Migrations

Big Sky Journal

April 26, 2011

Dearest Big Sky Journal:

Imagine 1.3 million antelope together across a country. Now imagine if that same group of antelope could provide a country with wealth, food and water.

It’s not hard to imagine the government of South Sudan mismanaging the second largest wildlife migration in the world, but it’s something not to be ignored.

The population was caught in the crossfire of the Second Sudanese Civil War (from 1983-2005), but conservationists estimate that most of the animals are still around, leaving their management in the hands of the new country.

The government in 2006 said it would do what it could to protect its wildlife, but that is yet to be seen. When the country splits on July 1, 2011, future management of wildlife will be left up to the Government of South Sudan.

The Wildlife Conservation Society has said it would like to work with the GOSS to establish wildlife areas that would benefit the country through tourism dollars. I’d like to follow their efforts to work with the South Sudan government and write a 1,500-word feature on the latest.

As a freelance journalist, I’ve covered news for a regional weekly in southwestern Montana, the Big Sky Weekly, lacrosse for MCLA magazine and sports for the Montana Kaimin. I supplemented studies at The University of Montana School of Journalism with creative writing and media arts courses and know how to use a pen and camera. I now wish to take my talents into the African continent, which has in large part lacked in news coverage.

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