Year in the Wild Blog

Posts with tag Eastern Cape

British Airways Magazine – January 2014 – Wild Coast reserves

In this article in British Airways Magazine, I profile four nature reserves on South Africa's Wild Coast, the least developed and most beautiful part of the subtropical coastline. Although there is increasing pressure on the land and sea, these reserves largely retain their sense of wildness. My favourite is Mkambati Nature Reserve in the northern part of this coastline...check it out!

Days 37 & 38 – Year in the Wild 2013-14 – Surrounded by lions and elephants

For two hundred years hunters in the Eastern Cape had killed thousands of elephants. The most notorious was a rather unsavoury character - Major Philip Jacobus Pretorius - who was commissioned by the government in 1919 to kill any remaining elephants in the area. Fortunately, he failed in his quest. By 1931, when Addo Elephant National Park was proclaimed, there were just eleven elephants left in the Eastern Cape.

Today there are more than 600 of Earth's biggest land mammals in the park, and
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Day 34 – Year in the Wild 2013-14 – All is extraordinary

In a world of Internet media we have instant access to the finest photographic images. With digital cameras and instant publishing platforms, we've become used to excellent wildlife photos. These days there are so many superlative images out there, taken by thousands of different professional and amateur photographers. It's great to see, and the digital technology and Internet has made my career possible.

But I also think that as photographers we should remember that ultimately we're just
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Days 28 to 31 – Year in the Wild 2013-14 – Man down in Hluleka Nature Reserve

So, for a photographer like me, there's nothing quite like being sick and confined to your bed (and bathroom), when you're in a place where you have a beautiful forest, a pristine beach and herd of zebras all to yourself.

Hluleka Nature Reserve is one of the prettier places I've been on the Wild Coast, with some of the best accommodation. And it's not a good place to have food poisoning. A few chicken sausages were the culprits. Flip, I haven't been sick like that for a while! (You won't see
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Days 25 to 27 – Year in the Wild 2013-14 – The beautiful and ugly of Silaka Nature Reserve

The little Silaka Nature Reserve lies to the south of Port St Johns, one of the most beautifully-located towns in the country. It lies at the mouth of the Umzimvubu River, which has cut its way through high sandstone cliffs to empty itself out into the Indian Ocean.

Silaka is seven kilometres south of the town, and is only 4 square kilometres in size, making it one of the smallest protected areas in the region. Like Port St John's, however, it is one of the prettiest too. The hills are
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Karoo road trip – Mountain Zebra National Park

The second protected area on my Karoo road trip was Mountain Zebra National Park in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. It’s one of my favourite. It’s small – only about 280 square kilometres, but its crammed with beautiful rolling hills covered in grass, and the high plateau of the Bankberg mountains.

The conservation of the South African endemic Cape Mountain Zebra is a remarkable success story.

By the late 1800s,
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