Two Silverbacks ignoring each other in Rwanda

Having seen most everything Africa has to offer by way of wildlife during numerous safaris, De Villiers undertook this trip see why other seasoned safarists are so smitten with these endangered primates.

After visiting with chimpanzees several times in Tanzania before, he was hardly prepared for what turned out to be a life-changing experience. De Villiers will share his experiences and will show a selection of pictures as well as a short video of his encounters.

Safari consultant Les de Villiers grew up in a farming district in the Great Karoo region of South Africa where he learned to appreciate nature. Horse riding, hunting and playing rugby were rites of passage. His hunting days came to an abrupt end in the seventies when he found his trigger finger trembling with a huge kudu bull in the sight. He fired a shot in the air, sold his rifles and bought a good camera. He has been shooting many meters of film before the advent of digital photography and now enjoys the luxury of picking through gigabytes of material gathered during safari trips.

After a diplomatic career that involved negotiations with decision makers and heads of state in Africa, Europe and the United States he moved to New York in the late seventies to become vice-chairman of a management consulting firm and subsequently established his own company. He runs a publishing firm, specializing in Africa books, and a boutique safari operation.

He has a doctorate in economic history and has written more than a dozen books on economics, politics, conservation and travel.

A self-declared safari addict and enthusiastic conservationist, De Villiers travels to wildlife sanctuaries in Africa several times year for his fix while checking out properties. For several years he has been arranging customized safaris for clients in the United States together with a team of carefully selected associates in Africa.

Arranged by Alex Garnett