My Sabbatical learning to become a Game Ranger in the bush!

African Conservation


Stuart Spindler
The Game Ranger course was brilliant! There were six of us, five guys and one girl of ages ranging from 18 to 50+. Our course leader was an absolute legend, an African, who had worked for 30 years in the bush. He had a wealth of stories to tell, about everything from safari exploits to politics.

The location of the camp was great, right on the banks of the Oliphants River. We did two game trips a day one by foot and the other by vehicle. I loved the walks and we got close to some big game including elephants, giraffes, hippos and buffalo. We also had some great game sightings from the camp, especially hippos, crocodiles and elephants.

We did some studying each day and at the end of the course had two exams and two practical tests. I passed fine. We also had a couple of outings to Kruger National Park and to an animal rehabilitation centre. The latter was interesting, I cuddled a baby rhino and fed a vulture from my hand, cool.

The team gelled nicely and we had some really fun times. It was quite sad when we parted company after two weeks, some went back home, some off to other projects . I now know lots about all the main African animals and the smaller ones, the trees and their uses, insects, reptiles and birds. Oh, and I am also something of an expert on poo of various types and I know what a termite tastes like!

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