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Africa Geographic Travel
Rhino camp master Misheck with transport crates in the background. Read Simon’s editorial below for the context. © Simon Espley

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Rhino victory + final pics + malaria-free Madikwe

Is this the most important wildlife conservation undertaking of our time?

I have just returned from five days with the African Parks and GKEPF* crews – translocating 32 rhinos from a large fenced paddock in South Africa’s bitterly cold, windswept winter Highveld (frost on my tent) to the sunny Lowveld of the Greater Kruger (see the press release below).

The scale of this project to move 2,000 farmed rhinos (plus their future progeny) into the wild is surely unprecedented, and I was blown away by the logistical, animal welfare, and security complexities of catching and transporting these lumbering giants.

What hit home most for me was that this slick operation is powered by a large team of skilled professionals working under stressful, exhausting conditions. This kinship of cooks to rhino camp masters on horseback, vets to helicopter pilots and truck drivers was powered by absolute passion, dedication and a management team obsessed with detail.

This is a complex project with many layers, risks and implications, and I will attempt to do it justice in a story I am compiling. Stand by for that.

As the early winter safari season unfolds, our clients are experiencing remarkable encounters across this magnificent continent, which I am privileged to call home. We are deeply grateful for your support, as it is your safaris that empower us to share our stories with the world. Safari njema, and thank you.

OK, that’s it from me for this week. Thank you for spending part of your day with us.

*GKEPF – Greater Kruger Environmental Protection Foundation

Simon Espley – CEO, Africa Geographic


From our Editor – Taryn van Jaarsveld

The mighty ancient baobab. From the iconic Adonsonia digitata of sub-Saharan Africa, to the tubby Adonsonia gregorii of Australia, to the tall and regal Adansonia grandidieri and five other species of Madagascar, these trees that hold history in their trunks deserve all the credit they get.

Some can live up to 3,000 years old, and have witnessed the rise and fall of multiple civilisations. They are the centre of entire ecosystems, produce nutritious fruits that nourish hundreds of species in the dry season, and store water and provide shelter for all from birds to bats and elephants. But did you know that ALL baobabs originated from Madagascar? Scientists have found evidence of ancient hybridisation between species, meaning that various species of baobab living together in Madagascar interbred to form the species we see today.

From around 12 million years ago, the seeds of Madagascar’s baobabs floated on debris rafts to the African mainland and all the way across the Indian Ocean to Australia. In Africa, they were spread across the continent by the ancestors of elephants. We are constantly learning more about the fascinating origins of the Tree of Life – spectacular beings that are worth celebrating…

This week was a judging odyssey for our Photographer of the Year 2024 – the last week for entries is always an epic one, with so many inspiring submissions. Check out the THREE galleries filled with stunning photos below. Plus, we’re celebrating African Parks’ successful rewilding of 120 rhinos to Greater Kruger – check out the story below.


Story 1
https://africageographic.com/stories/120-rhinos-rewilded-to-greater-kruger-in-historic-move/
RHINO WIN
African Parks has translocated 120 white rhinos to Greater Kruger in an initiative to rewild 2,000 rhinos into secure, protected areas

Story 2
https://africageographic.com/stories/photographer-of-the-year-2024-weekly-selection-week-13-gallery-1/
GALLERY 1
Photographer of the Year Week 12 entries are here! Winners will be awarded a safari & will have a lion research collar sponsored in their name

Story 3
https://africageographic.com/stories/photographer-of-the-year-2024-weekly-selection-week-13-gallery-2/
GALLERY 2
More Photographer of the Year Week 12 entries! Entries are now closed, and winners will be announced in July

Story 4
https://africageographic.com/stories/photographer-of-the-year-2024-weekly-selection-week-13-gallery-3/
GALLERY 3
Even more Photographer of the Year Week 12 entries! Enjoy a selection of the top pics from the final week of entries


Travel desk TRAVEL DESK: 

Fancy a one-of-a-kind safari to Madikwe Game Reserve in South Africa? This malaria-free reserve has it all – from the Big 5 to wild dogs, cheetahs, and brown hyenas. Let our experts plan your dream Madikwe safari here, or check out our ready-made safaris below

Madikwe Game Reserve is a prime safari location known for exceptional Big 5 sightings.
This is one of South Africa’s largest reserves and features diverse ecosystems.
It’s no wonder this is one of our most popular safaris!
Experience the bushveld while unlocking your creativity as you join professional wildlife artist Alison Nicholls on this art safari. Enjoy game drives, attend art workshops, and hone your wildlife-sketching skills in the best setting possible. Artists of all levels are welcome! Only 1 spot left.
Looking to explore Africa further? Browse our extensive list of safari destinations here

 

WATCH: Western lowland gorillas, forest elephants, bongos, dwarf crocodiles, huge flocks of grey parrots & green pigeons – and much more. Odzala-Kokoua National Park in the remote northwest of Congo-Brazzaville is covered in forests, rivers, marshes, and swamps. Here, marshy areas rich in minerals and salts attract a plethora of wildlife. Odzala-Kokoua is one of Africa’s oldest national parks and the ideal destination for lowland gorilla trekking. Learn more here. (05:27) Click here to watch

For more videos celebrating Africa, check out our videos here

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HOW TO GET THE MOST OUT OF AFRICA GEOGRAPHIC:

  • Travel with us. Travel in Africa is about knowing when and where to go, and with whom. A few weeks too early / late and a few kilometres off course and you could miss the greatest show on Earth. And wouldn’t that be a pity? Browse our ready-made packages or answer a few questions to start planning your dream safari.
  • Subscribe to our FREE newsletter / download our FREE app to enjoy the following benefits.
  • Plan your safaris in remote parks protected by African Parks via our sister company https://ukuri.travel/ - safari camps for responsible travellers

Africa Geographic Travel
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