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Leopard cub, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya ©️ Photographer of the Year entrant Adnan Savani

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5 days old, and our private travel & conservation club is GROWING like a dry season bush fire, fanned by the August winds!

And already the JUICES are flowing with our first donation – for Lion Landscapes (apt, considering our first story below). Thanks for getting the ball rolling Ulla Meixner, and to others for your donations since then. Remember that every Dollar counts, and that AG takes no share in donations made. We will forward donations to the relevant conservation projects every few months.

And club member Anthony Robinson has shared this shocking video of crazy guide behaviour during the Maasai Mara migration river crossing season. HAVE YOUR SAY about what can be done to stop this irresponsible behaviour.

Obviously, your favourite AG stories are all available in the private club, as well as on our public website. That said, as from today, we have de-activated comments on our public website.

Remember that, as a newsletter subscriber, you have been PRE-APPROVED for club membership – your invitation code and instructions were emailed to you this week. If you have not seen our email with subject line “Your invitation to join our private club” then please scroll through your email spam folder.

Keep the passion

Simon Espley – CEO, Africa Geographic


From our Editor-in-Chief

In many parts of South Africa, there is a hint that winter may be ending. In some cases, this hint is a little disturbing – trees seem to be flowering slightly earlier, possibly as a result of our warming planet. Still, I’m only too pleased for the lengthening days. The expectation of birds, flowers, smells and greenery makes me smile.

I try to keep an open mind about trophy hunting and I am prepared to listen to arguments in its favour where benefits genuinely flow to local people in marginal areas. Our first story below, detailing the death of a lion called Mopane, however, shows the outright savagery of various echelons of the trophy hunting industry.

Yesterday was world elephant day and the Elephant Crisis Fund has launched a campaign for the critically endangered forest species. Our second story below explains the importance of these hidden gardeners of the forest.

I’m not sure how the subjects of our fourth story below feel about the changing season. No doubt, the meerkats will be looking forward to easier foraging as temperatures warm, but this will be tempered by the fact that they live in some of the hottest (though most beautiful) parts of Southern Africa.

 

 


From our Scientific Editor

Our relationship with dogs goes back further than any other domestic species. Though hard to imagine now, every pampered pinscher or breathless brachycephalic pug can trace its lineage back to the wild wolves of old. At some point at least 15,000 years ago (though probably more), our ancestors realised that our lives would be infinitely improved by a four-legged companion.

Since then, working dogs have been bred for various tasks – from hunting and herding to security and sniffing out illicit substances. In keeping with this fine tradition, the Cheetah Conservation Fund has been supplying farmers in Namibia with Anatolian shepherds to protect their livestock from wild predators. Read our third story to find out how these dogs are contributing to cheetah conservation.

 

Story 1
https://africageographic.com/stories/trophy-hunters-kill-another-breeding-hwange-lion-mopane/
ANOTHER CECIL TRAGEDY
Trophy hunters kill another breeding lion (named Mopane) from Zimbabwe’s Hwange NP – in a mirror of the Cecil tragedy

Story 2
https://africageographic.com/stories/hidden-forest-elephant/
FOREST ELEPHANTS
Forest elephant numbers are believed to have plummeted 86% in just 31 years yet their role in maintaining forest ecosystems is critical

Story 3
https://africageographic.com/stories/namibias-livestock-guarding-dogs-are-saving-cheetahs/
DOGS SAVING CHEETAHS
Guard dogs are saving cheetahs, says new research that provides telling statistics

Story 4
https://africageographic.com/stories/marvellous-meerkats/
MEERKAT MAGIC
Meerkats are small, desert-dwelling mongoose of Southern Africa. They are characters known for their complex and intriguing social lives

 


DID YOU KNOW: The rock hyrax or dassie has a gestation period of around 7 months – yet the adults only weigh 4kg (8.5 lb)!


WATCH: A fascinating look at the animal origins of diseases that affect human beings and why their numbers are increasing (6:19)

 

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We're the Africa Geographic editorial team – a diverse set of writers, editors, designers and social media natives, all united by our passion for this addictive continent.

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