Our African Predator & Cat project is an informative and fun educational program. It consists of learning through wildlife volunteering along the Garden Route of South Africa. The program is founded on outcome-based learning objectives with innovative approaches to help understand predator strategies, behaviours and apply animal management care, husbandry and welfare strategies, procedures and protocols.
- Learn about wildlife & predator conservation in South Africa
- Get involved with regional wildlife conservation projects and research initiatives
- Learn about the perpetual threats to ecosystems and the environment
- Create long lasting memories and friendships with people from all over the world
Arrival day: Sunday
Project starts: Monday
Location: along the Garden Route of South Africa, the core area between Mossel Bay and Addo
Duration: 4 weeks. However a 2-week option is available comprising the first 2 weeks of the 4-week program
- Basic level of competency in English
- Copy of return flight itinerary
- Availability of position
- Medium level of fitness
Average working day
Volunteers will work from Monday to Friday during which they will cover different aspects of the project. Daily schedule starts at 08h00 am and finishes at 16h30 pm unless otherwise specified.
Volunteers will be accommodated where the program is presented 20km from Plettenberg Bay. All accommodation is comfortable, up-to-date with necessary amenities and on a sharing basis – 2 in a room.
Volunteers will be provided with three balanced meals per day.
Breakfast: help yourself to breakfast; cereals, fruit, yoghurts, toast and spreads
Lunch: this will be in the form of a packed lunch on excursion days or help yourself to lunch – with breads, fruits, cold meats, salad of the day and spreads.
Dinner: A hot meal will be served every night such as traditional BBQ (Braai), stews (Potjies), casseroles, fresh vegetables and meats being the order of the day. All dinners will include a meat, starch and vegetables.
Tea and coffee are available throughout the day. All other drinks are for volunteers’ own expense though the tap water is safe to drink.
A generous amount of wholesome food will always be given. If snacks are desired there are grocery stores nearby. There will be refrigeration available for personal foods and soft drinks. Volunteers are required to participate in the preparation of meals and to clean up after themselves after meals.
Meal times will be as following:
Breakfast: 07h30 – 08h00 am
Lunch: 12h00 – 13h00 pm
Dinner: 18h30 – 19h30 pm
Week 1 – Predator & Cat Husbandry, Care, Welfare and Management
During the first week volunteers will be guided through the various facets of general predator and African cat husbandry, animal welfare and animal management principles and protocols. The facilitator/instructor will guide the experience and the learning outcomes in a fun and entertaining manner.
Volunteers will get down and dirty with every facet of a predator’s life in a quasi captive environment. They will become involved in the various physical facility management functions on a day-to-day basis including repairs, maintenance and general operational requirements throughout the day. Volunteers will be required to report back on their experience and provide feedback to their fellow volunteers as to what they have experienced that day. Each day they will be tasked with individual and group research assignments.
Week 2 – Predi-Cat Behavioural Research
Much of what you experienced and learnt during the first week will be carried over to the second week. are guided through the use of various tools, techniques and mechanisms to record, monitor and note interesting behavioural observations and features pertaining to each of the Predators on a daily basis in a fun and informative way and use three key principles in behavioural monitoring namely, observation, interpretation and deduction.
Week 3 – Wildlife Rehabilitation & Veterinarian Interventions
During this week volunteers will be exposed to wildlife rehabilitation, the principles, procedures, protocols and general management methodologies to successfully rehabilitate injured wildlife for possible release back into their natural environment. The rehabilitation centre has a long and distinguished track record in rehabilitating wild animals and volunteers will be exposed to the centre and the handling of various animal patients on a daily basis under the expert guidance of the rehabilitation centre coordinator.
Due to the very nature of animal rehabilitation and care of resident predators and African cats, veterinary assistance will be required from time-to-time. During this week volunteers will be exposed to veterinary practices, protocols and procedures from an observation point of view. The resident veterinarian will make time available to discuss various aspects of veterinary practices, treatment strategies and a career as a veterinarian.
Week 4 – African Predi-Cat Experience Summary
During this last week of the program, volunteers will be tasked with an additional group task being undertaken where all observations found and observed on our African predator & cat journey so far, are brought together in a group project based. Individual experiences and interesting facts pertaining to a predator’s life, ecology, behaviour and adaptability are collated by the group into a presentation format. The document is copied, bound and presented to each participant when the program concludes. In addition to this, volunteers will be exposed to a variety of regional and localised conservation projects & conservation research initiatives. This region, due to its diversity of habitat and endemic species accounts is a favoured research zone.
Optional regional adventures & activities for our own account on weekends
Please note that these activities DO NOT form part of the program you are registered for. These optional activities are for your OWN ACCOUNT and in your off-time. Bookings are to be done through your facilitator and transport can be arranged and priced specific to where the activity is offered. In most instances facilitators will assist with arrangements, transport and accompany you.
Please note that a full list of adventures and prices will be available on arrival
- Bungy Jumping off Bloukrantz Bridge. From R700pp
- Canyoneering; From R500pp
- And a Combination Canyoneering & Abseiling Adventure in the Crags. From R1100pp
- Cage Swimming with Great White Sharks in Mossel Bay. From R800pp
- Animal Sanctuary Visit in Crags – Monkeyland, Birds of Eden and Jukani Predator Park. From R450pp
- Full Day in the Life of an African Elephant Program R1800pp
- Or a Full Day in the Life of a Game Ranger R1750pp
- Guided Walks on Robberg Peninsula From R300pp
- Guided Walks in Natures Valley From R300pp
- Guided Walks at Krantzkop From R350pp
- Guided Walks at Goukamma MPA Reserve From R350pp
- Guided Canoeing Adventures on Keurbooms Lagoon/Gorge From R350pp
- Guided Canoeing Adventure on the Goukamma River From R350pp
- Guided Canoeing Adventures in Natures Valley From R350ppGuided Interpretive Bush Walk Experiences From R300pp
- Guided Interpretive Birding Walk Experiences on the Garden
- Route From R300pp
- Various Experiential Bush Eco-Adventures and an Overnight Bush Survival Adventures just outside Plettenberg Bay R1750pp
- Skydiving in Plettenberg Bay and Tandem Paragliding in Wilderness or Sedgefield.
- SCUBA Diving in Plettenberg Bay or Knysna or Jeffreys Bay. From R500pp per dive
- Learn to Kite Surf or Sail in Knysna. From R2000pp
- Swim with Seals in Plettenberg Bay. From R500pp
- Pelagic Shark Day Adventure in Plettenberg Bay or Mossel Bay. From R2750pp
- Whale & Dolphin Watching Adventure in Plettenberg Bay (Seasonal)
- Sea Kayaking in Plettenberg Bay and Knysna. From R500pp
- Oudsthoorn Full Day Adventure – Cango Wildlife Ranch, Ostrich Farm and Cango Caves Wild Adventure From R1950pp
- Horse Riding in the Forests in the Crags or at Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve. From R500pp
- A Whole Host or Regional MTB Cycling Adventures are available
- Learn to Surf in Plettenberg Bay
Project start dates 2016
Project start dates 2017