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World Zoos of Africa
Stay updated on what IZE members in Africa are doing to promote conservation efforts in their areas. Learn about education programs, browse the list of IZE members and their regions, and find contact information for the Regional Representative.
Africa Regional Report by Regional Representative Jone Porter (Sept. 2013)
Animal Keepers Association of Africa Conference hosted by uShaka Sea World in March 2013. This is a far stronger group than Education for PAZAB and Education staff from 4 facilities attended this conference. Two key workshops were given by Steve Martin President of Natural Encounters: ‘The Secret of Animal Training’ and’ Connecting with our Audience’ ( for conservation education). Jone ran a workshop on ‘How to use our animals most effectively to communicate with guests’ focusing on getting the keepers to look at their exhibits through the guests eyes - guests viewing of exhibits and how they relate to different animals.
Two Oceans Aquarium is leading a campaign to Rethink the Bag’ and ban the use of single use plastic bags. This concept has been shared at AKAA Conference and at the 1st African Marine Debris Summit.
The South African Sustainable Seafood Initiative promoted by most zoos and aquaria in South Africa has launched an App for blackberry and iOS smart phones. All the assessments were revised in 2012 and of the approximately 100 species assessed, two species have moved to the green list and two have moved out of the green list. This programme is on the verge of starting in Mozambique and Tanzania with long negotiatons with the relevant government departments and universities specialising in fisheries management.
Most facilities ran a special day for Marine Week, Earthhour, Vulture Day and African Penguin Day.
The annual Penguin Waddle held in April attracted the biggest crowds so far and there were 16 participants from 6 organisations
Elize de Jager reports that the National Zoological Gardens of South Africa (NZG) hosted yet another successful Biodiversity Youth Symposium on 3 August 2013. This annual event is aimed at encouraging young scientists to present their research findings to an audience. More than 300 learners attended the symposium, which was held at the NZG’s Education Centre. The proud overall winner was Jason van Heerden from Pretoria Boys High School for his outstanding presentation titled “Stinky to sparkling Magaliesberg water - supporting a biodiverse range of aquatic life”. For his study he compared the water quality of two points along the Maretlwane River and below the Hartebeespoort dam wall.
Another exciting competition is the Life Science Competition which is also held annually, around the time of the Youth Day celebration (16 June). The Life Science Competition is open to Grade 10 life science learners. The learners are quizzed based on the life science curriculum.
NZG are also focusing on rhino conservation and had various activities for their “Save the Rhino” campaign, which included school debates and talks by veterinarians and conservators about anti-poaching and rhino conservation issues.
Tatum van Soelen of the Wildlife and Environment Society of Southern Africa reports:
The Orange – Senqu River Learning Box Project is an innovative and creative education response to the sustainable water resources management needs of the Orange-Senqu River Basin. It is a partnership project between South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana and Namibia. The overall objective of the Orange – Senqu River Learning Box Project is to develop learner educational materials that introduce issues concerning the Basin, in schools, and provide educational resource materials for 10-12 year old school children who will learn to understand and promote sustainable water resource development and management in the Basin.
The ‘Stepping Up to Sustainability’ project is supported by USAID and implemented through WESSA. The goal is to put into practice the lifestyle choices that we all need to make as we seek to change our environmental footprints into environmental handprints of practice for a more sustainable future. The WESSA Treasure beach centre is one of 11 “Sustainability Commons” established across SA that offer public access to various sustainability practices and technologies. Through presentations, workshops and courses people have an opportunity to learn about things like renewable energy technologies; conserving water; protecting and enhancing biodiversity; and reducing, sorting and managing waste better. Participant are invited to make a “Change Choice”, where even the smallest change can make a big difference in enhancing sustainable livelihoods. After implementing their change choices, the participants are asked to share their “Stories of Change” that are then published in the “Step by Step, Stories of Change” book.
The aim of the Mondi Climate Change Schools Programme is to assist schools and educators in becoming self- sufficient in terms of their environmental performance with respect to adapting and responding to present and future environmental pressures arising out of global climate change. The project works with 5 schools within the South Durban basin. The schools learn about their local environment and take action at their school. Learners are given an opportunity to experience nature and explore the wonders of the rock pools at Treasure Beach, through hands-on activities they learn in, about and for the environment. The learners also do a permaculture course that provides the schools with tools to start their own food gardens at school as a means of adapting to climate change.
Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary, Uganda
The Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund (DWCF) has announced Silver James Birungi as a Disney Conservation Hero. He has been recognized for his passion and dedication to protecting chimpanzees and their habitats in Uganda.
Silver has traveled across Uganda to raise awareness and help change minds, attitudes, behaviors and actions; reaching more than 11,673 students in nearly 200 schools, as well as 8,000 community members.
David Musingo, Head of Education reports that the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre (UWEC) is implementing Community Conservation and Management of Wildlife through an ostrich farming and ecotourism development in Karamoja region, North Eastern Uganda. Karamoja is the only region in Uganda where Ostriches are endemic and the area covers the communities neighboring Kidepo Valley National Park, Matheniko, Pian Upe and Bokora wildlife reserves. Other wildlife that are endemic to this region include the Caracals, Cheetah, African hunting dogs, Roan Antelopes and variety of plant and bird species. The region is semi arid and inhabited by the nomadic tribe called karamojongs.
During the political instability in Uganda between 1979 and 1986, the karamojongs acquired fire arms from army deserters and have been using these arms to poach wildlife for commercial reasons. This has seen the number of species like Buffalos, Ostriches, Rothschild Giraffes, Antelopes and others decline tremendously.
Therefore, to reduce pressure on wildlife poaching and habitat destruction in this region, UWEC has started a project called “Community Conservation and Management of Wildlife through Ostrich farming and Ecotourism development for livelihood improvement in Karamoja”.
The projects intends to address the following objectives; (a) to empower community members with skills and knowledge in the breeding, raising and marketing of ostriches and their products, (b) to enhance alternative livelihood for community members through ecotourism development, (c) to reduce pressure on the poaching of Ostriches, Rothschild Giraffes and other wildlife species and (d) to create awareness and promote appreciation of wildlife and environmental management.
Uganda Wildlife Education Centre is grateful to Santa Barbara Zoo, USA for donating the Incubator and Hatchery that will be used for breeding Ostriches using the captive stock at UWEC for eventual distribution to the model farmers in Karamoja regions and for replication elsewhere.
The Incubator and Hatchery that were donated to UWEC by Santa Barbara Zoo, USA
The UWEC team has been the in the field to document the local treasurers that will promote ecotourism, enhance wildlife conservation and improve livelihood in the region.
To instill stewardship and appreciation of nature among young people for positive action, UWEC is involved in promoting environmental clubs in schools through district chairpersons and patrons in collaboration with Wildlife Clubs of Uganda. The Conservation Education programs will be integrated into the school curriculum with the guidance from the Ministry of Education and Sports and National Curriculum Development Centre.
UWEC staff posing for a group photo with Karamojongs at their homestead (Manyata)
Africa Membership List
IZE Membership is based on the calendar year from January 1-December 31. If you would like learn more about becoming an IZE member, please visit the Become a Member page.
If you have any questions regarding your membership, please email the IZE Administrator at email@example.com.
The IZE Membership List is updated quarterly. This list was last updated August 23, 2013.
||Ape Action Africa (PASA)
||Save the Elephants
||Dian Fossey Gorilla Foundation
||Umgeni River Bird Park
||National Zoological Gardens of South Africa
||Seaworld Education Centre, SAAMBR
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