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Greater Kruger wildlife count + magnificent hippos + grey parrots
Kruger is known to many as ‘the greatest place on earth’, and I’m delighted I’ll be getting my own fix in the north of the park in just two weeks’ time. (And you can too – check out our discounted rates on some epic Kruger lodges here).
As one of the most robust conservation areas in South Africa, the land encompassing Kruger National Park and Greater Kruger is home to South Africa’s greatest wildlife populations. The APNR, a collection of reserves in Greater Kruger, provides an essential tract of land for Kruger’s animals to roam. Monitoring these populations helps preserve the integrity of this important ecosystem. We delve into the latest APNR census results to highlight the fascinating ebb and flow of nature – see our first story below.
This week we also celebrate the most hardy and entertaining of animals: the magnificent hippopotamus. Jamie shares some personal encounters with the powerful and speedy beasts, and some intriguing facts shedding light on these mysterious semi-aquatic creatures. These pics and insights are guaranteed to bring lightness to your being. Check out our second story.
Happy indulging in Africa to you all!
Taryn van Jaarsveld — Editor
From our Scientific Editor – Jamie Paterson
The phrase “illegal wildlife trade” immediately brings to mind things like rhino horn, ivory, pangolin scales and lion bones. But did you know that parrots are one of the most trafficked animal families in the world? Their popularity in the pet trade (along with extensive habitat loss) has meant that 60% of Earth’s Psittaciformes (parrot) species are in decline.
Take the African grey parrot, for example. They are currently listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List and, prior to their inclusion on Appendix I of CITES in 2017, were trapped in their thousands to supply the pet trade. Fortunately, there are those dedicated to protecting remaining wild populations. Dr Rowan Martin has shared updates on the work of the World Parrot Trust on our forum. To check out the post, download our app (details below). You can also seamlessly donate to the project to support their significant contribution to parrot conservation!
Associated Private Nature Reserves (APNR), part of Greater Kruger, completed their 2021 wildlife census. We analyse the ebb & flow of results
ALL ABOUT HIPPOS
The hippopotamus – a large semiaquatic mammal – is one of the most powerful, speedy and feared animals in Africa
TRAVEL DESK UPDATES:
Desert & delta
This iconic and ever-popular 11-day safari is about water – or the lack thereof. We visit Victoria Falls, Okavango Delta, Chobe and the desolate Botswana salt pans in our quest to understand how water defines southern Africa’s wild places. Options for all budgets. And we can tailor the duration to suit you – drop this, add that …
And now for something completely different
Look away if your ideal safari is in the comfort zone because this is not your average vanilla-flavoured outing! Search for lowland gorillas, bongos, dwarf crocodiles, forest elephants and flocks of grey parrots in the dense forests of Congo in this one-of-a-kind, life-changing adventure.
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WATCH: Anatolian shepherd dogs play an important role in alleviating human-wildlife conflict between livestock farmers and predators in Namibia. Meet Captain, a guard dog who dutifully watches over and protects his herds morning, noon and night (03:15). Click here to watch
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