Roger Porter is one of those patient and truly remarkable people with the ability to explain and bring to life the wonders and value of the natural world. With a pair of bushy sideburns and quizzical eyebrows sprouting above his spectacles, he has an avuncular appearance. His knowledge, intellect and understanding of nature enables him to peel away dense layers of complexity and describe natural phenomena in simple terms. Porter, 74, was honoured with a lifetime achievement award for nearly 50 years of dedication to nature conservation at the Excellency Awards ceremony of the Ezemvelo KwaZulu-Natal Wildlife conservation agency.

Working largely behind the scenes as a strategist, conservation planner and later as an independent environmental consultant, he helped to establish four World Heritage Sites in Southern Africa — including the Okavango Delta and the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. He has also played a central role in the creation or expansion of several smaller reserves and ...

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