In a new interactive web documentary, DW invites users to explore and learn about Africa's great savannah, the Serengeti, which has been endangered for over 50 years. Threats to the wilderness area are greater than ever.
"Serengeti - Toward an Uncertain Future," a new highlight in DW's multimedia climate series Global Ideas, presents stories of the Serengeti from the rangers and wildlife experts who devote their lives to the region, which covers more than 30,000 square kilometres in northern Tanzania.
DW Reporter Inga Sieg, cameraman Axel Warnstedt and sound technician Moritz Polomski spent two weeks in Tanzania in May. They collected audio and visual material from the air and at eye-level with the Serengeti's inhabitants and wild animals.
Users can explore the Serengeti by clicking through interactive galleries of scenes captured by DW's team, such as the great annual wildebeest migration and glimpses into the life of lions.
"Our web documentary draws on multiple media, and is targeted in particular at young, internet-savvy people. The Serengeti documentary is composed of three topic areas: The World of Wild Animals; Hard Times for the Savanna; and Serengeti Shall Not Die. Each of the 17 videos tells a unique story from Central Africa's savannah," said Inga Sieg.
Half a century ago, Bernhard Grzimek's Oscar-winning 1959 film "The Serengeti Shall Not Die" placed the region for the first time firmly in the global consciousness. Since then, the threats to one of the earth's great wilderness areas have come from all sides. Manuela Kasper-Claridge, head of the Global Ideas project and of DW's business desk, believes the strength of DW's new project lies in letting audiences decide which path to follow, learning about the dangers the Serengeti faces along the way.
"The Serengeti is an internationally recognized symbol for the richness of nature, and it, too, faces the threats posed by climate change. But what makes the Serengeti so special? What are the threats being faced? Who is protecting this national park? The user can select the topics that interest him or her. Many people are already talking about it on Facebook and Twitter," commented Kasper-Claridge.
"Serengeti - Toward an Uncertain Future," produced in close cooperation with the Frankfurt Zoological Society (ZGF), joins the award-winning web documentary "Namati's World - The dreams and fears of a young coral in the South Pacific" as part of the Global Ideas series, which presents projects geared towards sustainable climate protection and species conservation in developing and transition countries. The series, sponsored by Germany's Federal Environment Ministry, within the framework of the International Climate Change Initiative, is one of the most comprehensive websites reporting on such a wide range of topics related to climate change.