Mongabay has just released an excerpt from journalist Jeremy Hance's new book, Life is Good: Conservation in an Age of Mass Extinction, in which he discusses the first known footage of a wild African golden cat recently taken in Gabon by Panthera Kaplan scholar and graduate student, Laila Bahaa-el-din. This exclusive footage was taken with cameras set as part of a research project to understand how African golden cats are affected by different levels of human activity, such as logging and hunting, which are prevalent across forested Africa. Very few western scientists have observed the living animal in the wild and almost all records of the African golden cat consist of photographs taken by remote camera traps, or of dead animals (usually killed by local hunters).
Access the full excerpt on Mongabay to read quotes from an interview with Bahaa-el-din on this footage and to learn about the origin of camera traps, how they function today and the critical data they provide which helps Panthera’s scientists and other biologists around the world conserve wildlife. This article is an expanded version of an article that ran on Yale e360 on December 5th, 2011: Camera Traps Emerge as Key Tool in Wildlife Research.
Watch the first known videos of an African golden cat taken by Panthera Kaplan scholar, Laila Bahaa-el-din.
Read a Mongabay interview with Bahaa-el-din – Illuminating Africa’s Most Obscure Cat
Read a Mongabay article on the first known footage of an African golden cat taken by Bahaa-el-din – One of World’s Rarest Cats Caught on Video for the First Time
Learn more about Jeremy Hance’s new book – Life is Good: Conservation in an Age of Mass Extinction