African Parks have been responsible for transforming Malawi’s wildlife in recent years, helping it to emerge as one of Africa’s most complete destinations as the quality of its safaris develops to match the cultural, scenic and adventure experiences already well established. With new initiatives and projects continuing to be announced through 2018, their commitment to Malawi shows no signs of letting up!
Last year the #500 elephants project into Nkhotakota Wildlife Reserve supported by HRH Prince Harry captured the attention of wildlife enthusiasts and conservationists around the world as the largest elephant translocation in human history. But that wasn’t all that African Parks achieved. Alongside the elephants, over 1000 head of game from other species were also moved into Nkhotakota and cheetah were returned to Malawi for the first time in 20 years in Liwonde National Park.
This year, Liwonde has already seen lions re-introduced and there are plans for more lions there and in Majete, plus giraffe for Majete (none of Malawi’s state parks & reserves are currently home to giraffe.)
The Malawi government has also just expanded African Parks’ management of Liwonde National Park to the adjoining Mangochi Forest Reserve, making it the fourth park in Malawi to come under African Parks’ management. Mangochi Forest Reserve is a 320 km2 adjoining forest and water catchment area. Ecologically linked to Liwonde, Mangochi Forest Reserve is critical to the long-term conservation of the entire landscape and expands African Parks’ management by 60% in this area.
The new Robin Pope Safaris camp, Kuthengo opens in Liwonde this month, Nkhotakota’s Bua River Lodge re-opens after an upgrade and under new ownership next month and there are new lodge concessions being finalised across the African Parks’ management areas.
With all these fantastic developments continuing, it’s a really exciting time to be visiting Malawi and witnessing the great strides being made in conservation and with its wildlife experiences.
Originally published in the Maravi post, www.maravipost.com/african-parks-continue-malawis-wildlife-transformation-through-2018/