Name: Michael Schwartz
African Field Experience: Since 2005
Countries: Botswana, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, South Sudan, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Affiliations: National Geographic Society, BBC Wildlife, East African Wild Life Society, SWARA Magazine, Mongabay, Uganda Carnivore Program
Focus: lion, elephant, & rhino conservation, human-wildlife conflict, poverty reduction
Favorite Places: Welgevonden Game Reserve/Murchison Falls National Park
My love of Africa began around 1989 in Schenectady, New York, mostly through National Geographic Magazine and PBS's Nature with George Page. Though a world away, I was thoroughly hooked.
My initial journey was in 2005, first visiting South Africa's Limpopo Province, then spending time in Johannesburg and the township of Soweto. From stepping foot in former President Nelson Mandela's home to watching street musicians and passers-by on a warm, sunny South African Sunday morning, Soweto was where I discovered that my passion for Africa's wildlife was matched by compassion for the African people -- their history, cultures, songs, stories, languages, and love of life.
With a BA in journalism and MA in African Studies, I've since journeyed throughout much of the continent, both as a wildlife conservation researcher and journalist. The goal is to document what is involved in protecting the continent's natural heritage, mostly by listening to the voices of those living alongside Africa's dangerous, truly awesome animals.
Hambani Kahle. Musiibe bulungi.