Pools National Park is growing increasingly popular with photographers, as it consistently delivers raw, untamed wildlife action. There are only 2 spots left for this safari, departing in September 2023.
Rwanda gorilla trekking – 3 days – From US$2,630 pps
This is the perfect gorilla-trekking safari for time-challenged travellers. This adventure will take you through the pristine afro-montane forests of Volcanoes National Park, packed with golden monkeys, colourful Rwenzori turacos and prehistoric three-horned chameleons. And the cherry on the cake will be a mountain gorilla silverback and his family in the depths of paradise.
From our Editor – Taryn van Jaarsveld
From convening with mountain gorillas, to witnessing towering tuskers up close or being surrounded by thousands of wildebeest on their migration journey, there are a few iconic wildlife experiences that many of us have on our bucket lists. With so many opportunities for unique exploits on the vast continent, choosing the ultimate pilgrimage for that once-in-a-lifetime adventure can be tricky. That’s why teamAG has put our heads together to highlight 15 of the top wildlife encounters to pursue in Africa – see our first story below.
We have been pleasantly surprised lately to find how wildly popular giraffes are with the AG tribe. It seems that you can’t get enough of these (somewhat) gentle giants! And so, we’ve put together a bumper giraffe special, on everything there is to know about the planet’s tallest creature. Read more in our second story.
Next week we will be featuring our first Photographer of the Year gallery for 2023… we are brimming with anticipation. Have you entered your pics yet?
Happy celebrating Africa!
The ultimate guide to your African safari bucket list. Here are our choices of the top African wildlife experiences on the continent
The giraffe is a wonder of evolution, & a vital part of Africa’s ecosystems. Learn all about the planet’s tallest creature
From our Scientific Editor – Jamie Paterson
What do bats and dolphins have in common? The answer is (somewhat obviously) not very much, but they do hold one fundamental physiological process in common: they both use echolocation to locate their prey.
But hey, many seemingly unrelated animals share physical traits and abilities, right? Insects, birds and bats have wings; humans and blue-eyed black lemurs can have blue eyes; many animal families (like primates and pandas) have opposable “thumbs” etc. But here is the interesting part…
Did you know that echolocation evolved independently in dolphins and bats through the same genetic mutations? So while we have generally assumed that convergent evolution arose through different gene mutations arriving at the same result, the bat and the dolphin showed that sometimes these traits occur through the same sequence of genetic steps.
Easing human-elephant conflict
Evelyn Poole, rep for our project partner Elephants Alive, writes on our forum:
“When elephants are under threat, the entire ecosystem suffers. Thriving ecosystems rely on connections between protected nature reserves. However, these corridors intersect with human settlements and cause increasing conflict between humans and elephants. New research by Elephants Alive identifies innovative solutions to mitigate this conflict:
🏍 Use of rapid response units to de-escalate conflict situations and protect people & elephants
🌾 Planting elephant-unpalatable crops to protect AND supplement farmers livelihoods
Combining these solutions with proven methods, such as beehive fences by Save the Elephants, will provide a sustainable answer to promoting coexistence and increase tolerance of path-finding elephants.”
WATCH: Thousands of tonnes of critically endangered abalone have been poached from South Africa’s coast over the past few years, depleting natural populations. But can offering an alternative source through abalone aquaculture curb poaching? This abalone farm in Doringbay is creating employment and helping to secure the future of the species (02:15). Click here to watch
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HOW TO GET THE MOST OUT OF AFRICA GEOGRAPHIC:
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