Tracks of Giants

Tracks of Giants

This trans-Africa expedition occurred in 2012 and continues in 2014 through follow-up activities of compiling data, developing communications and publishing tools, and public presentations in Africa and Europe.

Following ancient African elephant migration paths, Tracks of Giants, was a 5 month west-to-east journey that connected major conservation nodes to promote a greater awareness of conservation, human community and leadership issues specifically relevant to southern Africa. The journey aimed to rekindle the rapidly declining indigenous knowledge base of the human – animal interface, and indigenous solutions to conservation challenges and issues.

A team of trackers, conservationists and media traveled by foot, bicycle (in regions outside of conservation areas and wildlife parks) and kayak in the Okavango Delta and Zambezi through eight major conservation nodes.   Along the way, they met with local communities, worked with partners, surveyed and documented animal movements and conservation issues focusing on the following issues:

  • Climate change: potential impact on biodiversity and natural habitats
  • Water: The vital role of wild natural areas in supplying water to human communities
  • Human – animal issues: identification of conflict areas and possible solutions
  • Habitat fragmentation and loss of traditional animal migration routes
  • The importance of designated wilderness regions in Transfrontier Conservation Areas
  • Preserving indigenous wildlife knowledge – tracking skills, resource use, oral history
  • Linking environmental issues to leadership issues- biological, social, psychological