africat foundation lion eyes Africat – Making a big difference in Africa

Did you see the Lion episode of the ‘Dynasty’ series narrated by David Attenborough which was shown on BBC1 on  Sunday the 25th November  ? If so were you moved by what you saw? If you missed it then why not  watch it on catch up!  Those heart wrenching pictures of ‘Charm’ having to leave her poisoned cub behind….all so sad and actually with understanding and a support unnecessary….
In Namibia, like in Kenya, AfriCat is working with the local farming communities to reduce the incidents of poisoning, trapping and shooting of lions for their perceived and real threat of killing the farmer’s livestock. Farming successfully alongside predators takes courage; understanding and a support programme like AfriCat’s Protect our Pride. Working with local people does produce positive results with a reduction in the numbers of livestock and lions being killed.

The Protect our Pride programme includes: an education and livestock management programme; research; building strong kraals; an alert system from collared lions within local prides that can let farmers know when the pride is in their vicinity and a support team (AfriCat Lion Guards) on hand to help farmers defend their livestock and to ‘chase’ the lions back to safe areas. The Africat Lion Guards community members and farmers themselves offer advice/support to help other farmers.

With the drastic fall in lion numbers as mentioned in the Lion Dynasty program helping a single lion to survive can make a big difference, as was evident in the programme. To find out more about AfriCat’s support programme and to make a donation go to Protect our Pride and look at the AfriCat Uk website www.africat.co.uk.

Africat, proetcting big cats in Namibia Africat – Big Cat Conservation in Namibia

Chris-Packham

Chris Packham, one of AfriCat’s patrons, said
‘I have the great fortune to visit many conservation projects around the world and AfriCat is in the premiership. Its whole ethos is founded upon securing practical solutions to problems in the field. It’s about really making a difference, not talking about it. It’s about intelligent and effective solutions being implemented now, not tomorrow. ‘

This short video taken at AfriCat gives an idea of what it takes Chris to get a particular image.

The AfriCat Foundation in Namibia is working to save the large carnivores of Namibia. It is committed to the long term conservation of these animals and the environment they inhabit. It does this by protecting endangered species, education, research and working with the communities who live along side them. The greatest threat to these animals comes from habitat loss/degradation and increasing competition and conflict with people. AfriCat listens to local people and works with them to find sustainable solutions. When visiting Namibia you can stay at the Okonjima, the home of the AfriCat Foundation, learn about the conservation programme while tracking rehabilitated cheetah and seeking the elusive leopard in their ‘wildlife reserve’. The 22,000 hectare reserve/park is itself a project in rebuilding a sustainable ecosystem. Okonjima was a cattle farm with the ensuing issues of bush encroachment and degraded grasslands. The grassland management programme being implemented has seen all forms of wildlife benefiting. Now even a small herd of cattle are back within the park helping to enrich the soils.cheetah running in Namibia

In the past the threat to livestock posed by the large carnivores meant that farmers regularly shot or trap them, so much so that lions and spotted hyenas have been eliminated from most farms and thus much of Namibia.  Currently it is estimated that there are less than 900 lions left in a narrow band along the Zambezi strip, through Etosha National Park and westward to the coast. AfriCat North has been working tirelessly with local community farmers running a human wildlife mitigation programme on the Western Boarder of Etosha National Park developing solutions that work locally. For example AfriCat has been supporting communities to strengthen or build kraals so livestock are better protected at night.

The lion guards in Namibia

The community Lion Guards, local farmers themselves, are providing advice, information and support to fellow farmers. The information gained from the lion research programme has given valuable insight into the movement of local lion populations and enabled AfriCat through the Lion Guards to alert villages to the presence of lions    AfriCat is now seeking funding to create a sustainable operational basis for developing and expanding its lion research, education and community conservation programmes in the area.

 

You can donate to special appeals

There is scope to ‘adopt-a-carnivore’ at Okonjima.

More information can be found at www.africat.co.uk or contact the AfriCat UK team at [email protected]

saving the lives of big cats in Namibia

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Botswana is home to the Okavango Delta, the Selinda Reserve, the Chobe National Park and the Makgadikadi Salt Pans. Popular activities in Botswana include watching meerkats at the Makgadikgadi Pans, taking a helicopter ride over the Delta, sleeping under a blanket of stars in the Kalahari Desert and watching elephants at Chobe National Park.

Namibia is another one of Africa’s best-known and most fascinating destinations. Activities that you may be interested in during a trip to Namibia can include flying over the Skeleton Coast, quad-biking at Swakopmund, seeing the cheetahs and leopards at the Africat Sanctuary, kayaking with cape fur seals at Walvis Bay or looking for desert-adapted wildlife at Damaraland. Taking a balloon ride is another popular activity – fly over Sossusvlei Dunes to enjoy a true once-in-a-lifetime experience.

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