Year in the Wild Blog

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White Lion - Timbavati - Kruger - South Africa

White Lions! What a way to end…

I've finished! My second Year in the Wild is over, and I haven't uploaded a blog for a while, because I've been in the north of Kruger, where there is little cell phone reception or internet. In the next few days, I'll be uploading several blogs about my time in the north, which is my favourite part of this 2 million hectare protected area.

What a way to end: white lions! I couldn't have planned a better way to end my epic year of exploring South Africa's wildest places. I've spent the past
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Kruger National Park - South Africa

Third week in Kruger: pretty lady on a rock

The veld in Kruger is all brown and amber, because it's the end of winter. But I love the dust and the smell of the dry earth. During my third week, I had another great leopard sighting, this time near Pretoriuskop. A young female leopard, full of sass and attitude. I found her sitting at sunset on a boulder in this south-western part of the national park. What made it extra special was that I was alone with her. Well it's always special being alone with a pretty lady, but this was extra
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Kruger National Park - South Africa

Kruger – My second week: Leopard! And flying with General Jooste

I spent the past week at Malelane and Berg-en-Dal camps in the south-west of Kruger, and at Skukuza, the biggest and most famous camp, further north. It's been a pretty quiet week in terms of spotting plenty of wildlife, but I did have two amazing experiences.

The first was spectacular just because a leopard was involved (anything is guaranteed to be spectacular when a leopard is involved). On a sunset drive with field guide Peter Zitha, we spotted a big male leopard on the side of the road,
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General Johan Jooste briefs some of his section rangers who are at the frontlines on the war on poaching in Kruger

Full interview with Kruger’s anti-poaching chief General Johan Jooste

There’s a small sign above Major-General Johan Jooste’s desk at his office in Skukuza, the headquarters of Kruger National Park. It says: “Think Big, Start Small, Act Now”.

It’s an apt credo for the man in charge of anti-poaching at South African National Parks. The 61-year-old ex-army general joined the organization in 2013, and has been tasked with one of the country’s biggest, most immediate challenges: combatting the scourge of rhino poaching.

Last year, 606 rhino were killed in
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Kruger National Park - South Africa

Kruger – My first week: Lions, kingfishers and on foot with ellies

I'm in the Kruger National Park for two months in August and September. I'll be compiling a travel guide from my trip, interviewing many of the rangers and guides, and of course, taking lots of photos.

Kruger is huge - 2 million hectares, or 20 000 square kilometres, so it's larger than some small countries. Is it Africa's finest protected area? More than any other national park on the continent, it has probably contributed most to the conservation of Africa's wild animals.

That's a big
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Death of the kings – Tembe’s elephants in danger

Within a few months, Africa has lost two of her finest sons.

In April this year, iSilo, the biggest tusker in Southern Africa, born in the mid 1950s, was found dead in Tembe Elephant Park in northern KwaZulu-Natal. Although he died reportedly of old age, his immense tusks – each weighing around 65 kgs and over 2 metres in length - had been hacked off by poachers, and still remain missing.

Then more recently in Tsavo East National Park in Kenya, Satao, the biggest tusker in East Africa–
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