May 2007 Travel Zambia 15 Good news for Zambia’s wild dogs: latest studies, based on 2006 field data, reveal that South Luangwa National Park has more of these endangered predators than was previously thought. Up to 100 adults, to be precise. “This may be one the more significant populations left in Africa,” says Dr. Kellie Leigh, of the African Wild Dog Conservation (AWDC) study team. AWDC, a Zambian-based NGO, was first established in the Lower Zambezi National Park in 1999 and expanded into South Luangwa last year. It now aims to establish a viable population of wild dogs in eastern Zambia by linking the populations in these two areas. Since African wild dogs cover such huge Born again Black rhinos are breeding in Zambia for the first time in over 25 years, reports Jake da Motta. On 28 November 2006, scouts from the North Luangwa Conservation Project (NLCP) spotted a tiny baby following its mother through the dense bush of North Luangwa National Park. This confirmed what they’d hoped after spotting the telltale tracks a few weeks earlier. Pupils at local Mukungule School named the new arrival Twibukishe, meaning ‘we remember’, in honour of the many black rhinos that perished in the Luangwa Valley during the 1980s. Twibukishe is the fruit of a relocation project that started in 2003, when five black rhinos were donated to North Luangwa from South Africa – followed by ten more in 2006. Their new home has provided some challenges for the newcomers, and two females have died. Nonetheless NLCP rangers report that the rhinos’ condition has benefited from the recent heavy rains, which have made food and water easier to find. The project has been judged such a success that plans are afoot to relocate ten more animals in 2008. This would bring the total to 25, a viable nucleus on which to rebuild a population. But their security remains paramount: “Twibukishe is an effective reminder that if we are to succeed in the future, we must not forget the past,” says NLCP’s Jessica Groendendijk. NLCP is supported by the Frankfurt Zoological Society. The black rhino project is assisted by the Zambia Wildlife Authority, South African National Parks, the South African North West Parks and Eastern Cape Parks Boards. Find out more at www.fzs.org Work is progressing towards the establishment of an ambitious new Transfrontier Conservation Area (TFCA) across Zambia’s eastern boundary with Malawi. The proposed park will link Malawi’s Nyika National park and Vwaza Marsh Wildlife Reserve with Zambia’s Lundazi Forest Reserve. Further south it will also link Malawi’s ........Kasungu National Park and Zambia’s Lukusuzi National Park................. The aim, ultimately, is to incorporate more than 35,000 km2 of parks and reserves into a single conservation corridor linking Malawi’s Nyika Plateau with Zambia’s Luangwa Valley. A memorandum of understanding signed between the governments of Malawi and Zambia in.n.n.n.n.n.n.n.n.n... August 2004 kick-started the process. An international distances, AWDC is using them to promote large-scale habitat conservation that will also benefit many other species. Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) Netherlands, who provided baseline funding for the project, have pledged further financial assistance over the next three years to enable AWDC to increase its activities. AWDC has also received logistical support from Robin Pope Safaris, whose camp at Nkwali provides a base for Kellie. As well as studying wild dogs, AWDC supplies important data on other wildlife to the Zambian Wildlife Authority, and is contributing to community education and conservation initiatives. Find out more at www.awdczambia.org Reservoir of dogstreaty is now imminent. Meanwhile the Peace Parks Foundation (www.peaceparks.org) has helped implement a highly successful law enforcement support project, which bodes well both for wildlife and tourism. Local conservation charities, including ..............the Nyika-Vwaza Trust (www.nyika-vwaza-trust.org), are working closely with the local community to repair the park’s infrastructure and develop community-based tourism. Crossing borders ALEX BARETT FRANCOIS D’ELBEE MIKE UNWIN Roan antelope thrive on Nyika Plateau. Each individual wild dog can be identified by its unique pattern.
In August 2006, pupils and staff at Uyoba Community School, Mfuwe, brought a splash of colour to their community with this gorgeous mural. With the help of Mike Unwin, a volunteer at the school, they brought to life the ideas and sketches they had generated in the classroom. The mural depicts in detail the wildlife, people and landscapes of the surrounding Luangwa Valley. Uyoba Community School was established in 1994 to help parents who could not afford fees for government schools, and to create a learning environment where no uniforms or shoes were required. It is ........supported by the South Luangwa Conservation Society Lusaka is hosting the second Africa Freedom Dance Festival on 25–26 May 2007. The festival aims to showcase the diversity of dance and culture across Africa, and to celebrate the independence of a continent. Performances will take place at State House and Mulungushi International Recipe: Mutafela Shiwa’s finkubala stew Mutafela Shiwa, from Mfuwe, reveals his recipe for a traditional Zambian dish. Finkubala, or mopane worm, is the caterpillar of the emperor moth (Imbrasia belina). To make a delicious stew for two, you will need: n one cup of mopane worms (dried) n one large onion n two cloves of garlic n one green pepper n cooking oil n two teaspoons curry powder n seasoning to taste Wash the dried mopane worms and soak them for few minutes. Fry the garlic and green pepper in oil, and add the drained worms. Season and fry until crisp golden brown. Add the curry powder and stir-fry for a further five minutes. Serve with rice or nshima (maize porridge). JAKE DA MOTTA The Big Picture(SLCS), whose generous sponsors ...have helped provide three classrooms, two teachers’ houses and four teachers. Today 170 local children attend the school. In painting and planning the mural, pupils learned about conservation issues in their area, from human/animal conflict Conference Centre (25 May) and Lusaka Agricultural Showgrounds (26 May). The Freedom Dance Festival was first held in 2006, when it brought together an ensemble of African culture and dance from 15 countries. This year the event’s profile has risen and approximately 20 countries will be competing. These are (subject to confirmation) Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, DRC, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mali, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Reunion, South Africa, Swaziland, Sudan, Senegal, Tanzania, USA, Zimbabwe and – of course – Zambia. Among many sponsors, Celtel Africa, Total Zambia, Destination Lusaka, the Zambian National Freedom Dance Festivalto snaring and tree felling. Today the mural provides a useful teaching aid in a place where resources are few. “Now we like animals, even elephants, but we don’t like poachers!” said Moses Zulu, aged 12. Find out more about SLCS and how you can help at www.slcs-zambia.org MIKE UNWIN MIKE UNWIN AFD FESTIVAL AFD FESTIVALTourist Board, the European Union and the Irish Embassy have all pledged support and logistical assistance. Renowned Zambian artist, Mr V. Makashi, painted the original artwork for the festival. His design, which captures the dynamic colour and movement of Africa, will appear on posters, T-shirts, brochures and billboards. 16 Travel Zambia May 2007