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Africa Geographic Travel
Wading through the baïs of Congo. Odzala-Kokoua National Park, Congo-Brazzaville. © Scott Ramsay | African Parks

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Raptors in crisis + Holgate in Bangweulu + Odzala-Kokoua adventure

Just in from Congo-Brazzaville – Odzala-Kokoua National Park to be precise. This was my first safari to west-Central Africa (unlike some in my team) and so many animals and birds we encountered were personal lifers, and the many and varied night sounds not easy to identify. The mouthwatering list of mammals we did not get to see – like potto, Lord Derby’s flying squirrel, elegant galago and long-tailed pangolin (to name a few) – means I will certainly be back. And then there are the extraordinary forest birds – we did not even scratch the surface.

What an adventure – from crashing our drone into a tributary of the Congo River (it survived after 5 minutes of underwater filming – including some very curious fish!) to an early morning two-hour bash through dense forest understory in the pitch dark to get to the remote Lokoue baï where we watched Western lowland gorillas feeding on tasty treats. Expect a travel diary in the not-too-distant future.

All this, of course, on behalf of our recently launched venture Ukuri – safari camps for responsible travellers.

Keep the passion

Simon Espley – CEO, Africa Geographic

From our Editor – Taryn van Jaarsveld

Did you know that Madagascar has reintroduced giant tortoises, that last wandered the island 600 years ago, to its shores? But that’s not the best part. Introducing these tortoises may be the key to restoring woodlands and limiting wildfires across Madagascar’s grasslands.

The project, which began in 2018 with a group brought in from Seychelles, aims to rewild Madagascar with thousands of the Aldabra giant tortoises. Historically, these tortoises were important ecosystem engineers in Madagascar, before they were wiped out by hunters. The tortoises feed on dry materials on the forest floor, mopping up the dry fuel that aids fires, and also disperse seeds in their droppings, aiding the proliferation of woodland habitat. The daring conservation strategy behind the reintroduction suggests the 350kg tortoises will help restore Madagascan forests, grassy woodlands and shrublands.

Don’t miss our stories this week on Kingsley Holgate’s expedition to Bangweulu Wetlands, and the dire situation of raptors in Africa, below.

Story 1
Kingsley Holgate & his Afrika Odyssey team are connecting 22 protected areas across Africa. Read about their expedition to Zambia’s Bangweulu Wetlands

Story 2
Researchers have uncovered a looming extinction crisis for Africa’s birds of prey, painting a grim picture for the future survival of the continent’s raptors

Travel desk TRAVEL DESK: 

We have two thrilling safaris lined up for those seeking a water-inspired introduction to some of Africa’s best destinations. Start planning your safari now

Blend the vibey coastal city of Cape Town and the nearby Winelands in South Africa with the safari wilderness of Botswana’s Okavango Delta. Two of Africa’s most popular destinations in one safari!
Experience the two magical islands of São Tomé and Príncipe.
Indulge in the natural, cultural and historical wonders of this one-of-a-kind nation and explore its other-worldly coastline by boat.

Safari report-back

Sharon Traeger and family recently enjoyed our Ultimate Primate Safari. The Traegers began their safari in Kigali and went on to seek out gorillas in Volcanoes NP (Rwanda) and Mgahinga Gorilla NP (Uganda). They then enjoyed a little beachside R&R on the “Rwandan Riviera” at Lake Kivu, before visiting Virunga NP (DRC) and Nyungwe NP (Rwanda). They wrapped up their safari with visits to Mafia Island and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. Read why Sharon recommends this luxurious experience:

“We had a great experience with guidance from Christian from Africa Geographic. He helped us plan, customise, and experience the Ultimate Primate Safari. We saw gorillas, monkeys, chimpanzees, and whale sharks in their natural settings. Our wonderful guide, Gaston, helped us enjoy East Central Africa with personalised attention and care. Thank you for a truly memorable journey.”

Want to go on a safari like this? Check out our Ultimate Primate Safari here

WATCH: WildCRU’s Lion Guardians and Boma Project helps protect communities around Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, from incidents of human-lion conflict through an innovative early warning system and the use of mobile bomas. The project’s Long Shields Guardian Programme employs and trains local men and women to protect villages from lions, safeguard cattle, and aid wildlife management. (05:47) Click here to watch

For more videos celebrating Africa, check out our videos here

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  • 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.
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We're an eclectic pack of safari experts, storytellers, admin and tech nerds and digital natives whose sole mission is celebrating Africa and doing good. We do this by creating life-changing, responsible safaris just for you, publishing informative, factual articles about Africa's incredible natural wonders and raising donations for worthy causes. This MANIFESTO explains our approach to travel and conservation.

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