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Pathways Africa with Mike – Day Four

Day Four: Today I was witness to a school field trip program like no other. Some of you may have meet Julian Fennessy, Co. Founder and Co. Director of The Giraffe Conservation Foundation, based in Namibia. Julian was one of our conservation speakers in October for our “Year of the Giraffe” campaign. The Living Desert supports the great work of Julian and GCF. I had the opportunity to spend the day with Rachel de Raan, Environmental Education Coordinator and her staff from GCF. I participated in a run through of their school program called (KEEP). The Khomas Environmental Education Programme (KEEP) is an exciting initiative of GCF in Namibia. KEEP […]

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Helping Rhinos with JDB

AT LAST WE BEGIN Dr. James Danoff-Burg, 12 Jan 2018, Balule Game Reserve, Limpopo Province, South Africa The vervet monkeys woke me again today. They are simultaneously adorable and infuriating, inquisitive and terrified, quiet and racket making – a bundle of contradictions, but that is also the nature of doing conservation work in Africa. I am here in South Africa for five weeks to lead a team of researchers from California State University San Marcos, Helping Rhinos, and The Living Desert to evaluate the social impact of what has become one of the bright points of light in conservation: The all-female Black Mambas Anti-Poaching Unit. The Mambas work in the […]

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Pathways Africa with Mike – Day Three

Day Three: With a light rain falling on Windhoek and after a hearty breakfast at 6:30am it’s time for day two of conservation training. The training commenced with a lecture on Land Tenure and Management, presented by Kelly Stoner, associate Conservation Scientist with the Wildlife Conservation Society. Kelly is leading the Bison Program in Montana in the effort to restore wild, free-ranging bison to tribal lands. Kelly’s work has focused on human-wildlife conflict, applied conservation research, and strategic communication and has taken her to Tanzania, Botswana and Namibia. Kelly started with an introduction of the structure and maintenance of Namibia’s communal conservancy system. With many African Nations attending we heard […]

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Pathways Africa with Mike – Day Two

Day Two: Today, as part of the Pathways training 45 participants we visited the fame of Ulf-Dieter Voight, owner of Krumhun farms. His family have been cattle farmers since 1909. In 1996 he changed Krumhuk to biodynamic farming with their community developing different production lines and processing their own produce. From dairy products, honey, sunflower oil and many other pure organic products. The farm is located in a mountainous terrain which is prime for predators like the cheetah, leopard, jackal, and caracal, which creates human wildlife conflict. In order to improve rangeland management, prevent losses to predators, and to build a better relationship between cattle and humans, many aspects of […]

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Pathways Africa with Mike – Day One

Day One: Pathways Africa Conference Windhoek, Namibia After a 30 hour journey through Airports and daunting security checks, I’ve arrived in Windhoek, Namibia for the Pathways Africa Conference. Pathways is a conference and training program esigned to address the myriad of issues that arise as people and wildlife struggle to coexist in a sustainable and healthy manner. I’ve been invite by Dr. Laurie Marker, founding director of CCF Cheetah Conservation Fund, to help facilitate the workshop as part of my AZA SAFE Cheetah public Engagement responsibilities. The conference and workshop is a critical wildlife conservation effort, with participates form all over the world. Including many of the NGO The Living […]

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Tanzania with Mike – Day Five

Day Five: More Tarangire National Park After yesterday’s sightings of cheetah and realizing that only 11 resided in the park, I was ready to look for them again in the same location. Up at the crack of dawn, Boni and I setout to the site along the Tangirie River we saw them last. Along the way, laying next to its borrow was the fuzziest bat eared fox in the world (in my expert opinion). The elephants, giraffe, wildebeest, buffalo, waterbuck, zebra, and countless gazelles, grassed and drank for the diminishing waterholes along the way. As we approached the river, I saw one, two, then four cheetah, jumping across the tiny […]

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