Focused African Conservation Effort
African Conservation Volunteer Project - Work in Botswana, Africa

African Conservation Volunteer Project

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Tuli Wilderness Conservation Project Tuli Wilderness Conservation Project
Touch Africa Safaris - Official agent for The Tuli Wilderness Conservation Project

14-Day African Conservation Experience

Based in Southern Botswana, these conservation experience courses offer an in-depth insight into animal behaviour and research monitoring techniques. 

The project leaders are highly-skilled, not only in their specialist fields but also in a variety of other conservation-associated subjects, resulting in a well-rounded educational experience. 

The first few days revolve around an introduction into the behaviour of the animals being monitored and learning how the data sheets are filled in.  This is followed by extensive work in the field, monitoring the animals and documenting all behaviour.  The work will be varied, depending on what is required during the period that you are here.  Some days will be more intense than others, and depending what focus you have chosen some days may start very early and carry on late into the evening. 

Accommodation is in a beautiful tented camp, on the floodplain of the Limpopo River.  The camp is unfenced and it is not uncommon for animals to come right into the camp.  There is electricity and the camp is serviced daily by attendants. 

14-Day Elephant Focus 

The Tuli Block has a population of around 1700 elephants.  This is the largest population to be found on privately-owned land in the world.  During certain periods of the year, up to 250 elephants can be found grouped together in a single herd.  Whilst there is a no-culling policy in this region, there is a considerable amount of conflict between the wildlife and the villages in the area and this can lead to serious mood changes.  Social dynamics amongst the elephants in the individual family units is a key component, and the only way to get to know the individuals is by drawing up detailed identification kits.

Key Components of the Elephant Focus Project

  • Rate of population growth

  • Social structure

  • Movement patterns and determining factors

  • Feeding patterns and behaviour

  • Population and social dynamics - and the determining factors

  • Ecological densities and how these influence the structure and dynamics of the system

  • Incidence of"tusklessness" amongst females

  • Occurrenc of "musth" in bulls and the effect on behaviour

14-Day Predator Focus

The exact state of the predator populations of the Tuli Block is unknown.  There are no accurate figures on numbers of leopards or cheetah, but a healthy population is to be found.  The lion population has diminished to around only 17 known individuals, mainly due to their being shot by both local farmers in Botswana and commercial farmers on the South African side of the border.  Due to the number of lions shot in the preceding two years, information on their movements and social dynamics is of vital importance.  Both Spotted and Brown hyaenas are prevalent, with a greater number of Brown hyaena to be found in the core study area, including a number of active dens.  A pack of wild dogs was reintroduced a few years ago, but their numbers have diminished considerably in the last two years due to snaring by local poachers.  The extent of their range means that they are not often seen, but the pack has fragmented and they do make an appearance once in a while and as much information as can be gained is collected when they are around.

Key Components of the Predator Focus Project

  • Territory and/or range size determination

  • Interactions with other animals

  • Diet

  • Behaviour patterns

  • Sex and age ratios

Dates for 2011:
6 June 20 June
4 July 18 July
1 August 15 August
5 September 19 September
Cost:
Conservation Project - 14 days for R9,435.00

Optional Transfers to and from project R1,800.00 per person each way including accommodation for one night at Pontdrift (min: 4x pax)

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