The freshwater environment has always held a fascination for me, one that has grown from long hours fishing in the diverse South African Lowveld into a passion for discovering the mechanisms that drive the complex interactions in these freshwater environments. I am fortunate to have been born in and experienced the Southern African region. The varied systems from semi-arid pans, to flooding Dambo's have held an intense fascination for me.


My first West African study took me into the familiar Savannah of the Sudanese Ichthyological Province, in Mali, Senegal and northern Ivory Coast. Thereafter I was exposed to  Central African tropical forest, with my introduction to the region immersing me in the Dungu, Kibali and Congo Rivers.


Two of the five English speaking west African regions of Liberia and Sierra Leone are my favourite countries in the Upper Guinea Ichthyological Province to have visited. But not only the fish captured my attention but the ecology held wonder with dragonflies,  pygmy hippos and dense carpets of aquatic moss.


I currently conduct water resource specialist studies to aid in the management of  impacts from  developments. Most recently the silent forest elephants of the Cabinda Province and the ecologically significant peat wetlands of the Upper Casai Drainage have exposed me to unexplored, crystal clear-vegetation rich streams. Still visibly impacted by the last war, with landmine infested roadways which provided a challenge well worth facing for the plenitude of lesser known fauna and flora. I look forward to sharing the Angolan Casai Drainage and rivers of Sierra Leone with you.


Years of experience: 10 Years

Qualifications: MSc Aquatic Ecotoxicology

Countries Visited: Angola, Botswana, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Lesotho, Liberia, Mali, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Republic of Congo, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Swaziland and Zambia

Russel Brian Tate

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