We are very proud to announce that a review of the long term study of giraffe in the Luangwa by Kuyenda's very own Phil Berry has appeared on the BBC's Nature website. As we announced last month Phil recently teamed up with Professor Fred Bercovitch to analyze data on giraffe coat colour that Phil has been collecting for over the past 30 years in the South Luangwa. The findings are published in the Journal of Zoology.
Today a review of the article was published on the BBC's Nature News website, revealing how male giraffes' age can be estimated by looking at the colour of their coats. Phil's 33-year study of male Thornicroft's giraffes in Zambia, confirmed that the familiar pattern of brown blotches grows darker with age. By comparing recorded colour changes, Phil and Fred were able to generate a life-history profile for the animals. They suggest the darkening patches could be associated with changes in testosterone at puberty.
"It's pretty amazing that he's simply written down tons of stuff for over three decades that we are now able to turn into scientific papers," said Prof Bercovitch.
Read the BBC review here and the full scientific paper can be downloaded here.
You can join Phil on safari at Kuyenda Bushcamp or this November with the BBC's Jonathan Scott at Mfuwe Lodge.