Anti Rhino Poaching receives a $24m boost

I was positively impressed to learn that the Howard G Buffet foundation had made a considerable contribution to the anti rhino poaching initiatives in South Africa. More specifically, these funds will be used to develop techniques and technology aimed at reducing the poaching along the eastern border of the Kruger National Park, a border shared with Mozambique.

The Kruger is home to about 9000 rhinos, about 40% of the world population. During the whole of 2013, 1004 rhinos were killed for their horns; this year, 2014, 127 rhinos suffered a similar fate (Stats Here).  The levels of poverty in Mozambique (in the top 10 poorest countries in the world) contribute to this crisis. In addition, Kruger's poaching problem is fueled mainly by criminal networks in Mozambique, South Africa and South East Asia.

I posted an earlier blog reflecting on Jackie Chan's use of his celebrity status to appeal for the end of rhino poaching. Last month 40 countries signed the 'London Declaration' which aims to get countries to collaborate in the fight against animal slaughter for profit and to put an end to the trade of animal parts worldwide. Unfortunately South Africa did not show up to this event as the political class were involved in infinitely more important matters - attending the opening of parliament. South Africa also refused to sign up to the Declaration as it wants to be free to trade rhino horn.

I hope the funds contributed or committed in good faith by the Buffet Foundation, Standard Bank, Unitrans and others to reduce poaching are appropriately channel to protect the long-term viability of the rhino in southern Africa and not to feather the bed of the corrupt politicians.

Jackie Chan joins fight against Rhino poaching - video

In a new public service announcement created by the African Wildlife Foundation in collaboration with WildAid, Rush Hour star Jackie Chan urged his fans to stop the purchasing of products made by rhino horns in hopes of ending the innocent killing of rhinos. The video, titled “Tools of the Trade,” was recently shown to government leaders on Feb. 13 in London in hopes of putting a halt to wildlife trafficking.

In the video, Chan can be seen dodging a number of weapons while delivering his message. The video comes as a response to the significant decline of the rhino population. Due to the poaching of their horns, rhinos including the Asian and Sumatran rhinos, have become critically endangered. Products associated to rhino horns include jambiya dagger handles as well as traditional Asian medicine.


Announcing African Wildlife Photographic Safari Tours

I am happy to announce a new Wildlife Safari Tour that I’ll be leading to South Africa to photograph Tigers and Big Cats.

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Join me on one of the great excursions as we travel to the birthplace of Sir Lourens van der Post (more info here) and stay in one of the oldest settlements in the Free State. We spend three days (six sessions) with Tigers and then 7 days in the Timbavati area (of the White Lions of Timbavati fame) and in the Sabi Sands complex.

Groups are restricted to six guests each with their own seat in a stadium type 4x4 safari vehicle.

See details on the 2014 Tours page.

Collapse Aftermath

As a recap, on January 11th I was fortuitously filming a wind and rain storm when I caught a building collapsing under the force of the wind. The video I posted on Youtube posted over 100,000 views within a week. I gave a dozen interviews in the ensuing period, the last of which took place tonight for a Japanese TV station.

One question came up on what was happening on the 'disaster' location at present. I had taken a video the day the mechanical shovel started cleaning the site.

By Wednesday the site looked ready to take on a new look. Here we see the first new modules being erected to continue the building operation.

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Till next time when I will review what I discovered about social media during the last 10 days.

A Windy Afternoon

Today was just like most Saturdays - slow and comfortable. Outside the weather was gray - overcast and not too cold.

The relative calm was pierced by an Emergency Alert (see more later) at about 2pm. I looked at the phone which was locked and saw a message briefly not registering the details. I tried to unlock the phone and the message disappeared. Bad design, I thought. I now had to look for the alert somewhere in the innards of that technology beast. As I was fiddling, I looked outside and saw the bushes straining at an unnatural angle due to the winds.

Took my phone/camera to document this unusual weather phenomenon and was some-what concerned about how my building would hold up. Turned on the video recording, placed the phone up against the glass pane and felt the vibration caused by the high-speed winds.  As I was commenting to myself in a half-tone about the scary nature of what I was seeing and feeling, I got a lot more than I could expect.

Within a few seconds the wind gusted and the structure a mere 30 yards (roughly 30m) came crashing down turning the building into heap of wooden beams and compressed sheeting.

Note: The Emergency Alert System is a national warning system in the USA and is designed to, amongst other things, alert the public of local weather emergencies such as tornadoes and flash floods.

Exhibition Opens Today

Some eight months ago I started looking at venues to exhibit the images I have taken over the years. Most locations were already full booked for the remainder of the year (and some beyond that) and I was able to find a slot for the month of January in Farmville.

Now that is Farmville the town, not Farmville the game.

The exhibition comprises 39 images taken in South Africa, Kenya and Botswana. My favorite is the elephant family portrait, printed on canvas and measuring 12 x 36. It is difficult to get these shots as the elephants will walk in single file as they approach foreign or strange structures.

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I have made the full collection available for sale and can be found in the Gallery Store.

It's Time

As you may notice, I haven't posted a post on this site since last year October.

Well, I think it's time to rectify this. And being that time of the year when many good intentions lead to changes in life, here is my contribution. So be prepared, world!

Welcome to the new home of edbrazphotography.com

New home for African Wildlife Photography Safari Tours

 

Visit Africa and photograph the rapidly diminishing Rhinos and other wildlife

 

It is with great pleasure that I announce the new home for www.edbrazphotography.com.

This release has been in the making for a number of weeks and thanks to the inherent features of the services provided, it was relatively easy to implement. It will undoubtedly see improvements over time. Your feedback is most welcome.

I will continue to offer African Wildlife photographic tours and to showcase the images garnered in the African bush of wild animals facing greater threat of extinction. In 2013, the number of Rhinos killed for their horn, reached 408 at the end of May. This number is frightening when measured against the total killed during the full year of 2011. That year, 448 rhinos perished at the hands of greedy killers.

I welcome you to my new home and look forward to the experience.

 

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