Africa

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Trophy Hunting Could Actually Help Lions

Only under the right conditions

(Newser) - It may be a tough one for animal lovers to swallow, but a study out of the University of Kent suggests trophy hunting of lions might actually be good for the species. Specifically, researchers say trophy hunting facilitates the maintenance of large areas of lion habitat—but only under certain... More »

We All Come From Single Wave of African Migrants

Humans that populated the world left Africa 50K to 80K years ago

(Newser) - While all modern humans originated in Africa around 200,000 years ago, scientists have long debated on exactly when and how we spread across the globe. A trio of studies published this week posits that, with one tiny exception, all people living today are descended from the same wave of... More »

The Great Elephant Census Returns Jarring News

Census finds numbers fell by a third in just 7 years

(Newser) - A century ago, there were more elephants in Africa than there were people in New York City. Now there are probably more people in Anchorage than elephants in Africa, with the pachyderm population down by a third just between 2007 and 2014, according to the biggest-ever study of elephant populations.... More »

500 Elephants Are Getting Loaded Onto Trucks Via Cranes

The goal: to get them somewhere safer

(Newser) - Half a dozen African elephants lay strewn on a riverside plain in Malawi, immobilized by darts fired from a helicopter in a massive project to move 500 elephants, by truck and crane, to a sanctuary for the threatened species. As development squeezes Africa's wildlife areas, this kind of man-made... More »

Only African Country Not in African Union Wants Back In

Morocco's return depends on AU vote

(Newser) - Morocco left the African Union in 1984 in protest of the organization recognizing Western Sahara's independence, though Morocco viewed the territory as its "southern provinces." Now it wants back in—but it's not about to give up the fight, reports the BBC . "For a long... More »

Zambians Outraged at Woman's Tale of Gap Year in Their Country

They say Louise Linton's book is filled with stereotypes and inaccuracies

(Newser) - Louise Linton is an aspiring actress living in California, but the Scottish woman's recently published book about her gap year in Zambia in the late '90s is what's catching everyone's attention, the Guardian reports. In Congo's Shadow was published in April and excerpted in the... More »

Human Albinos in Malawi Hunted Like 'Animals'

Increase in murders by 'hunters' seeking 'magical' body parts has made situation dire

(Newser) - There are more cases of albinism in sub-Saharan Africa than anywhere else on Earth, per the Washington Post , and in Malawi, a violent sidebar to this phenomenon has emerged over the past year and a half. People there with the hereditary condition —marked by a reduction or faulty distribution... More »

Monkey See, Monkey Fall, Monkey Cause National Blackout

Primate that fell on transformer is lucky to be alive

(Newser) - A "rogue" operative caused a nearly four-hour power outage across Kenya on Tuesday, the BBC reports. That agent of blackout chaos: a monkey that fell onto a transformer of the country's leading electric power-generating company, per the AP . In a statement on its Facebook page , accompanied by a... More »

Mysterious, Abandoned Oil Tanker Washes Up on Beach

No one knows where its crew is

(Newser) - A 210-foot-long oil tanker washed up on the shores of Africa this week; its crew was nowhere to be found. The Guardian reports the abandoned ship, the Tamaya 1, is now the subject of an investigation to find out what happened. The tanker, registered in Panama, was supposed to be... More »

High School Basketball Star Is Probably a 30-Year-Old Man

Sudanese immigrant always seemed much bigger than other boys on his team

(Newser) - No one disputed Jonathon Nicola was a big kid: The 11th-grader at Catholic Central High School in Windsor, Canada, stood 6 feet 9 inches, weighed 202 pounds, and wore a size 16 shoe, the Windsor Star reports. And no one initially disputed the Sudanese immigrant's age of 17—until... More »

Boko Haram Used 44 Kids as Suicide Bombers Last Year

They're brainwashed, sexually abused, and threatened

(Newser) - Boko Haram, the Islamist extremist group terrorizing Nigeria and surrounding countries, is drastically increasing its use of children as suicide bombers, according to a UNICEF report released Tuesday. The Los Angeles Times reports Boko Haram used four children as suicide bombers in 2014. Last year, they used 44—33 of... More »

Calif. Couple Jailed in Africa After Buying Souvenir

They were told the carved giraffe bone was legal

(Newser) - A California couple on safari in Africa bought a souvenir that ended up being far more expensive than they could have imagined. Jon and Linda Grant picked up the souvenir, a 15- to 18-inch giraffe bone onto which a herd of elephants had been carved, at a game reserve in... More »

Attacks in Ivory Coast, Turkey Kill Nearly 50

Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb claims responsibility for one attack

(Newser) - Apparent extremist attacks in the Ivory Coast and Turkey have left nearly 50 people dead. At least six armed men attacked beachgoers outside three hotels Sunday in Grand-Bassam, Ivory Coast, killing at least 14 civilians and two special forces, sending tourists fleeing through the historic Ivory Coast resort town, says... More »

Researchers Stumble on 'Hidden' Lion Population

Study confirms lions live in Ethiopia park, possibly another in Sudan

(Newser) - Conservationists say they have confirmed the existence of lions in a remote national park in Ethiopia, a rare piece of good news for a threatened species whose numbers have plunged in many parts of Africa, the AP reports. Born Free, a charity based in Britain, said in a statement Monday... More »

Safari Raffle Riles Activists for Animal Rights

Bubye Valley Conservancy raffles off a lion hunt

(Newser) - A safari company has upset animal-rights activists by launching a "full lion trophy hunt" raffle —mere months after Cecil the lion's killing attracted worldwide attention, Sky News reports. Tickets for the Bubye Valley Conservancy raffle in Zimbabwe cost $1,500 each , with the winner getting the aforementioned... More »

No More Cecils: African Lions Now on Endangered Species List

And US hunters will need special permit to bring back 'trophies'

(Newser) - Minnesota dentist Walter Palmer caused an uproar when he killed Cecil the lion —and he may have expedited the latest Obama administration mandate. The US Fish and Wildlife Service is set to announce Monday that as of Jan. 22, lions in Africa will be protected under the Endangered Species... More »

Gabon Makes Huge Ivory Bust

Illegal haul was taken from about 20 elephants: government rep

(Newser) - Two Gabonese men—one of whom reportedly worked for the West African country's water and forest department—have been arrested for allegedly poaching, and a government rep tells Reuters that "We can confirm the seizure of around [440 pounds] of ivory, which represents about 20 elephants." That... More »

Ingenious Method Helps Track Elephant Killers

Fake tusk is implanted with GPS device in Africa

(Newser) - A National Geographic reporter looking into the increasing slaughter of elephants in Africa struck upon a great way to track the illegal trade of their ivory tusks: Bryan Christy enlists a world-class taxidermist to create fake tusks embedded with GPS devices. Christy's team then plants them in the black... More »

US Huntress Poses With Her Kills

Sabrina Corgatelli defends the hunting of animals in Africa

(Newser) - A huntress from Idaho has added her two cents to recent stories about Americans accused of hunting illegally in Africa—and attracted her share of outrage in return, the Telegraph reports. On July 25, Sabrina Corgatelli responded to the story of Cecil the lion's death by posting photos on... More »

Obama: 'I Think if I Ran, I Could Win'

But presidents aren't above the law, he tells African leaders

(Newser) - The quote about the 2016 election getting the most attention today comes from a guy who can't even run: "I actually think I'm a pretty good president—I think if I ran, I could win—but I can't." President Obama made the joke while addressing... More »

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