Field Research and Conservation in Africa
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by Mary Wykstra
In January I wrote about an accident that I had with our sturdy old truck. I have really enjoyed the Hylux - it has high clearance, it is powerful up hills and in mud and it is more or less a comfortable ride. A few times in the last years I have done fundraisers aimed at getting the funds to replace the old beast, but each time I fall short of the funds to replace it and end up investing into improving it. After the accident, we needed to pretty much rebuild the front end and I decided that we would keep this old truck for quite a while.
THE SMART NEWS SOURCE | Jul 18 2010 20:29 | LAST UPDATED Jul 18 2010 20:29
News | National | Environment
DAVID ADAM - Jul 16 2010 13:23
Only Southern Africa's reserves are bucking the trend
Africa's extensive network of national parks is failing to stem the decline of large mammals, according to a new study that highlights biodiversity loss across the continent.
After a long day in the field there is nothing like a bit of fresh air and a cool drink.... ACK staff do not take the time to relax and enjoy eachothers company enough. Thus... we designed the perfect place in our Salama cheetah camp. A past volunteer made a donations with the strict instructions thatIi do something to relax. I thought about heading to the coast or up to visit friends in Nakuru, but that would only be a brief relaxation... I wanted to do something that would last.
Since our camp opening in May 2008, ACK staff and volunteers have used a basin in the shower area. While most of us were dealing well with this, we know how nice a good shower feels after a day in the field.
Repeat volunteers like Peter Barber understand this. Peter came from Canada in January with pully's in his suiitcase. Rope, bucket, tap and wood were purchased in Salama. Peter used our existing shower facilities to hoist the bucke high enough for every member of our team.
Twice in February we were able to track the collared female. In both cases voluteer Peter Barber was with us as a driver. The first download was thanks to the Sasaab Lodge manager (Tony) who saw her make a kill near Samburu Lodge. We followed tour vehicles to her location as our tracking equipment did not pick up her signal. After we realized that we had entered the wrong setting we again tracked Nataanywa in late February and we found her in the northwestern part of the reserve. The data shows that she has remained in the Samburu and Buffalo Reserves thus far...
After a long time of getting to know the Westgate area we have decided to start officially workiing in the area. In January a written proposal was submitted to work in collaboration with the Ewaso Lions Project in predator monitoring and conflict evaluation. We have worked with Shivani and her team in intial data collection, so it was a logical decision to continue this collaboration. Although we will not be working under the lion project, we will be working collaboratively. We set our first cheetah trap in a location selected by one of the scouts (Jeremia).
ACK welcomes the new Community Warden for the Salama area. KWS and ACK share common goals in reducing human-wildlife conflict. Eunice came to visit the cheetah camp to learn about how the work of ACK compliments the goals of KWS. We have always had a great relationship with the KWS officers in this region and with Eunice we can feel assured that we still have their full support of our work here.
ACK relies on volunteers to assist in everyday activities when they join our team. Peter Barber is a volunteer who has returned five times. He started with providing assistance and with fundraising for the cattle dip project in 2006. Each year he revisits the dips and encourages the mangers to keep up the good work. Peter also aids many projects through raising awareness and funds once her returns to Canada.
95 Million-Year-Old Insects Found in African Amber Surprise Scientists
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