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The original Selous Game Reserve, in southern Tanzania, was established in 1896, named after the world-famous hunter FC Selous in the 1920s and expanded to measure 50 000 squares kilometers today. There are no people living within its boundaries and it has some of the greatest wildlife concentrations on the continent, including 70 000 elephant, over 120 000 buffalo, more than half a million antelope and a couple of thousand large carnivores roaming freely in its forest, riverine thickets, steppes and mountain ranges.

The Selous has gone through periods of deep crisis when its existence was at stake and the book describes these years, the causes, remedies taken and the necessary conservation policies. Possible future scenarios are spelt out in a thought-provoking way. The contributors to this book share over a century of work in the reserve they also share the believe that the Selous is not only the largest and oldest protected area in Africa but its also one of the finest in the world. They hoped that this book will make the public aware of how important it is to conserve this world Heritage Site.