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Bio African Parks is a conservation NGO that manages National Parks & Protected Areas on behalf of governments across Africa to benefit wildlife & people

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 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "Hong Kong customs authorities have just seized US$1 million worth of rhino horn at the Hong Kong International Airport. " at Akagera National Park - 1979876038038949823

Hong Kong customs authorities have just seized US$1 million worth of rhino horn at the Hong Kong International Airport. The record haul which consisted of 24 pieces, weighing about 40kg, was found in boxes carried by two men arriving from South Africa en route to Vietnam. The two suspects, aged 28 and 33, were flying in from Johannesburg and planning to transit to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The @scmpnews reports that between 2013 and the first 10 months of 2018, the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) seized a total of about 202 kg of rhino horns, of which 76 pieces were whole horns. Rhino horn is used in traditional Chinese medicine, practitioners of which mistakenly claim it has medicinal benefits ranging from boosting virility to curing cancer, despite there being no scientific evidence to back any of their claims. It is also used for carving and is regarded as a status symbol. Sadly, poaching has ravaged all five rhino species. The smaller black rhino remains critically endangered, with about 5,000 left. Asian species of rhino have suffered even more, with 3,500 Indian one-horned rhinos left in Nepal and India, fewer than 100 Sumatran rhinos (known for their long hair), and only about 60 Javan rhinos left in the world. To read the full details from the South China Morning Post, please click the link in our bio. Photo @love_wild_africa

 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "We couldn’t resist. Happy Valentines Day! Love at the end of the day really is what helps make the world work. 
Photo: M" at Zakouma National Park - 1979165666964165574

We couldn’t resist. Happy Valentines Day! Love at the end of the day really is what helps make the world work. Photo: Michael Viljoen

 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "Can biodiversity targets shape the development agenda? @johnescanlon, Special Envoy to African Parks and former Secretar" at Akagera National Park - 1978482439825033613

Can biodiversity targets shape the development agenda? @johnescanlon, Special Envoy to African Parks and former Secretary-General of @cites, shares his thoughts on how we can help to achieve the @UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by securing and restoring protected areas. He explains that we now have proof of concept of how well-managed protected areas, such as the parks under African Parks’ management through partnerships with government, are linked to local and national development, as well as peace and to prosperity for people and the planet. "We have reached a point where actions will speak much louder than words and our collective efforts to save biodiversity will be achieved by viewing and pursuing conservation through a pragmatic development lens, and the SDGs offer that opportunity". Read his full article by clicking the link in our bio. Photo @love_wild_africa

 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "A global review has just announced that plummeting insect numbers may 'threaten the collapse of nature'. @TheGuardian de" at Liuwa Plain National Park - 1977698586683493092

A global review has just announced that plummeting insect numbers may 'threaten the collapse of nature'. @TheGuardian details how insects could vanish within a century at the current rate of decline, threatening a “catastrophic collapse of nature’s ecosystems”. More than 40% of insect species are declining, and a third are endangered, the scientific analysis published in the journal Biological Conservation found. The rate of extinction is eight times faster than that of mammals, birds and reptiles. The total mass of insects is falling by a steep 2.5% a year, according to the best data available, suggesting they could vanish within a century. The planet is at the start of a sixth mass extinction in its history, with huge losses already reported in larger animals that are easier to study. But insects are by far the most varied and abundant animals, outweighing humanity by 17 times. They are “essential” for the proper functioning of all ecosystems, the researchers say, as food for other creatures, pollinators and recyclers of nutrients. The analysis reported that intensive agriculture is the main driver of the declines, particularly the heavy use of pesticides, urbanisation and climate change are also significant factors. Inside the world’s protected areas there are 15% more individual plants and animals and 11% more species inside than outside protected areas, according to the largest analysis of biodiversity in terrestrial globally protected areas to date. Protected areas have the potential to help us conserve some of the most biodiverse regions on Earth - which is why they need increased global support. With 10.5 million hectares of protected areas currently under management, African Parks is ensuring that we save some of the most ecologically diverse areas on this planet. To read the full @TheGuardian article, please click the link in our bio. Photo: @burrardlucas

Mozambique’s Bazaruto Archipelago National Park is keeping a close eye on commercial fishing vessels in the vicinity. The Parks’ boundaries have often been permeated by illegal fishing vessels intent on poaching from its waters, leading to what could soon result in the demise of pelagic fish stocks and other important species like sharks. The tide, however, is turning. Thanks to our partnership with ANAC, Bazaruto now has the necessary ranger numbers, monitoring protocols and patrol boats in place to clamp down on the entry of illegal vessels. Two such vessels were detected close to the park boundary on the 25th of January around sunset. The following morning at 02:50, three marine intervention teams intercepted and boarded the two Latvian vessels to validate their permits. As no permit for entering the Park was provided, the Ship Captains were informed that their presence in Bazaruto was illegal. Without incident, the ships were calmly escorted out of the park, and the Maritime Authority was informed of their activity. We know this is just the beginning, and it is a small victory, but keeping large-scale illegal fishing vessels at bay and to prevent them from entering the Park is a key priority. This is a sign that the Bazaruto law enforcement team is operational, and their active patrols are in place and can work to keep this threat under control. By protecting the Park, its fish stocks and other marine species, we are ensuring a sustainable seascape that can benefit the thousands of community members who rely on Bazaruto for their long-term future. Well done to our rangers, we know this is the first of many victories to come!

 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "Vultures have returned to the skies of @liwonde_national_park in Malawi. Liwonde is hailing the return of an essential a" at Liwonde National Park - 1974949039294073459

Vultures have returned to the skies of @liwonde_national_park in Malawi. Liwonde is hailing the return of an essential avian species, the vulture, thanks to the effective restoration of the park. Vultures have largely been absent from Liwonde skies for a number of years and their decline was a result of heavy poaching, few predators and poisoning of the park's waterholes. However, since the completion of the perimeter fence in 2017, and several key factors implemented by African Parks management which included the reintroduction of predators to the park, we have seen the return of vultures to the floodplains and woodlands of Liwonde once again. African Parks assumed management of the park in 2015, in partnership with the Malawian Government, and immediately set to work to secure and restore the park to its former glory so that people and wildlife would benefit from the park's existence. Several of Africa's vulture species however – the continent’s largest and most recognisable birds of prey – are now at a higher risk of extinction. The main causes of the drop in their populations are thought to be indiscriminate poisonings where the birds are drawn to poisoned baits, the use of vulture body parts in traditional medicine, and deliberate targeting by poachers, as the presence of vultures can alert authorities to illegally killed big game carcasses. As well as robbing the African skies of one of their most iconic and spectacular groups of birds, the rapid decline of the continent’s vultures has profound consequences for its people – as vultures help stop the spread of diseases by cleaning up rotting carcasses. Protected areas like Liwonde are becoming islands of hope for many endangered species, and we will continue to work tirelessly to ensure they are protected. Photo: Olivia Sievert

 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "We are excited to share that seven previously unknown cheetahs have been spotted by the @zcp_org at @liuwaplainnationalp" at Liuwa Plain National Park - 1974130303217658240

We are excited to share that seven previously unknown cheetahs have been spotted by the @zcp_org at @liuwaplainnationalpark in Zambia! The discovery of these additional cheetahs, a predator listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN Red List, is a significant development as it indicates that the population is continuing to grow, thanks to effective conservation, law enforcement and community engagement. Liuwa has one of the oldest conservation histories in Africa, dating back to the 19th century when the King of Barotseland, Lubosi Lewanika, appointed his people to be the custodians of the park and its wildlife. Before African Parks assumed management of Liuwa in 2003, in partnership with the Zambian Government, wildebeest and zebra were in steep decline, rice fields threatened grasslands, and all but one lonely lioness “Lady Liuwa” roamed the plains. In 2008, African Parks began a series of lion reintroductions to reunite this last lioness with her kind, and thus new life began as she slowly joined a pride that grew to 10 lions. Over the same period, eland and buffalo were reintroduced, and game species started to increase, providing a healthy prey base for the lions, as well as for the cheetahs and hyaenas. As a result of effective law enforcement, poaching levels subsided, and community land-use plans were implemented along with sustainable fish harvesting and other community projects, providing alternative livelihoods for local people. With over 10,000 people living within the park, Liuwa is a living example of how people and wildlife can co-exist and benefit in a shared landscape. Photo: @life.on.the.african.plains

 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "An inquisitive chimpanzee peers into a camera-trap in @chinko.project in the Central African Republic. This extraordinar" at PARC Chinko - 1973522876780640758
PARC Chinko ReportShareDownload161.71K

An inquisitive chimpanzee peers into a camera-trap in @chinko.project in the Central African Republic. This extraordinary protected area, situated in a historically war-torn region plagued by instability and recent years of deadly ethnic violence, is now on the path to becoming an Eden for chimpanzees and other endangered wildlife in Central Africa. Since assuming management of the park in 2014, African Parks has secured this 19,846 km2 landscape through effective law enforcement, keeping the main threats at bay, and a core zone of 10,500 km2 completely free of cattle and other threats (that’s roughly the size of Yellowstone National Park!). Before we signed a 50-year mandate with the government, hundreds of thousands of cattle flooded the park. Today, they are only found on the boundary, and where cattle once grazed, herds of buffalo, hartebeest and hippos have taken their place. Lord Derby eland are on the rise and increasing signs of lions and elephants are being documented. Not only wildlife slowly finding its way back into existence, local people are benefiting from this new security as well. Chinko is the largest employer in the region, and the park funds dozens of nurses and teachers. In restoring security, Chinko has become a primary source of stability and safety in an entire region, for people and wildlife alike, slowly changing the trajectory of this war-torn corner of Africa.

Watch: A herd of elephants wander along the banks of the Shire River as the sun sets in Majete Wildlife Reserve in Malawi. Did you know that African Parks manages four of Malawi's protected areas: Majete Wildlife Reserve, Liwonde National Park, Mangochi Forest Reserve and Nkhotakota Wildlife Reserve and in doing so we are responsible for more than 90% of the country’s elephants? Since 2003, we have remained committed to the restoration and revival of these beautiful and important parks for the benefit of the people and wildlife who live there. Majete Wildlife Reserve, nestled in the southwestern part of Malawi, was the first protected area to join our portfolio and has become an incredible story of resurgence and restoration. Just 16 years ago, this reserve was practically an empty forest. Most wildlife apart from a few remaining antelope had been hunted out. Rhinos and elephants had long disappeared, and even the trees were being illegally harvested for charcoal - leaving behind a reserve devoid of any ecological value as well as seemingly lacking any hope or possibility. But in 2003, African Parks entered into a 25-year agreement with the Malawi DNPW to manage Majete, and together we began to realise a shared vision of restoring the reserve so that wildlife and people could flourish once again. Today, more than 2,500 animals have been reintroduced, including black rhinos, elephants, lions, leopards, sable antelopes, impalas and buffaloes. Not one rhino nor one elephant has been lost to poaching since their reintroductions in 2003 and 2006, and the restoration of the reserve has led to Majete becoming a Big Five reserve and has become Malawi's premier wildlife destination. We would not have been able to restore Majete, or the other parks under our management in Malawi, without the long-term and continued support of key donors like the @peoplespostcodelottery and their players. They have continued to share our vision and are continuing to help us restore hope in this corner of the world. Footage @wesley_hartmann

 image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "A record 8.3 tons of pangolin scales and hundreds of elephant tusks worth more than $8 million combined has been interce" - 1972075359092764491
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A record 8.3 tons of pangolin scales and hundreds of elephant tusks worth more than $8 million combined has been intercepted by Hong Kong customs officers - underscoring the threat to endangered species from demand in Asia. The @WashingtonPost reported that authorities acted on a tip from mainland Chinese authorities, and local officials found the haul in mid-January in a refrigerated container labelled as frozen meat from Nigeria. Officials said the smugglers kept the temperature low to disguise the smell of the illicit cargo better. Police arrested two people in connection with the seizure. It was the largest-ever seizure of pangolin scales in Hong Kong, representing the product of some 14,000 animals, and one of the largest of ivory in a decade. Scales of the anteater-like pangolin have for centuries been highly valued in traditional Chinese medicine. The scales, made of keratin akin to fingernails, are often roasted and ground to a powder before being added into a mix of ingredients which are mistakenly believed to cure arthritis, promote breastfeeding for mothers and boost male virility. To read the full details of the @WashingtonPost story, please click the link in our bio. Photo: @jeromestarkey

 Instagram Image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "Wonderful news from Bazaruto Archipelago National Park Mozambique as they welcome an additional 34 new Rangers to its La" at Bazaruto Archipelago National Park - 1971084726437660754

Wonderful news from Bazaruto Archipelago National Park Mozambique as they welcome an additional 34 new Rangers to its Law Enforcement unit! The sea-faring Ranger force now consists of 56 well equipped, skilled, and motivated guardians of Mozambique’s oldest marine protected area. After undergoing eight weeks of gruelling of physical, practical, and theoretical training, our recruits completed their Basic Field Ranger course in high spirits and were awarded their Graduation certificates by the Director General of Conservation Areas (ANAC) - Dr Mateus Mutemba. A group of 17 female rangers are among the newly qualified law enforcement officers, are have proved themselves to be equally as tough as their male counterparts and just as dedicated to conserving Bazaruto’s critical species and threatened resources. As a testament to this, Inocência Fabião Nhanombe received an award at the ceremony in recognition of her outstanding physical training performance. We’re exceptionally proud of our new recruits who took to the field on their first marine and terrestrial patrols on the 15th of January. Congratulations to each and every one of you - Bazaruto’s bright future is going to be your doing!

 image by AfricanParksNetwork (@africanparksnetwork) with caption : "Are you whom we're looking for? African Parks’ Communications & Marketing division is hiring an experienced Digital Medi" - 1970407014943140622
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Are you whom we're looking for? African Parks’ Communications & Marketing division is hiring an experienced Digital Media & Marketing Specialist to join our team in Johannesburg, South Africa, to help us tell our stories of impact and increase our visibility. To read more about the job and how to apply, please visit the link in our bio, or our careers page on our website at: www.africanparks.org/about-us/careers Photo of Kordofan giraffe in Zakouma National Park, Chad by Michael Viljoen