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Get In Touch

Email: support@total.com
Phone: 1-800-Total-Theme
Address: Las Vegas, Nevada

Our Location

1-612-432-4473 info@selecttreks.com

Project Description

This project is based in the world famous Greater Kruger Area – famous for its beautiful scenery and diverse wildlife. The region is renowned for its efforts to protect wildlife and to preserve their natural habitats.

Predators need large territories to survive. Expanding habitat loss due to a growing human population and the subsequent expansion of agriculture, roads and houses means that there is increased conflict between humans and wildlife.

The focus of this project is to carry out vital surveys on predators like Leopards, Lions, Wild Dogs and Hyenas in both protected and non-protected areas. There simply is not enough information available on these iconic declining species. This vital data is needed as accurate population figures, potential risks and an understanding of the predator’s behavior, diet and activity can help with preservation efforts. With the new in-depth knowledge gained through data collected by volunteers, more informed management and protection strategies can be developed and implemented.

Location Highlights

Situated in the heart of South Africa’s famous Big 5 Greater Kruger Area, we are surrounded by a number of world-renowned game reserves. The focal point of this area is, of course, the Kruger National Park, which is just 45 minutes from the lodge.

The nearest town is Hoedspruit, a 30-minute drive from our lodge. We have an optional weekly trip into town on Fridays. This will give you the chance to visit supermarkets and souvenir shops or simply spend some time relaxing with a cup of coffee or an ice-cream.

How We Make An Impact

Leopard

The leopard is the most widespread and adaptable big cat, but it is also one of the most persecuted. Information on population densities is very limited and the risks facing them are relatively unknown. These graceful animals are now classed as near threatened. With your help, our aim is to understand the relationships between the leopard populations and the local communities. By reducing the human-animal conflict, we can help ensure a sustainable future for South Africa’s leopards.

Lion

Arguably Africa’s most iconic big cat, these majestic animals are disappearing at an alarming rate and are now classed as vulnerable. Together with our partner ALERT (African Lion & Environmental Research Trust), we monitor pride dynamics and social structure in order to assess the viability of releasing captive-bred lions into the wild to establish new prides and bolster existing ones.

African Wild Dogs

The elegant African wild dog is one of the world’s most endangered mammals and it is the second most endangered carnivore in Africa. Hunting and habitat loss means that there are only approximately 6000 left in the wild.  With your help, our aim is to collect location and pack ID data to better understand their territories, pack dynamics and conflict with landowners.

Spotted Hyena

Spotted Hyenas are strong, smart animals that are often misunderstood. These courageous animals are also experiencing a continual population decline. Help us monitor hyena populations so we can better understand their densities, distribution, and behavior.

Jackal (Black Backed And Side Striped)

These cunning omnivores have long been the subject of superstition and although they play a vital role in our ecosystem, they face ever-increasing conflicts with farmers. Help us study these animals and learn about their movements so we can better understand what non-lethal control methods can be used to both safeguard farmers’ livelihoods and the jackals’ future.

Work You'll Be Doing

Research

Join our qualified guides and researchers in search of the Leopard and other predators. Observe the animals in the wild and collect data that feeds into our databases, insuring that vital individual and group records are consistently updated and maintained. Your work will help to identify their movements, behaviours and individual animals in the field, giving us a greater insight into these iconic species, their densities, and their risk factors. All of this information will help mitigate human-wildlife conflict.

Conservation

You will assist with physical conservation work by helping us maintain the ecosystems and key ranges of these predators. Your time will be spent on activities like alien invasive plant control, clearing encroaching bush on game reserves and taking part in essential snare sweeps. This work will help ensure that ecosystems are restored to full health and will help the local wildlife to flourish.

Devil in the Detail

Your help with data processing and analysis will allow us to create reports, ID kits, maps and profiles on the animals we observe. You will learn how to recognize individuals using their fur patterns, scars, and whiskers. The data that you collect contributes to the essential research that we carry out, in conjunction with partner organizations, to ensure the long-term protection of these iconic carnivorous species.

Why You Should Join

  • Follow the clues and identify individual leopards – helping to build a vital database of individual kits
  • Learn the practical methods used in animal research such as camera traps, track measurement, identification databases, and predator social dynamics
  • Understand the issues around human-wildlife conflict mitigation and how this has contributed to our declining predator populations
  • Monitor leopard corridors to better highlight their movements and home ranges
  • Become a night-owl and see nocturnal animals in their environment on night drives
  • Identify individual Hyenas and Wild Dogs to understand group dynamics and behavior
  • Camp out in the bush at our overnight research camp – learning the stars and eating around a bush fire
  • Assist with on-going conservation initiatives such as removing invasive plants and conducting snare sweeps
  • Live in an African lodge surrounded by reserves in the world famous Greater Kruger Area
  • Explore Blyde River Canyon, take in the sights of the Panorama route, go for a hike or put another stamp in your passport by visiting the intriguing land-locked country of Swaziland over your weekends
  • Make friends for life with other International volunteers!

During your time with us, we will get you involved in different and exciting activities:

 

  • Go on the famous Panorama Route, which is a scenic route along Mpumalanga Escarpment with Blyde River Canyon, the third largest canyon in the world
  • Go on an adventure in Blyde River Canyon that includes extreme hiking, a boat trip or microlight flight
  • Go on a day safari with an experienced guide in the famous Kruger National Park, South African’s largest game reserve
  • Enjoy a fantastic day learning about the Shangaan culture, language and history through dance and music
  • Go on an afternoon town trip into Hoedspruit, grab an ice cream, do some souvenir shopping and pick up some yummy snacks for the following week
  • Get an extra stamp in your passport and explore Swaziland, in the wonderful Mlilwane Game reserve filled with numerous animal species and stunning flowers
  • Relax by the pool, watch a movie or challenge your fellow volunteers and staff to a game of touch rugby

Details

Duration:  4 – 12 weeks

Countries: South Africa

Experiences: Volunteering

Ages: 16 and up

Experience Requirements:

  • Genuine love and concern for people and the environment
  • Enthusiasm, and interest in wildlife and the natural environment
  • Good understanding of English
  • You must be in good physical health, as you will be expected to participate in physical activities
  • Ability to work as part of a team, be flexible and cooperative

**Note: Patience and enthusiasm are essential for this project  (a laptop is optional).

Project start: Every other Sunday (see scheduled dates below)

Dates: 28 January  / 25 February / 25 March / 22 April / 20 May / 17 June / 15 July / 12 August / 09 September / 07 October / 04 November / 02 December / 30 December

Price:
2 weeks – $2,272.00
3 weeks – $2,883.00
4 weeks – $3,495.00
5 weeks – $4,107.00
6 weeks – $4,719.00
7 weeks – $5,331.00
8 weeks – $5,943.00
9 weeks – $6,555.00
10 weeks – $7,167.00
11 weeks – $7,779.00
12 weeks – $8,391.00

south africa

A Typical Volunteer Week

Mon AM: Research – Camera Trap Collection and  Game Drive

MIDDAY: Shangaan Lesson followed by  Conservation Club Planning

PM: Research –  Game Drive

Tues AM: Research –  Bush tracking walk

MIDDAY: Project Work – Predator Data collation

PM: Community -Conservation Club

Wed AM: Conservation – Invasive plant removal

PM: Research – Predator /Data Collection, Research –  Night Drive/Overnight Camping

Thu AM: Research – Predator Research/Data Collection

PM: Project Work – Creating ID Kits / Identifying carnivores, African Sundowners

Fri AM: Research –  Research –  Game Drive

MIDDAY: Trophic Cascades Presentation followed by Project Work -Photo Databases

PM: Optional Town Trip, Braai Night

Sat – Sun Weekend Trips – Optional

Please contact us if you have any questions!

Accommodations

During your volunteering, you will stay at our base within the Greater Kruger Area, Dumela Lodge, a spacious thatched lodge boasting a large swimming pool and situated on 18 hectares of land.

This beautiful landscape serves as home to impala, bush pig, nyala and a great diversity of birdlife. Here, you will dine, relax and socialize.  We don’t know of a better place to sit around a campfire and admire the stars.

 

Dumela means “hello” in Northern Sotho (pronounced “sootoo”). The lodge is situated on an 18-hectare private reserve and surrounded by wilderness and private game reserves. It is home to Vervet Monkeys, Impala, Warthog, Bush Buck, Nyla, the occasional leopard and numerous birds to name but a few.

Situated in the heart of South Africa’s famous Big 5 Greater Kruger Area, we are surrounded by game reserves including the world-renowned Kruger National Park which is just 45 minutes from the lodge.

The nearest town is Hoedspruit, which is a 30-minute drive from our lodge and a great place to spend some relaxing downtime. We run an optional weekly town trip on Fridays. This will give you the chance to visit supermarkets, souvenir shops or simply spend some time relaxing with a coffee or ice-cream

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  Airport Collection and drop off on arrival and departure

Wi-Fi available for an additional fee, but you will need your own Wi-Fi compatible device. (Approx.: R350 for 2 weeks or R600 for 4 weeks)

Laundry @ R60 per load

All your daily transport to the project sites

3 meals a day (Monday to Friday) from our team of great chefs

A full-time housekeeping service and 24-hour support

Comfortable shared accommodation

A great experience with the opportunity to make new friends!

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED

Items of a personal nature, personal insurances, visas and gratuities

 Gratuity

Optional extra activities, not specified above

Optional Tours and Trips

During your time with us, we will get you involved in different and exciting activities:

  • Explore on the world famous Panorama Route; a scenic route along Mpumalanga Escarpment with spectacular natural attractions such as the Blyde River Canyon, the third largest canyon in the world
  • Go on an adventure in Blyde River Canyon that includes extreme hiking, a boat trip or microlight flight
  • Go on a day safari with an experienced guide in the famous Kruger National Park, South Africa’s premier wildlife destination.
  • Enjoy a fantastic day learning about the Shangaan culture, language and history through dance and music
  • Go on an afternoon town trip in to Hoedspruit, grab an ice cream, do some souvenir shopping and pick up some yummy snacks for the following week
  • Get an extra stamp in your passport and explore Swaziland, in the wonderful Mlilwane Game reserve filled with numerous animal species and stunning flowers
  • Relax by the pool, watch a movie or challenge your fellow volunteers and staff to a game of touch rugby

Below is a selection of some of the tours you can book while on project.

Panorama Route – From R950

With one breathtaking view after another you will meander your way along the mountain tops to Gods Window. Enjoy the sights of the world’s third largest canyon, see the three rondawels, explore African curios markets, admire the circular sculptures of Bourke’s Luck canyon and much more.

Horse Riding– from R950

Go for a magical leisurely ride in the African Bush. This is your chance to experience the African Bush in a unique way and if you’re lucky you’ll have the chance to get up close with plains game. It doesn’t matter if you’re an expert or a novice horse rider, anyone can join in the fun.

Bush walk and tracking adventure – from R2250

Awaken your senses and let our head guide Jason take you on a walk into the bush. Spend the night camping in Klaserie, enjoy an amazing braai cooked by the braai master himself and learn more about the bush from an exciting new perspective.

Swaziland – From R3200

As small as it is land locked, Swaziland is an exciting destination to visit. Swaziland makes up for its size with its diverse range of attractions and spectacular mountain landscapes. Spend your weekend in a plains game reserve, go on a hike, a horse ride or a guided mountain bike trail.

Kloofing/Extreme hiking – From – R750

Explore the Blyde River Canyon on foot and set your pulse racing with this unique form of hiking. It’s time to get the adrenaline pumping and is ideal for the adventurous. Hike your way down a small gorge and jump into deep crystal clear spring water.

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