Here at Love Nature we’re dedicated to documenting the vast array of life that inhabits our planet, delivering the most intimate and unique animal stories from around the globe straight to your living room. Now, with the help of UK based Plimsoll Productions, we’re setting up Camp Zambia, looking to capture even more spectacular and awe-inspiring moments by monitoring resident wildlife 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—for the next 2 years.

Filming a sleepy lion
Photo credit: Camp Zambia. Husband and wife team ‘The Steenkamps’ film a sleeping lion.

Home to some of the most abundant numbers of Africa’s iconic species like hippos, elephants, giraffes and lions, Zambia is also one of the most habitat diverse countries on the continent. Lead by Dr. Martha Holmes, a world renowned natural history production expert who’s lived in Africa for years, and her hand-selected team of videographers, ultra high definition camera operations, wildlife production experts and story producers, the Love Nature team will be working from a central Luangwa base near the end of the Great Rift Valley.

Filming in South Luangwa
Photo credit: Camp Zambia. View of the Milky Way from the film crews remote camp in South Luangwa National Park.

Luangwa has long been cited as one of the last great remaining unaltered rivers in Africa, making it the ideal setting. The team’s travels will be largely dictated by the season—essentially wet or dry—and the species they’re tracking. For example, the epic migrations of both zebra and wildebeest will lead them to the Liuwa Plains.

During this two-year period the team aims to produce 50 hours of 4K programming, ranging from character driven stories following individual animals, packs or herds to profiles explaining the range of new technology being used by conservationists and solutions being implemented.

Hippo fight
Photo credit: Camp Zambia. Two male hippos fighting to exert their dominance. Yawning is used as a threat display – they use their incisors to block attacks and large canines to inflict injuries.

In 2016, the team will send their first 20 hours of viewing-ready footage home, focusing on the region’s great Savannah and river predators, including a super clan of hyenas, the camp’s resident lion pride, and incredible day and night glimpses of leopards. They’ll also help expose the secrets of various heavyweight species like giraffe, buffalo, and hippos, plus visit elephant and monkey orphans being raised in regional facilities. The impacts of 2015’s El Nino droughts will also be explored.

In 2017 the team will send home the remaining 30 hours of programming, diving into even more intricate, in-depth and seasonal dependent coverage of the camp’s residents. Several camp animals will be tracked through four major life stages: birth, maturation, breeding and old age. The extremes between the wet and dry seasons will also take centre focus.

Photo credit: Camp Africa. The heat is too much for these sleepy lions who prefer to hunt under the cover of darkness.
Photo credit: Camp Zambia. The heat is too much for these sleepy lions who prefer to hunt under the cover of darkness.

There’s a while yet to wait before we can all sit back and enjoy the fruits of Camp Zambia, but until then we’ll all be rooting for the Love Nature team. Kudos to the crew of 50 working in one of the most pristine, but also most remote remaining outposts of the world to bring us more priceless moments and animal insight from the real African wilderness.

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