So what does Life on the Project actually involve? See below for an idea of what to expect on a day to day basis… Before getting fully involved in the inner workings of our research, you will undergo training that will cover how to carry out extensive radio tracking and monitoring of all the collared predators on the reserve, all while learning a variety of new skills, including mammal and bird identification, ecology and bush first aid. This training will allow you to effectively contribute to the overall program, as you get to know animals on the reserve individually and following their progress and monitor behaviour. A typical day involves spending time out in the reserve tracking the wildlife and conducting research from the game vehicles. This usually happens during the cooler weather at dawn and dusk when the wildlife is more active. Most of the research is on predators such as lions, leopards, cheetahs and hyena but we also monitor other wildlife, including elephants. There is a daily schedule and if not assisting on game drives then you may be working on data entry or helping with camp and cooking duties. We can spend up to 12 hours a day collecting data, so you should expect some long days. All this will do is develop a baseline and holistic understanding of all aspects of the bush. Another aspect is our community work, where you will be expected to participate in educational days with local communities, highlighting the importance of conservation.
You will have opportunities to enjoy the surrounding areas and activities, including visits to local reptile parks and animal sanctuaries, as well as mountain trails.
Camp is basic but comfortable, the old fashioned African way. Situated deep within the game reserves, you will be in dormitory-style sleeping arrangements, with shared bathrooms, a kitchen and outdoor social areas.
Witness nature in its simplest form, from watching a lion take down its prey or newborn cheetah cubs playing, to a stand-off between two elephants. In the African bush you can never tell what you will find just around the corner…
Travel to the home of the Big Five in the South African bush and volunteer alongside an international team to collect vital behavioral data on reintroduced predators and large herbivores on a private game reserve. In order to assist with this vital conservation work you will be trained to use research equipment to help locate predators in the reserve and you will receive invaluable training in large animal identification, tracking and behavioral study skills.
No special skills or qualifications are required to join this program, as all training will be provided by fully qualified field teams. All we ask is an enthusiasm to learn and become fully involved and immersed in this unique opportunity.
South Africa has such a wealth of fantastic opportunities for further exploration. Hiking through the Limpopo Province, is a great opportunity to explore some of the most beautiful and untouched regions of Africa, while discovering the uncharted beauty of the area.
Visit the Kruger National Park and explore African wildlife in depth, through a variety of Safaris and tours that will bring you one step closer to Africa's Big Five : Elephant, Lion, Rhino, Leopard and Buffalo. Capture these moments of a lifetime and discover a real safari in Africa feels like.
Possibilities include the spectacular Drakensberg Mountains, the beauty of the Kalahari Desert, historic Zululand, the vibrancy of Cape Town, the fantastic Garden Route along the Southern Coast , the world-renowned National Parks of Kruger and Hluhluwe-Imfolozi, and many more highlights that will leave you wanting more of this amazing country.