The Pink Pimpernel

Who is the Pink Pimpernel? Is the Pink Pimpernel an anti-hero? We may never have satisfactory answers to these pertinent questions but let's set some of the fundamental issues straight. Unpacking the Kamfers Dam debacle requires a gambol back in time [flamingo chicks don't gamble, sir - people do, for fame & fortune, & with other people's money, usually] and although the devil resides, stoically, in the detail, most, if not all of what follows here, is freely available everywhere. What we don't ...

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Birdlife South Africa: by-catch

For a small, annual sum, members of Birdlife South Africa enjoy a meaningful contribution to an organisation giving wings to birds - the NGO positioned at the polished end of the National Conservation Spear.  Birdlife's successes are legion - none more important than their contribution, via the ATF (Albatross Task Force), to the Global Seabird Program - the catch-all, in this context, for 'finding innovative and win-win solutions to seabird by-catch' [i.e. - in the fisheries]; and by 'winner-winner, chicken-dinner' ...

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Marion Island – the ugly truth

Imagination is the genesis of creativity - an original idea with value. "The path to least resistance leads to crooked rivers & crooked men" [Henry David Thoreau] I picked up a copy of Peter Ryan's 'Guide to SEABIRDS of Southern Africa' & was struck by the recurring theme - '... high chick mortality due to mouse predation.' That tends to get annoying. Appended nearer the front of the publication are some harrowing pictures of ...

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Who is South Africa’s best birder?

Some of us venture into unchartered country and forego peace & quiet until the geography's mapped. We go where angels fear to tread... At a recent twitch for rare birds; & in the company of lunatics, an inappropriate utterance clattered across the crumbling Bridge of Decency & resonated on the souls of all who heard it. I've been on it, ever since. Here it is: Who is South Africa's best birder? There ...

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