Tuesday, 23 March 2010

The Pittsburgh Falcons have laid their eggs!

For those of you who are devoted followers of Pittsburgh’s peregrine families led by Louie and Tasha2 at the Gulf Tower and Dorothy and E2 at the Cathedral of Learning in Oakland, this year you will be given an even more intimate view of the birds as they hatch and raise their young.
On March 17th Tasha2, the female peregrine at the Gulf Tower nest laid her first egg.
Dorothy the female peregrine falcon at The Cathedral of Learning nest laid her first a week before and has since laid two more making a total of three.
Chicks will hatch about 30 days after the eggs are laid," says Dr. Todd Katzner, Director of Conservation and Field Research at the National Aviary. "Three to four weeks after hatching, the chicks will be banded by the Pennsylvania Game Commission and given a full medical exam.
On March 20th the cameras at the Gulf Tower Nest, PA caught some LIVE peregrine falcon courtship. It is very interesting and you can watch it here:
Live video streams via cameras installed at nests in both locations will this year provide sharper, and more focused views of the birds. The cameras were installed by PixController and the images and sounds they collect are streamed by WildEarth.tv to the National Aviary web site, providing real-time web tv images accessible world-wide. FalconCam footage at both sites can be accessed via the National Aviary web site: www.aviary.org/falcon or here on www.wildearth.tv.
Come and get to know the birds, it promises to be a real time peregrine soap opera.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

News from safari.tv

Well the new crew has been in camp since the beginning of March and slowly things are beginning to settle down. There have been many teething problems and they are all working very hard to iron them out and bring you the safaris that we all love so much.

Tomorrow morning the drive times will be changing. With the seasons changing, the days getting shorter and Djuma taking the lead that time has come. AM drives will start at 06H00, PM drives start at 15H30 and Night drives / FSCs at 19H00.
The waterhole has been buzzing with large amounts of game. From Nyala, Impala herds, and Warthog families to Elephant herds and the seemingly resident Buffalo. Hippos have been mating and there is a brand new baby which appeared a few days ago, which has been very exciting. They are still trying to decide on a name and suggestions are welcome.

The last couple of days have also been a hive of activity with all sorts of sightings on the drives. They found the Nkuhuma Lionesses on a Kudu kill where they stayed for a day feeding. The Nkuhumas have stayed in the area since then so the lion viewing has been fantastic and a nice addition to the other stuff over the last few days.

There has also been some great viewing of White Rhinos and Buffalo and recently some hyena activity around the dam with whooping at night being picked up on the waterhole cam. Luckily no one is presently sleeping in the room next to the FCC! There have actually been lots of Hyena around during the day recently and some people think that there might be a new den site being set up somewhere by these individuals.

On Wednesday the weather was much hotter than previous days and on the morning drive with Kathryn and Jared they had an amazing sighting of Karula and her 2 boys. They were truly excited to meet our resident leopard family and are looking forward to getting to know them like the rest of us have over the years.

Last night Herman and Patrick sat around the fire for a Fireside Chat to talk about some Shangaan traditions and cooking etc and made some pap and sauce on the fire which we have heard was very tasty to sample afterwards.

Finally, Alex and Caroline drove through to Johannesburg to collect the new Sony Camera and edit suite on Tuesday which is now up and running. We are all very excited about the upgrade and hope to bring a much better quality picture to you very soon.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Minnesota Bound Eagle Nest

The Minnesota Bound Bald Eagle nest is located in central Minnesota, USA, less than 30 yards from the flowing waters of the Crow River. Our pair is in their 3rd year at this nesting site. This nest is relatively young by Bald Eagle terms and is roughly 3 x 3 ft, made out of twigs, brush and other eagle friendly bedding.
Working through the harsh Minnesota winter, the eagles start rebuilding their nest in early February, preparing to lay their eggs in March. We anticipate from 1 to 4 eggs, but 2 is fairly typical. Incubation typically takes about 35 days and once the chicks are born, you will see every aspect of raising the young and a close-up view into bald eagle parenting.
Minnesota Bound is a popular Minnesota based television show that has now been on the air for 16 years. They highlight anything and everything to do with the Midwest outdoor lifestyle. Hosted by Ron Schara and his love able black lab Raven, these two have shared thousands of stories. From unique animals to incredible characters, they’ve covered nearly everything. They’ve had an interest in web cams for the past 4 years and their most popular one thus far has been the live loon cam. They really enjoy bringing nature to everyone, LIVE. Their dream is to continue growing the amount of camera’s they have placed and to give several great experiences throughout the entire year.
Ron Schara Productions is a production suite based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. They currently produce 9 television shows locally, regionally and nationally. They have won many awards and they pride themselves on being the leader in outdoor variety television.
To give you the ultimate learning experience, they have teamed up with the Bald Eagle experts from the National Eagle Center, from Wabasha, MN, to give detailed updates and daily blogs. You can ask them questions or just learn from the world’s authority on Bald Eagles.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

the winds of change are blowing ...

Firstly I must apologise that I have not written to you all like this in a while. It is not that I have not wanted to, but rather that I have been super busy working on the next steps in our journey to bring you our WildEarth LIVE ... which as you know is in my (and our) nature.
Anyway, I wanted to take the time to explain what is happening at WE, both from a corporate perspective and from the perspective of certain individuals.
Firstly, I ask that you work with us as WE change and grow. In the past few days I have received some very disturbing mails, and heard about comments, from people that I would have thought would have had more trust and faith in WE. I personally ask you all to remember that a number of new people have joined us. At the same time a new company has been formed ... safari.tv ... a new leader has stepped into the breach, and all of this will bring change. This will be good, but there will be rocky moments along the way. I ask that you do not stand on the side lines and throw insults and say: "Oh, this is not how it used to be done", but rather role up your sleeves, get involved and remember that this has never been about you and us ... it has always been about WE. 
And WE need you now. WE need you to support the new crew, the new leaders and the new ideas that will be born of this era. There will be mistakes, and no doubt they will grate, but I ask that you rise above the frustration and not judge, but help. That you do not forget that WE are a family, and these are new members and they should be WElcomed correctly. I trust that I can count on you to help our new members feel WElcome and to help them appreciate, in a positive way, who WE are.
From the people perspective, Rex and Siphiwe are still 100% a part of WE! I know that you have been worried about this, and I would be too. 
Siphiwe is coming back to work towards the end of March and will be 'zooming' the waterhole camera between safaris as per normal. Her daughter is soooo beautiful and growing like a weed. I am sure that you will see her (and her mom) in the new Final Control later this month.
Rexon, on the other hand, you will not see much of. He has become a 'big man' in his village of Dixie. In fact he has changed the course of history in South Africa. Our very own Rexon through his tireless work on behalf of his community has influenced the constitution of South Africa to respect the property rights of the down trodden. 
A ruling has been passed down that the land is for the benefit of all, and cannot be controlled by the traditional leaders to the detriment of the individuals. In addition, Rexon has been a key player in the group who won a landmark case in the land claims court in favor of the Dixie community over the Manyaleti Reserve, to the north of the Sabi Sands.
As I write this mail, Rex is leading a delegation of 15 elders in Johannesburg where he is trying to get the constitutional court to pass the power to 'control' this land from the tradiotnal leadership to the people. This is a very important and groundbreaking development in the history of the people of South Africa.
Amandla!! (Power to the people)
So to cut a long story short, Rex is moving to a higher plain. His calling will be to empower his people, and WE will support him 100%! He may show up on our channel from time to time, and he will certainly be behind the scenes. Whenever you see an increase in our traversing area, or read of rural people being empowered to control their own destiny, there you will feel Rex's hand. He is still an employee of WE, and is working with me on some very exciting developments that cannot yet be shared, but I assure you involve more and more of what you love ... LIVE wildlife.
He has been my friend for the past 10 years. He has been there through some difficult and 'weird' times, when friends were few and times were tough. He will remain a part of WE until he needs to fly free to change the world. 
Written by Graham Wallington

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Changes in WE

As WE move from the heat of summer into the beauty of Autumn, WildEarth is also changing. Some of you will have watched the Fire Side Chat on Sunday night in which Graham announced a whole lot of things that are going on and also introduced you to a bunch of new people. For those of you who missed it, check it out on our archives.

Will Fox will be taking over the day to day management of the Safari side of our business at Djuma, as a partner in the new Safari.tv LIVE production company. He will run the daily safaris, manage the crew and make sure that you get the best immersive safari experience that anyone can offer. His wife Carol will be behind the scenes running the unpleasant yet nonetheless crucial stuff such as finances and scheduling.

We have five new staff members, four who have already started. Kathryn and Jared are a couple who have had a huge amount of bush experience but also carry some great creative skill. Both are fantastic at camera and Jared is a seriously experienced guide. Together they will take the bush by storm and will be the next wildlife film couple to hit the industry.

Caroline Samules is a TV expert with many many years of producing experience in the LIVE space. She will keep the team together and make sure that once again you get the best African adventure out there.

Alexander Voz is an IT specialist with a flair for editing. He will be creating non live highlights for you and never again will you not able to catch up on what has happened in the last 24 hours.

Finally Tara Pirie will be joining us on 12th March. She will also be presenting and her knowledge and enthusiasm is second to none. She will be a fantastic addition and a real honour to finally have a girl presenting on WE!!

Kathryn will be writing a regular blog on
blog.safari.tv so don't miss it. I will still update you here as to what is going on over there at safari.tv, as well as with all the other WE producers, but if you want regular updates then go there.