Consider the African wildlife ranger’s job — the long periods away from family and home, low pay, challenging physical conditions, and significant risk of armed confrontations. In 2018, more than 50 African rangers died in the line of duty, killed by poachers, elephant attacks, snakebites, and a myriad of other causes. The International Ranger Federation’s annually released roster of fatalities paints only a sliver of the picture, omitting the many rangers who suffered severe injuries during the year.
African Wildlife Foundation conserves elephant and rhino populations by supporting the work of rangers and community wildlife scouts — the “boots on the ground” who shield highly endangered animals from poachers’ guns.
By the time the rains had failed yet again in October 2019, more than 100 elephants had already succumbed to the southern drought in Zimbabwe alone. One of the harshest dry periods experienced in the region in the last four decades, the extended drought disappeared water sources across shrinking grazing areas. Wildlife mortalities continued to rise in Zimbabwe’s iconic protected areas, most notably in Hwange and Mana Pools National Parks.
The illegal trafficking of protected African wildlife species can take various gory forms across the continent. Wildlife management authorities and investigators often discover concealed elephant tusks still dripping with blood or even pieces of flesh and hides, but they are also likely to find crocodile eggs or pangolin scales. The contraband counts as evidence, as do the tools and weapons found at the crime scene, which can range from handmade bows and arrows to AK47s.
Nigeria is home to a wealth of biodiversity within its seven national parks.
Nigeria lies on the western part of Africa on the Gulf of Guinea. It contains several large urban centers like the capital city Abuja and is one of sub-Saharan Africa’s largest economies, relying heavily on oil as its main source of foreign exchange earnings.
South Africa is one of the world’s most diverse countries.
The Republic of South Africa is in the southernmost region of the continent. Its long coastline stretches along the South Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean for more than 2,400 kilometers (1,500 miles). While its coastline is lush, the rest of its geography is vast, flat, sparsely populated, and dry. More than 1,600 kilometers (1,000 miles) south of the mainland lie the Prince Edward Islands, a small sub-Antarctic archipelago.
African Wildlife Foundation in partnership with the Government of Rwanda and Rwanda Development Board has expanded Africa’s oldest park for the first time in 30 years.
The 27.8-hectare of donated land is adjacent to Volcanoes National Park and is the narrowest part of the park in an area where endangered mountain gorillas often wander across the park boundary, which increases the risk of human-gorilla conflict and the danger of exposure to deadly disease.
Balancing Mozambique’s natural beauty and natural resources.
Located on the southeast coast of Africa, the Republic of Mozambique is divided into two regions by the Zambezi River. The north features a narrow coastline, low plateaus, and rugged highlands and the south has broad lowlands. The savannah and dry woodland habitats near the border of South Africa's Kruger National Park are home to elephants, impala, duiker, springbok, kudu, and ostrich.
A third of Tanzania is protected.
From its stunning Indian Ocean beaches to the shores of Lake Victoria, from the arable plains of its central plateau to the heights of Mt. Kilimanjaro, Tanzania is a jewel of East Africa. It is the largest country in the region, formed in 1964 by the union of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. Among Tanzania’s neighbors are Kenya to the north and Mozambique to the south, with multiple landlocked nations to its west relying on it for access to the coast.