Buy No Rhino Part 4 - From rainy Laos back to the coast of Vietnam
After our cycling time-out at the Gibbon Experience some proper ‘Laotian’ fun was awaiting us. The plan was to make our way down from the North of Laos to Vientiane, the capital, then mid way through the country at Savannahket, cut back into Vietnam. Wow, but in between we had to get across what Laos is famous for: steep, high, long mountain passes. For five grueling days we did non-stop climbing! At least the scenery was unforgettable, thick forests and steamy jungle expanses as far as the eye could reach, making it all worthwhile.
Buy No Rhino Part 3 - From the coast into deepest jungle
Crossing from China into Vietnam we soon became aware of a few key cultural differences. The Vietnamese drive more risky, speeding past us with little room to spare – needless to say at times quite unnerving! It also struck us that many were unfriendly, short, rude, even aggressive at times and making us feel welcome was not high on the priority list. We never experienced this in China! This side of the Vietnamese would come and haunt us at a later stage. I will get back to this…
Buy No Rhino - second installment! Kicking off in China
“What, two girls alone?! Cycling through China?” Not quite believing all the negative comments, we set off on our trip optimistic but still expecting the worst. Contrary to all warnings, China topped our expectations and provided us with a super start into our “Buy No Rhino” Cycle Tour.
We (two German-South African sisters from Cape Town) are cycling from Hong Kong to Singapore in a bid to raise awareness about rhino poaching in Southern Africa. 6.000km – 7 months – 7 countries. Ok, one country down so far.
End of April our trip kicked off in Hong Kong, where we had the great opportunity to visit four schools with the Rhino Art Project. Thanks to the engaged, enthusiastic kids for the wonderful time we had with them. From Hong Kong Island we took the ferry over to the colorful, entertaining casino capital Macau and then cycled across the border into China mainland. We were heading west along the coastline towards Vietnam.
Alps End to End Traverse - a 1850km mountaineering journey
On Thursday 11 June, ultra distance runner John Fleetwood will celebrate his 50th year by embarking on a journey on foot from one end of the European Alps to the other - from Slovenia to Monaco, with no mechanical assistance. On this epic of around 1850km he aims to stick to the high ground as much as possible, including - weather permitting - via ferrata link-ups and ascents of some major peaks along the way. John starts his adventure on 11th June and is aiming to arrive in Nice in August ....
Asian Cycling Adventure in Aid of Rhinos kicks off in Hong Kong
We have always wondered if we, as individuals, have the power to positively impact the current rhino crisis. Instead of just following the tragic headlines on the news, we have decided to take action! Our cycling project “Buy No Rhino” was born. We, two sisters, will ride from Hong Kong to Singapore in a bid to raise awareness about rhino poaching.
On April 20th we started our epic 6000km journey, which will take us through seven countries in South East Asia (China, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore). The aim of our awareness campaign is to inform about the rhino plight and transform the mindsets of people we meet.
Nesting Bees - can you help?
One of the fantastic organisations supported by EOCA in 2010 was the Bumblebee Conservation Trust, with a project aimed at supporting and expanding wild flower meadows along the Pembrokeshire coastal path
. They have just issued some guidelines to encourage people to create bumblebee nests in their gardens to help them further.
Top 10 Nature Photography Tips
Now let’s be straight, there are plenty of good books and DVDs out there showing you how to become a better nature photographer. So why are these tips any different? Well rather than being a full-blown banquet of information, they are more of a drop-in buffet bar - tasty snippets of helpful advice in bite-size chunks. I’m no techie-expert but I do have a few years of making lots of mistakes (and hopefully learning from them) under my belt. I hope by passing on some of these nature and wildlife photography tips you might short circuit part of that painful process.
Nature Photography Tips - Dress for Success!
Sometimes your clothes are more important than your camera gear.........
The start of a new series by Photgraphers for Conservation on differing aspects of photographing wildlife and nature - with some topics you will have thought of - and some you won't!
Going Wild in Ennerdale
An update on this 2011 funded project and what a difference EOCA's funding has made to a wild space on the west coast of Cumbria in Northern England.
Forgotten Species - Giant River Otter
First one head comes up from the water, then another…and another!
Living in family groups and hunting for piranhas in the murky waters of rainforest rivers, the giant river otter is the longest members of the Mustelidae family. Following decades of poaching they are now endangered.
Wild Roses Raise Funds for EOCA with their eco T-shirt
As we announced in the summer of 2012, one of our newest members joined EOCA in style by committing to design a T-shirt with proceeds from its retail coming to EOCA. Wild Roses designed a range of brightly coloured T-shirts each with the message 'I'm Cool' on the front and the reasons why on the back - 'because I protect the dragonfly', and 'because I respect the ladybug'.
EOCA Ambassador conquers most difficult route in the Arctic
Freshly back from fulfilling his dream of writing a new page in the history books by discovering new walls and routes in a place of ‘incomparable beauty’, EOCA Ambassador Hansjörg Auger is celebrating after his team not only survived ‘one of the wildest places on earth’, but also put up four new free climbing routes. One of them, ‘The Door’, graded 8b by expeditions members has been officially recognised as the most difficult freeclimb in the Arctic.
Falieres Nutrition support EOCA projects with food parcels!
At OutDoor 2012, Falieres Nutrition approached EOCA with the offer of providing food to some of our projects as a way of supporting EOCA and conservation. Falieres Nutirition make freeze dried breakfasts and other meals for expeditions. They have now very generously sent 200 breakfasts and 50 other meals to Respect the Mountains. Aukje, from Respect the Mountains said 'We are on the road for a minimum of 3-4 weeks during our Envirotrek events which EOCA are kindly sponsoring and so we are delighted to use these meals for our staff and volunteers' A couple of other projects funded by EOCA this year are also now considering using some of these handy meals to energise their volunteers.
Forgotten Species - Arctic Fox
Almost everyone has heard about the problems polar bears are facing because of global warming. However, many other animals are also affected by this phenomenon. One of these, which literally follows in the footprints of the polar bear - is the arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus). This small fox, native to the arctic regions of the northern hemisphere, often eats of the remains of carcasses that the polar bear has left behind.
Forgotten Species - Tapir
Walking around in the lush rainforest of Central America is a fascinating animal that can weigh up to 400 kg. With its long, characteristic nose it grabs leaves to eat of branches. Its closest relatives are horses and rhinoceroses. Although Baird’s Tapir (Tapirus bairdii) is considered endangered, very few people know anything about this remarkable species.
Forgotten Species - Persian Leopard
Tigers and lions often get lots of attention in different types of media. Another felid, much less commonly known, is the beautiful Persian Leopard (Panthera pardus saxicolor). Existing today only in fragmented populations in the mountain areas of Iran, Afghanistan, Georgia, Turkey and Southwest Asia, this subspecies is classified as endangered by the IUCN Red List. Only between 800 and 1200 individuals are believed to still be found in the wild and they are currently declining.
Mountain Wilderness - Project success
Following the 2011 funding round, Mountain Wilderness, a charity based in France, with the aim of protecting habitat, wildlife as well as outdoor enthusiasts in wild, open spaces - through the removal of old instalations (such as ski lifts) and remnants from the second world war has conducted two very successful operations in the Southern Alps this summer,
Emeralds for Elephants - The World Land Trust
The World Land Trust, who last year received conservation grant funding for elephant corridors in India from EOCA have come up with an exquisite way in which to fund conservation. They, together with ethical coloured gemstones mining company, Gemfields, together with Jaguar Land Rover and the Gemological Institute of America (GIA India), have collaborated with ten of India’s top jewellery designers to create a unique ‘pop up’ collection of bespoke Zambian emerald jewellery.
Sunday Bumblebee Day
Come and join funded partner the Bumblebee Conservation Trust as it celebrates the work achieved over the last 18 months following a grant from EOCA.