Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Well Fed Backsides

One of the many reasons I love my job so much is that it gives me the chance to convince people of the value of preserving not only the wildlife and wilderness of Africa, but of the world generally. We in Australia should not preach the conservation bible to developing nations. After all we have the world’s fastest rate of mammal extinction and are clearing native vegetation and therefore wildlife habitat at a prodigious rate too. How does the old saying go? “People who live in glass houses shouldn’t walk about in the nude.” Something like that anyway.

Nevertheless, those of us fortunate enough to live in the more affluent societies like Australia can make a difference. Visit these wild places. Demonstrate that the wilderness and the wildlife has a monetary value greater than the development it is being threatened with. It isn’t fair for us to sit in our comfortable homes with our well fed backsides firmly wedged into Italian leather lounges complaining how dreadful it is that the Amazon is being destroyed or that the population of wild tigers on the planet now number even less than the amount of working engines on a Qantas Airbus A380.

The average African, for example is not employed. He receives no regular income other than that which he generates through his own means, be it selling a few vegetable in the local market, husbanding cattle or goats or chopping down trees to sell as firewood. You cannot tell him not to do that because you need the land for wildlife. There has to be an incentive, some sort of compensation or he and his family will starve.
Many African game lodges provide work, schools and medical facilities to villages in their vicinity. In addition there are numerous projects that assist both the wildlife and local communities and it can be a life changing experience to participate in these. Take the example below for instance, and there are many others project like it where most of the funds generated go towards the preservation of endangered wildlife It is a sobering thought that were it not for the intervention of a humble insect the Serengeti would in all likelihood now be grazing land and devoid of wildlife. The humble tsetse fly ensured that settlers cattle could not survive there, they quickly died from African trypanosomiasis or sleeping sickness. The disease no longer stalks the Serengeti but the great plains have been preserved and I think it is one of the wonders of the world.

For more information please call me – Peter Emery on 0449 689 447 or Ucango Travel & Cruise Centre on 1300 822 646. Or drop me an email at

Desert & Delta Safaris 4 night Leroo La Tau Rhino Package
The Botswana Rhino Relocation and Reintroduction Project focuses on raising funds to ensure the wellbeing of the existing population as well as to bring in additional Black and White rhino to augment the current population. To support the Project, a proportion of proceeds from the following safari packages will go directly to rhino relocation and reintroduction initiatives at Leroo La Tau in Botswana.

5 days/4 nights from just $1,950*pp
Desert & Delta Safaris 4 night Leroo La Tau Rhino Package
Experience the natural wonders of Botswana's wildlife, reserves and beautiful lodges with the four night Rhino package starting from just $1950 per person.
Leroo La Tau Park offers adventurers and holiday-makers the ultimate safari experience, populated by up to 30,000 zebra and wildebeest; and closely accompanied by some of Africa’s most iconic predators. Guests will have the option of exploring the area, enjoying the wildlife on guided day and night game drives; and retiring after dinner to a splendid fireplace overlooking the river.
Includes: charter flights to and from Maun, two nights accommodation at Leroo La Tau, inter-camp charters and two nights accommodation at one of four impressive African lodges - Camp Moremi, Camp Okavango, Xugana Island Lodge or Savute Safari Lodge.

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