I have spent the last weeks editing our 2011 photographs and updating the tip pages. Some of the tips are taking a lot of time. For example giving advice on malaria. There are expert sites for this subject, and giving unsound advice would be a terrible mistake. Therefore I spent a great deal of time searching for sites with up to date and clearly explained information. There the traveller can get detailed information about current measures to prevent malaria long before starting their trip to Africa. The aim of our site is to summarise and collate the information, and illustrate it with the products we have chosen to use e.g. permethrin treated clothes, time release DEET lotion. We hope our summary will decrease the time other safari goers will need to understand this important subject, and help clarify their questions before their essential consultations with their general practitioner and travel clinic. The South African Parks Board forum has excellent information forums. It has an ongoing discussion on malaria prevention. But this particular topic has not been updated since 2008. It has an overload of anecdotal advice from well-meaning contributors. Wading through 81 pages to get essential advice is not what a traveller needs. Hopefully experts will update the advice in the near future. I will then add it to the list of presently recommended sites on my travel tips page.
But in these two weeks I have also spent a lot of time thinking about the purpose of my blog. I do not indulge in Facebook or Twitter and I must admit the idea of having a page to express my weird ideas is appealing. However I would like it to be than just self therapy for an old age adventurer!
The ideas for this blog are still evolving, but probably the best would be for me to use knowledge of human biology and adaptation to interpret interesting but sometimes difficult general biological questions. I will search for current and old topics on biology and see if I am able to explain them clearly for the general reader. At the moment I am writing a photography tip about the effects of photographic flash on animals eyes. This has lead me down a new path. The evolution of light receptors in invertebrates and vertebrates, and the conservation of rhodopsin as the visual pigment in all these species is a fascinating story. This is too much for the photography tips page, and I hope some readers will find it interesting reading if I briefly elaborate on it on this blog. It will take time for me to understand it and explain it simply. So hold on a few days!
But a tit-bit for now. I was amazed today to find my adventure on the genetics of visual pigments leading me to a music site. Two scientists have composed music based on genetic and amino acid patterns! Listen to it on internet! Enjoy!