30th Anniversay Season: Episode 1 : 26 August 2013

50|50 Celebrating  30 Years

Wild dogs

In the 30 years that 50|50 has been on the air, the way researchers work has changed considerably. To document wild dog behaviour and population statistics, researchers used to have to rely on newspaper surveys or museum records. Nowadays, cutting edge technology and social media has changed things considerably. With only 130 wild dogs remaining in the Kruger National Park, these rare predators are facing a crisis in South Africa. Bonné joins wild dog researcher Grant Beverley to see if they can determine the cause of the wild dog population decline in Kruger by learning more about the pack dynamics and movements of these highly social animals. To track down the wild dog pack, they must employ the help of the thousand visitors Kruger receives per day. Buzzing social media, adventurous river-crossings and a team of well equipped vets taking samples and attaching GPS collars to darted dogs, makes for an exciting wildlife expedition worthy of the opening night of 50|50’s 30th annniversay season…and as usual, there are a few surprises in store too!

Wild Talk Festival

The Wild Talk Africa film festival held in Durban this year attracted the who’s who of the local and international wildlife film making industry. The festival promotes the wildlife filmmaking industry within South Africa and facilitates interaction between local and international filmmakers and crafts people. Seminars and master classes were held such as “Wildlife Presenting” hosted by our very own Bonné. The festival included the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition at Ushaka Marine World where spectacular wildlife moments were captured in still-life. This exhibition includes one hundred of the world’s most amazing wildlife photographs from seventy seven of the top photographers in the world. Africa is the epicentre of award-winning wildlife films and is therefore a more than appropriate place to hold the ROSCAR awards (Rhino Oscars) ceremony to reward worthy willdife films and talent.

Rhino DNA

The total number of poached rhino since January 2013 has reached the 600 mark. With this dramatic assault on the South African rhino population – part of our national heritage – what are Government doing to help? Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and Minister of Environmental Affairs, Edna Molewa stepped out in support of efforts being made in the Eastern Cape by joining SAB and game rangers in the Shamwari Nature Reserve as they darted a female rhino to extract DNA samples for South Africa’s growing DNA database. This project helps to convict poachers in court by linking their poached horns to rhino carcasses.

Veldfokus

To celebrate 30 years of collaboration with our viewers, we focus on cooperation in the animal world. A buffalo herd rescues a drowning calf, wild dogs practice team work and fun times are shared in a baby elephant pile-on!

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