Category Archives: wildlife

THE REBELLION BEGINS ON BLACK FRIDAY

Tune into the Savage Kingdom on Black Friday while you recover from all the crazy sales and shopping of the day! Called “nature television as Shakespearean drama” this season brings rebellion as the sins of the lion king are carried out by his sons. Nat Geo WILD’s Savage Kingdom returns with Savage Kingdom: Uprising, a four-part global miniseries series event that tells an unvarnished tale of survival on the African plains. No better night to debut this competitive savagery than Black Friday.

Savage Kingdom: Uprising premieres Friday, Nov. 24, 9/8c on Nat Geo WILD and globally in 140 countries and 37 languages. For more information, visit www.natgeowild.com.

Emmy-nominated actor Charles Dance (“Game of Thrones”) returns to narrate Savage Kingdom: Uprising, a rare look at warring animal clans battling for survival in a remote region of Africa that is drying up after years of flood-soaked abundance. The winners are rewarded with the richest hunting grounds in the kingdom, while the losers are fated to exile … or even death.

“When we introduced the world to the Savage Kingdom last year, it was our version of a real-life ‘Game of Thrones’ that pushed serialized dramatic storytelling in this genre to the next level,” said Geoff Daniels, executive vice president and general manager, Nat Geo WILD. “No spoilers, but rest assured the new season is as visually stunning, intimate and intense as anything we have ever done.”

Savage Kingdom: Uprising returns to the remote wilderness of Africa to delve deeper into the individual characters and reveals the life and death decisions that drive survival in their ruthless and unpredictable world. The story continues as sons plot to overthrow fathers, clans seek revenge on their enemies and new arrivals enter the Savage Kingdom to stake their claim.

Chobe National Park, Botswana – Playing amongst each other is the easiest way for the sub-adults of the Marsh Pride to learn the necessary skills to become the hunters that they are destined to become. These games are often the reason why youngsters end up with little scars on their faces or nicks in their ears. Here two of the sub-adult males and a sub-adult female are jumping on top of each other at the edge of a natural water hole south of Matsibi Island into the open Marsh.(National Geographic/NHFU)

Will the aging lion king Sekekama hold on to his bloody crown? Has the leopard prince Neo inherited enough talent from his mother to survive? How will the lions of the Northern Pride wreak their revenge on queen Matsumi? Leaders will rise and factions will fall. No one is safe in the Savage Kingdom.

Savage Kingdom Premieres:

Savage Kingdom: Uprising: The Enemy Within
Premieres Friday, Nov. 24
Male lion Sekekama, the undisputed king of the Marsh Pride, must contend with his three eldest sons who are hungry for power. On the outskirts of their territory, the Northern Pride is growing a bloodthirsty lion army, preparing for revenge against its sworn enemy. Meanwhile, the kingdom’s deadliest leopard assassin, Saba, works tirelessly to make sure her only son follows in her deadly footsteps.

Savage Kingdom: Uprising: First Blood
Premieres Friday, Dec. 1
Neo must prepare for life as a solitary assassin, but his future hangs in the balance when his mother is left seriously injured after fighting for their fortress. Pressure mounts as Neo grows stronger and his own father, Dark Eyes, wants him out. Meanwhile, on the edges of the Marsh, the vengeful Northern queens suffer a cruel blow to their growing pride when their drifter king returns.

Savage Kingdom: Uprising: Reign of Traitors
Premieres Friday, Dec. 8
The Marsh Pride reaches its breaking point as Sekekama struggles to suppress the rebellion of his three treacherous sons and protect his kingdom. As the Great Marsh withers in the grip of the dry season, Zalika, the hyena queen, raises new troops to prepare for her moment of triumph. And the vagabond Pale Pack of wild dogs fights for survival, driven to desperate lengths for food.

Savage Kingdom: Uprising: King Slayers
Premieres Friday, Dec. 15 as part of Big Cat Week
The Marsh Pride’s aging king, Sekekama, is forced to lead his family into hostile territory on a mission to save them from a vicious drought gripping the kingdom. His great gamble leads him into a bloody contest against rivals old and new. But his control over one treacherous son will determine Sekekama’s hold on power, and the future of his own legacy.

The last episode of Savage Kingdom: Uprising premieres on the last day of Nat Geo WILD’s Big Cat Week, running Sun, Dec. 10 through Friday, Dec. 15. The buzzworthy Big Cat Week includes innovative new specials featuring world-renowned storytellers. National Geographic photographers Steve Winter and Bertie Gregory track down and capture incredible footage of Brazil’s top predator in Jaguar vs. Croc; famed wildlife filmmaker Bob Poole reveals the intimate story of a cheetah mother and her cubs in Man Among Cheetahs; three prides of lions battle over territory, food and power in the dramatic special Lion Kingdom; and we reveal the secrets of a legendary tigress that famously reigned over her territory in western region of India in the new special The World’s Most Famous Tiger.

Savage Kingdom is produced by Icon Films and Natural History Film Unit Botswana for Nat Geo WILD. Icon Films executive producers are Harry Marshall and Laura Marshall, and series producer is Lucy Meadows. Natural History Film Unit Botswana producer is Brad Bestelink. For Nat Geo WILD, executive producer is Ashley Hoppin, senior vice president of development and production is Janet Han Vissering and executive vice president and general manager is Geoff Daniels.

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The No. 2 Week of Sharks Returns! #SharkFest

SharkFest, television’s second-best-known week of sharks, returns to Nat Geo WILD on Sunday, July 23 at 8 PM ET. In addition, decorated Olympian Ryan Lochte makes a splash to help spread the word about the most sharks per square inch on television.

A large Lemon Shark gulps down a large tuna head in front of a crowd of divers, Fiji.

Celebrating its fifth anniversary, SharkFest presents factual shark stories incorporating innovative research technology to reveal compelling insight on some of the most unique shark species in the world. With the help of scientists and shark experts, SharkFest will deliver the facts and raise awareness about these “jawsome” animals in more than 131 countries and 38 languages.

We are so excited, there are some seriously amazing shows lined up. Sharks are amazing, and the shark experts have so much interesting info to share. You are not going to want to miss it!

Shark v Predator
Premieres Sunday, July 23 8/7c
SharkFest kicks off with a look at the animals that dare to take on sharks. Seals, crocodiles, octopi, bobcats and even birds have gone head to head with these elite killers, and we’ve uncovered the footage to prove it. Watch rare moments when a shark ends up on the receiving end of an attack. It’s time for nature’s ultimate underwater showdown.

Tiger Shark Terror
Premieres Monday, July 24 8/7c
Every diver has been warned that sharks feed at night, but is this a myth or does the truth lurk somewhere deep beneath the waves? Professional shark diver Eli Martinez and scientist Matthew Smukall plunge into the nighttime world of Tiger Beach to investigate whether shark behavior changes once the sun goes down.

Mission Critical: Sharks Under Attack
Special Encore Airs Monday, July 24 10/9c
National Geographic underwater photographer and Instagram star Brian Skerry is on a mission to change the perception of our oceans’ greatest predators – sharks. After three decades capturing the world’s oceans on camera, Skerry knows sharks as kings of the oceans that keep these fragile ecosystems functioning, not as violent “Jaws”-like man-eaters.

Shark Swarm
Premieres Tuesday, July 25 8/7c
Across the vast oceans are underwater oases where sharks congregate in huge numbers. What is the attraction at these mysterious waypoints? Join shark scientist Riley Elliott on a unique expedition as he investigates some of the largest and most mysterious shark gatherings on the planet.

World’s Deadliest: Shark Frenzy!
Premieres Wednesday, July 26, 8/7c
The deep blue sea is a majestic place explored by many, but it also holds some of the world’s deadliest apex predators … sharks! These savage killers have one thing in common: the need to feed. In their quest, they use sheer force, technique and genetics to achieve their ultimate goal.

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Ghost of the Mountains

To bring Disneynature’s Born in China to life, filmmakers endure extreme environments to witness stories of some of our planet’s most remarkable animals. Go behind the scenes on one of the team’s most ambitious projects yet – to find and film the elusive snow leopard in China, on the highest plateau on Earth. The air is thin, the weather brutal, the terrain tricky, and the subjects nearly impossible to locate – and even tougher to capture on film. Ghost of the Mountains documents the crew’s historic and groundbreaking journey.

Ghost of the Mountains

Available Now for Purchase Digitally & On Demand
. Check out the trailer below, it looks amazing! The feature also comes with three bonuses:

Hiding Up High – A crew sets out to capture the remarkable migration of the chiru antelope, the highest-altitude migration in the world.

Disneynature: Get Inspired, Get Involved – Connect with nature and make a difference for wildlife with help from Disneynature and the Disney Conservation Fund.

Disneynature Dolphins Sneak Peek – Dive into a spectacular undersea world with Echo in this first look at Disneynature’s upcoming new adventure.

We can’t wait to watch! What about you?

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4 Famous African Animals That Have Made an Impact on the World

By Cristina Costea

elephants

One of the most significant reasons people go on safaris is the animals. Getting to see the majestic African beasts in their natural habitat is one of the most precious memories a person can make in their lifetime. 

Unfortunately, poaching has greatly reduced the numbers of the big five and other majestic African animals. According to numerous statistics, including the African Wildlife Foundation, if the current poaching rates are kept up, rhinos, elephants and other African wildlife may become extinct within our lifetime.

Today, we’re going to take a look at 4 famous African animals that have left their print on the world, but who have been taken from us too early.
 
4. Wozani, the Black Rhino

rhinoImage source: Express.co.uk

The black rhino is a critically endangered animal, which means that there is pretty much only a handful of them out there. Wozani was a black rhino male that wandered from the Kruger National Park in South Africa and was shot to death by poachers. They took parts of his foot, his tail and his tusk.
It is believed that Wozani strayed from the park in search of his beloved mate, Busa, that had been killed by poachers a month prior to his death. Wozani was beloved by many, and what made him endearing was his cute face that looked as if he was getting ready to plant a big, wet kiss on someone’s face. Just look at that cute face!
Did you know that in 2014, a permit to kill one of the 18 black rhinos that Namibia considered past their prime and  a threat to younger rhinos was sold for $350,000? Apparently, the money went to fund anti-poaching efforts in Namibia. A bit ironic, isn’t it?
 
3. Huberta the Hippo

hippoImage source: AtlasObscura.com 

Huberta is one of the most famous animals in the history of Africa. Her strange name comes from the fact that people thought she was a male and called her Hubert. But following her death, it was revealed that she was actually a female, thus Huberta. What made Huberta famous and loved by many was her journey. In November 1928, she decided to leave her familiar surroundings and head towards the Eastern Cape. She traveled for three years, a total of 1,000 miles (1,600 km), becoming a symbol of hope and perseverance.

Nobody really knows why she up and left, maybe it was to look for a mate or to retrace the steps of her hippo ancestors, but what people do know is that her journey inspired many. Often the tales of African animals end on a sad note, and Huberta’s story is no different. Even though she was declared a “Royal Game” which made it illegal for hunters to kill her, she was still shot to death by poachers in 1931.
Following her death, she was taxidermied in London and returned to South Africa in 1932. Her story inspired Edmund Lindop to write the 1961’s children’s book Hubert, the Traveling Hippopotamus.
 
2. Satao the Elephant

elephantImage source: Wikipedia.org

It’s hard to imagine killing a majestic elephant for its tusks, but sadly, this happens so often that it is threatening the elephant population. After having roamed Kenya for 45 years, Satao, an African elephant with tusks so big that they almost reached the ground, was killed in 2014, his tusks were taken  from him and his face was mutilated to avoid identification.
 
In 2013 alone, over 20,000 African elephants were slaughtered for their tusks. Ivory sells for several thousand dollars per pound and Satao’s were estimated to weigh around 200 pounds (45 kg).

Here is the heartbreaking statement that let the world know of Satao’s death: “It is with enormous regret that we confirm there is no doubt that Satao is dead, killed by an ivory poacher’s poisoned arrow to feed the seemingly insatiable demand for ivory in far off countries. A great life lost so that someone far away can have a trinket on their mantelpiece. Rest in peace, Old Friend, you will be missed.”
 
1. Cecil the Lion 

lionImage source: KTLA.com

Cecil the lion was one of the most famous lions on the African continent. It lived in Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park, where he was admired and protected. Cecil was born in 2002 and on July 1st 2015, Walter Palmer, an American dentist and big-game hunter killed him with a crossbow, after having lured him out of the park. Palmer allegedly paid a whopping $50,000 and was helped by two locals to track and hunt Cecil, a Southwest African lion.

The news of the murder went viral and the outrage helped add two subspecies of lion to the endangered species list. This means that American hunters will have a much more difficult time killing those types of lions, including Cecil’s subspecies, the Southwest African lion.

Walter Palmer walked away a free man after having killed Cecil and the government of Zimbabwe even mentioned that he is welcomed back in the country but as a tourist and not a hunter.
 
About Cristina Costea
Cristina is a writer for BookAllSafaris.com. She is a passionate traveler, cat aficionado and novice writer.

Posted in guest post, wildlife | 1 Comment