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The Worlds Most Important Rewilding Project

Right now, in a remote corner of Zimbabwe, one of the most important wildlife projects in history is quietly taking place. The project is called 'Rewild Zambezi' and is the vision of world-renowned conservationist and National Geographic explorers-in-residence Beverly & Dereck Joubert.

Rewild Zambezi's' goal is both simple and highly complex: return a damaged piece of African land stripped of its wildlife back to its former glory as a pristine haven for wildlife. To achieve this grand mission of ecological restoration, the project team are translocating 3,000 animals, including 400 elephants and iconic species like lions, buffalo, impala, zebras, painted dogs, and eland. The animals are coming from an overpopulated reserve in Southern Africa to the Sapi Reserve, a 290,000-acre concession bordering Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe. The Sapi Reserve is one of Africa's most important wilderness areas, and together with Mana Pools National Park, it is capable of providing a scenic safe hold for many threatened African species.

Before the Jouberts took ownership in 2016, Sapi operated as a hunting reserve from 1957 and the land and wildlife were left scarred and scattered by this. Once the Jourberts had ownership, they immediately stopped all hunting, built a safari lodge called Tembo Plains, and started plans for this most ambitious rewilding effort.

Along with the re-introduction of wildlife, the project is implementing additional anti-poaching training to secure the area, training new female lead ranger units and conducting surveys and scientific research in association with the University of Washington and a team of local Zimbabwean students.

Through this process, the Jouberts hope to highlight the power of large-scale conservation projects that demonstrate that nature given a chance, can heal itself. "We strongly believe that with wildlife in decline across the globe, we need to do what we can to protect and enhance biodiversity." - Dereck Joubert.

Moving 3,000 animals for Project Rewild Zambezi

Guest wanting to experience the magic of the Sapi Reserve and its prime position on the banks of the Zambezi River can explore it with a stay at Tembo Plains. An incredible luxury lodge built on the banks of the Zambezi River.


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