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Gentle symmetry. An underground hide provides the opportunity to see eye-to-eye with a pair of endangered reticulated giraffes, elegant aquiline muzzles brushing the mineral-rich red earth of the salt lick. Ol Jogi Wildlife Conservancy, Laikipia, Kenya. Photographer of the Year 2022 entrant

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Daring giraffe move + another tusker dies + Cape porcupines

So the CoP19 decision-makers in Panama have closed the loophole that Namibia and Zimbabwe have abused to export wild-caught elephants, including babies, to zoos. The moratorium is temporary, though, to give African countries time to find common ground and hopefully make better decisions that promote conservation rather than lining the pockets of a tiny coterie of wildlife traffickers.

Exporting elephants to zoos has absolutely no positive impact on the protection of the species or on serious issues such as ecosystem protection and human-wildlife conflict.

Interesting how silent the lobbyists for ‘sustainable use’ have been about this clear case of cruelty and abuse. May they hang their heads in shame. I support sustainable use that is backed by science, accountability and transparency – none of which seem present when wild-caught elephants are trafficked to tiny concrete cells in far-flung corners of the globe.

Spare a thought for local people living with wildlife; for it is they who carry the cost to lives and livelihoods while others profit handsomely from pretend conservation.

More about the CITES Cop19 decisions in a while. Finally, be the change you seek in others. Out.

Keep the passion

Simon Espley – CEO, Africa Geographic


From the iconic to the awe-inspiring, our travel team has put together two adventure offerings in Kenya and Zimbabwe:

Victoria Falls and Hwange – 7 days – US$2,630
This short but iconic safari delivers two of Zimbabwe’s most popular destinations – Victoria Falls and Hwange National Park. Experience the iconic falls and all the activities the raging Zambezi River has to offer, before heading to Hwange for rewarding wildlife viewing in Zim’s largest national park

Maasai Mara and Samburu – 7 days – US$3,755
Soak up the best of the Maasai Mara and Samburu with this Special Offer. See the Big 5 and Wildebeest Migration and then head to Samburu, in Kenya’s remote and arid far north. Here, you can experience the iconic and rarely seen ‘Samburu five’ – Grevy’s zebra, reticulated giraffe, beisa oryx, gerenuk and Somali ostrich

From our Editor – Taryn van Jaarsveld

We’re moving with giants this week, celebrating their lives and the people that protect them.

An essential population of West African giraffe in the Gadabedji Biosphere Reserve, Niger, has just been bolstered by the addition of four female giraffes. This after a daring 800km translocation mission under military protection from Niger’s security-stricken ‘Giraffe Zone’, made possible by dedicated conservationists. Read more about this success story below.

In tragic news this week, another iconic Tsavo tusker has died. Lugard, a super tusker that is said to have had one of the largest sets of tusks in Africa, died of natural causes. Lugard is the second tusker to be found deceased in Tsavo in the last month. Read more about Lugard’s life and death in our second story.

In our last story, we explore the wonders of a fascinating mammal: the Cape porcupine. These endearing rodents are family-oriented, elusive and adaptable to the ever-encroaching human impact on their natural habitats. We’re celebrating their resilience in our third story.

Happy celebrating Africa!

Story 1
A vital population of West African giraffe has been bolstered after a daring translocation of 4 giraffes to Gadabedji, Niger

Story 2
Iconic Tsavo super tusker Lugard has died of natural causes. Lugard is the second tusker to be found deceased in Tsavo in the past month

Story 3
Cape porcupines are fascinating creatures. Protected by deadly quills, they are the largest rodents in southern Africa

Penguin breeding success!

Christina Hagen, Project Rep for Birdlife South Africa’s African Penguin Conservation project, writes on the AG Forum:

“A pair of chicks has been seen at a nest at the site of the new African penguin colony in the De Hoop Nature Reserve and Marine Protected Area, near Bredasdorp in the Western Cape, South Africa.

BirdLife South Africa, CapeNature and SANCCOB have been working to re-establish a penguin colony in the De Hoop Nature Reserve to allow breeding penguins better access to moving fish stocks. The project has now reached an important milestone with the first penguin pair successfully hatching and raising two chicks, providing new hope for the future of African penguins. This is an exciting moment for African penguin conservation as it proves that human-assisted colony establishment is possible. While this colony is still in its infancy, it has the potential to contribute to the conservation of this endangered species.”

Read and comment on the full post here, or offer support to Birdlife’s African Penguin Conservation project here.

WATCH: Check out striking footage of Tsavo’s majestic elephants, and the work done by the Tsavo Trust and Kenya Wildlife Services to protect Tsavo’s big tuskers. Keep an eye out for Lugard, the recently deceased super tusker, who can be spotted at 01:24 in the video (02:06). Click here to watch

To comment on this story: Login (or sign up) to our app here - it's a troll-free safe place 🙂.


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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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