Archive for ‘5 Fascinating Facts About …’

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Mike Unwin - 22 Sep 2017

The black rhino is the rarer and smaller of Africa’s two rhino species, and also distinguished from the larger white rhino by its shape, diet and temperament. It is no more ‘black’, however, than its relative is white: both species acquire their colour from the mud in which they wallow, so vary from brown to grey.

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Mike Unwin - 22 Aug 2017

Jackals have never really made the safari A list. Derided in Kipling’s Jungle Book as ‘dish-lickers’, they seldom get the attention they deserve on a Big Five safari. Yet in many areas, these are the most abundant of the mammalian carnivores and the closer you look, the more compelling they become…

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Mike Unwin - 27 Jun 2017

The leopard (after the lion) is the second largest of Africa’s big cats. Of all the celebrated ‘Big Five’ it has perhaps the greatest allure, due to its enigmatic combination of grace, power and elusiveness…

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Mike Unwin - 22 Jun 2017

This towering tree-muncher occurs across subSaharan Africa in nine different subspecies. These are distinguished from one another by their different patterns of blotches, but all share the extraordinarily long neck – of course –and many other peculiarities besides.

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Mike Unwin - 30 May 2017

Chimpanzees stand alongside gorillas as Africa’s only great apes and are the closest living relatives of humans. The common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) is the best known of two species – the other being the bonobo, which is smaller…

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Mike Unwin - 27 Apr 2017

This huge, grey waterbird, also known as a whale-headed stork, derives its name Shoebill (Balaeniceps rex), from its massive bill, which resembles a traditional Dutch clog, with a sharp nail-like hook on the end…

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Mike Unwin - 28 Mar 2017

The Nile monitor (Varanus niloticus) is a hefty reptile, also known as the water monitor, and Africa’s longest lizard, sometimes reaching lengths of over 2 metres – of which more than half is tail…

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Mike Unwin - 28 Feb 2017

The Caracal (Felis caracal) is an elegant, medium-sized cat which is widespread in open country across much of Africa. Elusive and largely nocturnal, it is seldom seen on safari – although smaller reserves in South Africa’s Cape and Karoo have a good reputation for sightings…

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Mike Unwin - 23 Jan 2017

The Blue Wildebeest, a grazing herd animal has achieved fame as the key player in the Serengeti’s ‘Great Migration’, which is routinely described as the greatest animal show on earth…

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Mike Unwin - 17 May 2016

These scavenging raptors are the hyenas of the skies, playing a vital ecological clean-up role by disposing of decomposing carcasses. Broad wings allow Vultures to soar…

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