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Month: November 2015

Rain in Hwange

Rain in Hwange

  Hwange Mid-November 2015   We arrived to sweltering, sticky heat, and a hot, stifling wind. Clouds built up throughout the day with the magnificent promise of rain in sunsets streaked with glorious colour. But morning revealed clear, blue, cruelly cloudless skies. Huge numbers of elephants arrived in waves to suck up precious water in the pans, many of which contained pools of dark, undrinkable, liquid mud. There was fierce competition round the pipe yielding fresh, cool water from deep…

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Cyanide – the facts

Cyanide – the facts

Cyanide is a rapidly acting, potentially deadly chemical. It exists in various forms such as hydrogen cyanide (HCN) which is a colourless gas, or as crystals such as sodium cyanide (NaCN) or potassium cyanide (KCN). Cyanide is sometimes described as having a “bitter almond” smell when mixed with liquid, although not everyone can detect this odour. Cyanide is readily absorbed by inhalation, ingestion or skin contact. The cyanide compound used to poison elephants is sodium cyanide, a powder that is…

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