Sunday, May 31, 2009


This last week I saw for the very first time The Search for the Knysna Elephants, a documentary that deals with aspects of my work and findings on the world's most southerly elephants. It was beautifully filmed and directed by my friend Mark van Wijk and tells the remarkable story of these “miracle” elephants. I have just heard this morning that The Search for the Knysna Elephants will premiere on Animal Planet UK on Saturday, 13/06/2009 at 21:00.

Also, last week I was working on photo selection for my new book The Secret Elephants. Going through the various images taken over the past eight years made me wonder how these years of learning about these special elephants have flown by. What a privileged time it has been. The book comes out later this year.

I have a new dog companion and her name is Tuli. Interestingly, I did not name her. She was named by my rhino researcher friend, Jed, and his girlfriend, Jordana, an American elephant researcher based in the Addo Elephant National Park. They found Tuli just days old on the side of a road. They rescued her and raised her to six months before asking whether I would like to take her on as Jed's new research posting unfortunately does not allow for dogs. Tuli is a delight and accompanies me on my rounds as I undertake my remote camera leopard/mammal survey work just beyond the southern boundary of the Garden Route National Park.

Lastly, on a sad note, on Saturday morning, I heard the tragic news that 55 false killer whales had become stranded at Kommetjie's Long Beach, south of Cape Town. People with compassionate hearts flocked to the scene and tried for hours to swim the whales back into the open ocean. Very sadly later that day, 44 of the whales were put down.