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Gabon: Ground Zero for Forest Elephants

There’s simply no way other way to begin this story: The future for Africa’s forest elephant (Loxodonata cyclotis) is exceedingly dire. The battle to protect this “hidden elephant” from unremitting slaughter is being lost to a more aggressive and merciless demand for the animals’ ivory. Or as Richard Ruggiero, Africa branch chief at the US…

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #20

“Okavango”, “Serengeti”, “Masai Mara”, “Zambezi”, “Kruger” and “Kafue”. These are some of the wildest places left and have hidden within them “wilderness” that can take those who visit it back in time on a powerful journey that explores our place on this blue-and-green planet. In this amazing collection of photographs is a glimpse into the…

Into The Okavango: Unique View Into 2013 Okavango Expedition

In September 2013, we embarked on our most challenging crossing of the Okavango Delta… The research data set we achieved over 15 days and 338km using a bespoke Android App was the most comprehensive ever and was shared in real-time via an open API and up-to-date satellite image. This 10-minute video documents an impossible expedition across dry,…

Pictures: Special Albinos and Unusually White Animals

From elephants to squirrels, unusually white animals often hold a special place in society.

January 12, 2014: Climbing Buildings, Hunting Poachers and More

Join host National Geographic Weekend host Boyd Matson and his guests as they climb the world’s tallest buildings, ski with the sport’s inventors, give new life to Christmas trees, seek sea life at the bottom of the ocean, discover the unicorn, protect rhinos by hunting for poachers, kayak blind through the Grand Canyon, prioritize protection plans for endangered species, and track the world’s underground water reserves.

December 8, 2013: Discovering Record Setting Remains, Climbing Antarctic Peaks and More

This week, on National Geographic Weekend, join host Boyd Matson as we uncover a trove of pre-human remains deep inside a South African cave, then we coach kids to fulfill their destiny as Antarctic adventurers, and finally, we peer deep into space to watch galaxies collide.

December 1, 2013: Running the Amazon from New Source to Sea, Fact Checking Thanksgiving and More

This week on National Geographic Weekend radio show, join host Boyd Matson, as he and his guests paddle the length of the Amazon River, see Jerusalem through the eyes of its citizens, debunk Thanksgiving’s creation myths, and taking selfies with tigers.

Warning From Past / Hope For The Future

UNESCO World Heritage Listing for the Okavango Delta would be a massive achievement for Botswana, as well as all the NGOs and individuals that have invested their time in this initiative over the last decade. Most importantly, declaration will highlight the importance of preserving the vast Angolan catchment in its current state, celebrating the Kavango…

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #18

Africa is our closest representation of the “Pleistocene megafauna”, the massive land animals considered archetypical of the last ice age, the mammoths and mastodons, sabre-toothed cats, and giant sloths, horses, bears, tortoises, and much else that disappeared with the subsequent rise of humankind. To walk in Africa’s wild places is to listen to yourself and understand your place on…

New Law of Urination: Mammals Take 20 Seconds to Pee

Call it the other Golden Rule: scientists have found that all mammals weighing more than 2.2 pounds (a kilogram) empty their full bladders in 21 seconds.

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #17

We are rediscovering that only through sharing will we save this magnificent planet. Social media gives us the ability to share photographs, thoughts, ideas, and knowledge almost instantaneously with powerful effects. A great example of this is National Geographic’s “The Great Nature Project”. This is a worldwide celebration of our diverse planet through photographs submitted by people around the…

Best Photographs: 2013 Okavango Expedition

Every year the Percy FitzPatrick Institute and Wild Bird Trust undertake the Okavango Wetland Bird Survey. This is a nine-year project that aims to use 71 wetland bird species as indicators of significant change in the flood regime and functioning of the Okavango Delta. The survey involves “poling” ourselves over 250 miles across this enigmatic…

October 6, 2013: Throwing Axes Like a Lumberjack, Wolves Feeding Grizzlies, and More

This week on National Geographic Weekend, we row through a quickly thawing Northwest Passage, then we throw axes with a champion lumberjack, and finally, we snap pictures with National Geographic’s head of photography.

Mass Poisonings Devastate African Wildlife, Incite “Urgent Measures”

The recent mass poisoning of vultures has prompted the Namibian Ministry of Environment and Tourism to propose urgent legislation that would ban over-the-counter sales of poisons and pesticides. (Read more: Elephant Poachers Poison Hundreds of Vultures to Evade Authorities) Further investigations have revealed that over 1,000 vultures may have perished in this single incident.  While this…

Marching to Save the Elephant on October 4

“Whoever has seen these giants marching across the last free open spaces of the world knows that this is something that must not be lost.” – Romain Gary, The Roots of Heaven Several years ago, Marie and I began to mourn the tragic dismembering of elephant society across Africa, an act that caused us to…