Recently published newspaper and magazine articles, radio interviews and video clips about my Year in the Wild.
Posts categories: Newspapers
Peter Timm passed away in May 2014, at the age of 51, soon after I had the privilege of meeting him and chatting to him about his numerous sightings of one of Earth's oldest animals - the coelacanth, dating back 400 million years. Peter's love for the ocean (and nature in general) was infectious, and I got the feeling that if he wasn't an elite Trimix diver, plunging down to more than 100 metres in Sodwana Bay's deep canyons, he'd be a game ranger somewhere on a wild river in Africa. He was a larger than life person, who died while trying to help another diver.
This is the second time I've done the Imfolozi Wilderness Trail, and it's one of my favourite wild experiences in South Africa. This very special wilderness area - the place where the last white rhino in Africa were saved from extinction - is now under threat from a proposed mine that will border the protected area. When do we say: enough is enough? Surely the destruction and compromise of Africa's ancient natural heritage must come to an end? This is my article in the Cape Times.
In the south-east corner of Botswana is Mashatu Game Reserve, a place of baobabs, elephants and leopard. On the banks of one of the rivers lies the Ecotraining camp, where students of all ages or stages can learn about the bushveld and wild animals from experienced rangers and guides.
The little kingdom of Swaziland has one of the best records of rhino conservation in Africa. The man at the middle is Ted Reilly who was instrumental in rallying the nation to reintroduce and then protect wildlife, especially rhinos. My article in Cape Times touches on this remarkable achievement.
This smallish, but very important, national park lies an hour's drive south-west of Kimberley in the Northern Cape of South Africa. It's considered a "breeding" area for endangered and valuable species like roan, sable and Cape buffalo. If you can get past the "farm"-type atmosphere, then Mokala is great...and offers some of the best opportunities to take photos of these species.
A little article of mine about De Hoop's Marine Protected Area off the southern coast of Africa. One of the most impressive and well-studied ocean environments, this MPA is the site of the longest running fish tagging study in the world. Led by Colin Attwood from University of Cape Town, the study has set the standard for other MPAs around the world, proving to the skeptical fishermen that if we look after our shoreline environments, they will look after us!
I was in southern Namibia on the night of Nelson Mandela's death, and this is my article in the Cape Times on the great man's contributions to Africa's wild places.
Marine Drouilly is a French researcher who is working in and around Anysberg Nature Reserve in the Karoo to figure out the dynamics of predator-livestock conflict. Caracals and jackal continue to kill sheep in the Karoo, while farmers continue to shoot, poison and trap these predators. Marine is using camera traps to determine levels of biodiversity across farms and protected areas, and gathering predator scat to figure out what the predators are actually eating.
Buffalos and hippos at the southern tip of Africa? Long ago, yes, these were a common sight, but these days it's remarkable to see these species that were shot out 300 years ago by colonial huntesr. A group of farmers - together with the community of Elim - are working to create a private protected area around Agulhas National Park, proving that agriculture, communities and conservation can work together for a sustainable future.
A little article on the little Keurbooms River Nature Reserve, a lekker slice of paradise near the big holiday town of Plett. Once the whole southern Cape looked like this reserve - pristine amber rivers, steep gorges forested with Outeniqua yellowwoods so tall that you could reach heaven if you climbed to the top of them...and the dreamy echoes of Knysna turacos and Fish Eagles calling like archangels of the natural world. This reserve has one of my favourite log cabins...there's only one, and you are all alone in the reserve. Magic.
I've now travelled to about 60 protected areas in Southern Africa during my work as a photojournalist, but these are my favourite ones in South Africa. Check out Intrepid Explorer magazine, the official publication of my partners Cape Union Mart. Epic stuff.
A largely unknown gem of a protected area, Goukamma was placed at serious ecological risk when a large ship ran aground near the reserve's beach, leaking about 50 tons of oil into the oceans, some of which washed up onto the shores. But fortunately, thanks to some heavy seas and the hard clean-up work of reserve staff, most of the oil has disappeared, so that today the reserve's long beaches, fynbos and valuable marine protected area are once again back to their best.
This article and photos of mine makes a pithy introduction to the reserves on the Wild Coast of South Africa. My favourite is Mkambati in the far north of the region, but a close second is the Pondoland Marine Protected Area, which is the biggest in the country, and lies adjacent to much of the Wild Coast. Here you will see some of the densest concentrations of large marine mammals in the world, with hundreds of humpback whales, and thousands of dolphins. Other reserves worth visiting are Hluleka and Dwesa, but Silaka near Port St Johns was a great disappointment.
The northern Drakensberg is the most photogenic part of South Africa's largest mountain range, and this article of mine in the Cape Times guides you to the best sights and activities...
I keep going back to Garden Route National Park in the southern Cape, because it's an intriguing place. Forests, ocean, lakes, rivers, mountains...this article is all about how to get the most out of this fragmented but diverse protected area.
This article of mine on News24 gives visitors an introduction to Damaraland, which together with Kaokaland further north, makes up the Kunene region of northwest Namibia. It's a wild, hot, dusty, rocky and stupendously photogenic desert wilderness, and I can't wait to go back...soon! Check out the article here.
Just down the road from where I live (when I'm not travelling!), Cape Point is the wildest part of Table Mountain National Park, and one of my favourite places in the whole world. Three words...I LOVE IT.
The marine protected area of Table Mountain National Park protects some of the most diverse oceanic life in South Africa. Steve Benjamin from Animal Ocean took me out to go snorkelling with one of the seal colonies off Hout Bay, where thousands of seals cavort in the shallow ocean, making it one of the wildest things I've ever done! My article in the Cape Times describes it all...
One of the highlights from the past year was flying over West Coast National Park with my friend Jean Tresfon who owns a gyrocopter. What a spectacular way to see this beautiful national park. My column in the Cape Times elaborates. For more photos check out my blog here.
I wrote the article on the readers' favourite national parks and nature reserves for the January 2013 issue of Getaway. Some great destinations in the list, including Kgalagadi, Richtersveld, Hluhluwe-iMfolozi, Addo Elephant, Tankwa Karoo and Garden Route National Parks.
A short column for the Cape Times, this time on Addo Elephant National Park in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, where the beautiful private Gorah Elephant Camp is located.
My column in the Cape Times on Kogelberg Nature Reserve in the Western Cape profiles the enormously diverse flora that exists here, rivalling the rainforests for diversity of species per hectare. The reserve also boasts some of the best accommodation I have seen on my journey to the country's protected areas. Check out CapeNature's site.
My time with rangers Buyisile Mkulungu and Siyanda Mgidlana in Great Fish Nature Reserve was one of the highlights of Year in the Wild. Every morning and afternoon, they track black rhino in the remote, dense spekboom thickets of the central Eastern Cape. My column in the Cape Times endeavours to capture the essence of their work.
The floodplains of the Luvuvhu and Limpopo Rivers in northern Kruger make this region one of the best for birders. The fever tree forests are also perfect backdrops to herds of elephant and buffalo. My column in the Cape Times newspaper on Pafuri was published in August 2012. There are only a few places to stay in Pafuri, but the best is Wilderness Safaris' Pafuri Camp.
My monthly column in July for the Cape Times was on Tembe Elephant Park, the home of the largest tuskers in South Africa, and some of the biggest in Africa. One of my favourite wild places in the country, and one that must be visited by wildlife connoisseurs. (1.4MB)
No other protected area in South Africa conserves more species of animals than iSimangaliso Wetland Park on the north-eastern KwaZulu-Natal coast. A place of superlatives...it was the subject of my article in this Cape Times column which I wrote.
The relatively small but immensely beautiful Mkhambathi Nature Reserve on the Wild Coast in Pondoland of the Eastern Cape was the subject of this column of mine for the Cape Times newspaper.
My column for the Cape Times in March 2012 was on the rugged and remote Baviaanskloof mountains, an Eastern Cape park that is one of the most biodiverse places on earth.
My seventh column for the Cape Times newspaper, published in February 2012, on the Garden Route National Park. Read the online version of this article on the Cape Times/IOL website.
My sixth column for the Cape Times Newspaper, published in January 2012, on the beautiful Otter Trail in the Tsitsikamma section of the Garden Route National Park.
My third feature article (four-pages long) for Getaway Magazine, published in January 2012, on Augrabies Falls National Park. (0.7MB size).
My fourth column for the Cape Times, published in December 2011, on the Gamkaberg Nature Reserve. (1MB size). Read the online version of the article on the Cape Times/IOL website.
My fifth column for the Cape Times, on CapeNature's De Hoop Nature Reserve, published in November 2011. (1MB size). Also check out the online version on the Cape Times/IOL website.
My second column for Cape Times, on the CapeNature Cederberg Wilderness Area, published in September 2011. (1MB size).