Africa my Africa (Page 2)

Serabi
Serabi:

The title of the clip should read Baby elephant meets new family...



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Serabi
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Bumpa
Bumpa: Thanks so much for sharing these with us Serabi. It's obvious why people have been fascinated with Africa for so long.
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Serabi
Serabi:

This is why I love Africa. I can bitch and moan about civilisation going to the dogs but the open spaces and wildlife is exquisite.

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Bumpa
Bumpa: The decimation of the wildlife is disgusting though. Just to feed some horny old Asian blokes desire for an erection again. The sight of that Rhino with its horn chopped off while still alive made me sick. I just hope he was able to use it on the poachers first.
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Serabi
Serabi:

No, unfortunately not. We are losing our rhinos at more than 1/day!!! A rhino has no defense against an AK-47 (freedom fighters gun)

This clip is just too beautiful, sit back and enjoy it!



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Bumpa
Bumpa: Awwww, so sweet
Are the ear flapping and trunk curling aggression displays? This would be wise to be aware of if I'm to visit
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Serabi
Serabi:

No, the 2 older ones are just gently sparring. The little tyke is just a few months old, the middle one is way too young to even know that he is male.

They are more caressing each other. the larger one may even be the 'nanny'.

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Bumpa
Bumpa: OK, I'd also noticed the same display in an adult bull in another of you vids, labelled "Angry elephant"
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Serabi
Serabi:

Ear flapping is more of a warning sign. Look at me, I AM BIG!

Kids play that game too, without the aggression.

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Bumpa
Bumpa: Flumps don't need to wave their ears for me to realise they're big!
I remember a smallish one looming at me out of the dark in Thailand to beg a banana from me.... I almost needed clean undies
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Serabi
Serabi:

Well, a mature African elephant bull can weigh 6 tonnes! The asian elephants are much smaller than African elephants but can be more dangerous because of their close ties with humans.

The Kruger elephants have never been hunted, so there is not that much animosity towards man. There is a fascinating documentary called 'War Elephants'. In Mozambique’s Gorongosa National Park, elephants are in crisis: Years of civil war and ivory poaching have left them frightened and hostile toward humans. In a new National Geographic Television film, the world’s foremost elephant researcher Dr. Joyce Poole, in a documentary by her brother, cameraman Bob Poole, works to build trust and retrain the animals away from their violent behavior. It will bring you to tears!

Aww, sweet!



Please not that a lot of these clips were not taken by myself. Full credit to a lot of people for taking the photos and videos.
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Serabi
Serabi:

The most amazing video ever filmed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

YouTube

Wildlife photographers film for years without seeing anything like this. It couldn't have been scripted better.

(Edited by Serabi)
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Bumpa
Bumpa: LOVE this one. Cow beats up lion
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Serabi
Serabi:

Can you believe the calf survived the lions and a crocodile? This is a amazing video! Make no mistake - a buffalo is not a cow. Buffaloes hate lions, they stink and they stomp lion cubs to death. I don't like them.

More to follow tomorrow...
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Bumpa
Bumpa: Buffalo is still a member of the bovine family Hun. I was insulting the lions which aren't my favourite animals.
I really thought the little fella was buggered when the croc turned up. He's gonna have some interesting scars to show the girls when he grows up.
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Serabi
Serabi:

It was a miracle for the little one to get up and walk away. I don't, however, have much hope for its future There were serious injuries inflicted. The lions bit down on its muzzle, there are serious implications.

Buffaloes are very cunning. It is the most dangerous animal to hunt. I REALLY detest them. I root for the lions! In years past we would sit in our car and wait for an hour while a whole herd pass. Now the herds number less and less. The lions are are being dessimated by their prey - the buffalo! There was/is bovine TB, carried by the buffalo. The predators, all, are contracting TB. Even the smaller cats are at risk. In a previos video clip, I voiced concern over a pride with cubs filmed. An adolecent male is painfully emaciated - my calculated guess is TB.

During serious droughts in the Kruger, Anthrax fares up sporadically. A terrible calamity!

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Serabi
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Bumpa
Bumpa: I admire the buffalo because it IS so dangerous. I don't know why I dislike lions, I can't explain it, perhaps a lioness reminds me too much of my ex wife
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Bumpa
Bumpa: I have my doubts about bovine TB afftecting other species, we have it here in NZ where it is spread by deer, wild pigs, possums and stoats. It infects domestic cattle but doesn't affect other species. Beef from an infected cow is safe for human consumption but usually so skinny its not nice to eat.
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Serabi
Serabi:

Kruger lions in the claws of TB scourge


Nelspruit - Conservationists are so worried about the impact of tuberculosis (TB) on the region's wild cat populations that they launched a week-long festival in Mpumalanga on Monday to raise funds to combat the dreaded disease.

The statistics are frightening: up to 90 percent of the lions in the south of the Kruger National Park tested positive for TB in recent tests. The tests also showed that the lion population in the south of the park has halved since TB was first diagnosed in its big cats in 1995.

Infection rates in the park's northern and central regions range from 10 percent to just over 50 percent.

The disease, which the carnivores pick up when they eat infected carcasses of buffalo and kudu, has spread to cheetah in the south of the park, and the Mpumalanga Parks Board (MPB) recently found a genet which had been infected.

Scientists theorise that TB was brought into the park in the late 1950s or early 1960s by buffalo which had been grazing among infected cattle. It's a foreign disease, and wild animals have no immunity to it.

Some scientists fear that TB may virtually eliminate lions from the Lowveld area within the next five years, said Rajeev Jadoo, marketing manager for the northern region of Vodacom, which is sponsoring the week-long Lion Festival.

Vaccination is not feasible because there is no effective vaccine available. Even if there was, the financial and logistical implications would be huge. So professional conservationists and wildlife managers are considering other options.

A favoured option is to create satellite populations of "clean" wild lions in TB-free areas. The most suitable at the moment is the 23 000ha Loskop Dam Nature Reserve.

But the fencing needs to be upgraded and a holding facility for lions constructed. This will cost about R2,5 million.

Funds raised during the Lion Festival will go towards such expenses, and for further research into the disease by the MPB and the Kruger park.

Vodacom and a Lowveld newspaper, co-sponsor of the event, aim to make the Lion Festival an annual affair - doing for conservation and the environment what the Standard Bank Grahamstown Festival has done for arts and culture.

The line-up of festivities in and around Nelspruit in the coming week includes a stand-up comedy evening called Sex, Bugs and Rock 'n Roll; the screening of wildlife films at schools; a golf day at White River; an evening of classical music with Tessa Ziegler and SA's three tenors; also a cabaret breakfast with The Coverboys; and a carnival next weekend with street processions and entertainment by Abigail Khubeka, Robbie Clay, Andre Schwartz and Sonja Herholdt.

More:-

The disease also afflicts animals in the Serengeti grasslands and woodlands in northern Tanzania and southern Kenya. But according to Craig Packer, professor of zoology at the University of Minnesota, TB isn't as important an issue there.

"While it seems that TB is a worse problem in Kruger than elsewhere, it is still not clear that the disease is as devastating as people originally claimed," he said. "While we still have TB in Tanzania, it isn't a problem that we worry much about."

Dewald Keet, the chief veterinarian at Kruger National Park, does worry. He said that bovine tuberculosis is an ever-increasing threat to Kruger lions. But because TB is increasing at a slow rate, people may have the mistaken impression that it has stabilized.

"Nothing is being done to control the disease except research," he said. According to Keet, the prevalence of the disease in lions in the southern half of the park varies between 68 percent and 78 percent.

He explained that lions first contracted the disease when eating infected buffalo carcasses, and the southern region of the park is where TB prevalence is highest in African buffalo. Lions in Kruger are also infecting each other through biting and aerosol transmission, Keet said.

About 105 lions die of TB every year in Kruger, but even more important is the effect of the disease on lion social behavior. Males are weakened by the chronic disease, and this, Keet said, leads to "faster territorial male turnover and consequent infanticide, eviction of entire prides, and a decrease in average longevity."

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Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a lentivirus that infects both wild and domestic feline species and is closely related to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Species-specific strains of FIV have been isolated from the domestic cat, puma, lion, leopard, and Pallas’ cat. In the domestic cat, the virus is present in blood and saliva, and biting is believed to be the most common way the virus is transmitted among the cats. Domestic cats infected with FIV develop changes in the numbers of T lymphocyte cells over a period of months to years, analogous to those seen with HIV/AIDS in people. While FIV infection is usually associated with abnormal T lymphocyte counts, this does not necessarily result in a compromised immune system. Some infected domestic cats develop clinical problems resulting in increased mortality, while others show no signs of illness and have a normal life expectancy.
FIV infection in wild African lions has not been associated with overt clinical signs and there is no evidence that FIV infection results in increased mortality. Some FIV-infected captive lions have displayed the same changes in T lymphocyte counts as exhibited by infected domestic cats but there is little evidence that infection results in clinical signs or increased mortality.

African lions in eastern and southern Africa have the highest prevalence of FIV infection of any wild feline with nearly 100% of adults infected in several areas. Although recognized only in the last few decades, FIV has been present in wild lion populations for prolonged periods, possibly many thousands of years. The most detailed studies of FIV have been conducted on the lions of the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, where the lion strain was first recognized in the mid-1980s. Long-term studies of individuals sampled in the 1980s and 1990s showed no difference in survival between animals that were infected at an early age vs. those infected at a later age. During a severe outbreak of canine distemper virus (CDV) in the Serengeti in 1994, FIV-infected animals were no more likely to die from CDV than animals that were not infected with FIV. In addition, the Serengeti lion population has doubled over the past 10 yrs, so these lions are clearly vigorous despite the ubiquity of the virus.

The lions of Kruger National Park, South Africa are infected with FIV at a similar rate (and for at least as long) as the Serengeti lions. Accordingly, it is unlikely that FIV alone represents a health threat to Kruger lions. The prime health threat to the Kruger lions is considered to be the recent spread into the population of bovine tuberculosis (bTB) caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium bovis. Mycobacterium bovis causes disease in felids regardless of their FIV status. Whether the course of M. bovis infection in FIV-infected lions is different has not been determined.

Although bTB and CDV can cause serious health problems in lions, it is unlikely that FIV poses a serious threat to lions where FIV has been present for extended periods of time. Of the lion populations tested to date, only those in Etosha National Park, Namibia and Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Reserve, South Africa (and satellite populations of these established by translocations) have tested negative. However, recent testing suggests that these populations may be infected with a different strain not detected using earlier methodologies. If any of these populations are truly FIV-negative, these lions may not be resistant to FIV-induced disease as they have not had a chance to adapt to the virus during evolution. Therefore, when translocating lions between populations, prudence suggests not introducing FIV-infected lions into FIV-negative lion populations.

The last 2 are older articles.


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Serabi
Serabi:

Newer.

International Wildlife Tuberculosis Conference
A specialist M. bovis Conference for those interested in wildlife TB
9 - 12 September 2012 Kruger National Park, South Africa

This conference will bring together in the heart of the world famous Kruger National Park researchers, conservationists and policy makers interested in and concerned with wildlife tuberculosis throughout the world. This will be an exciting midterm event supported by the initiators of the series of International Mycobacterium bovis conferences

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Bumpa
Bumpa: I'm surprised to read that Serabi, of course we have no wild felines in NZ except for escaped domestic cats. We may need to look into the possibility of them spreading the disease.
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