The perilous 1,000-mile journey to save Africa’s endangered black rhinos
28 Oct 2022
Since inception, SA College for Tourism Tracker Academy has graduated 74 trackers, 67 of whom are permanently employed in southern Africa’s conservation industry. This is a deployment success rate of 91%. Training is ongoing in both training campuses at Samara and Londolozi game reserves. Graduates accumulate some 1000 hours of practical tracking experience during the year’s course. The trainers at the Tracker Academy pride themselves on preparing students to track and find animals in varying types of terrain, a rare skill known as “Animal Trailing” – expertise desperately lacking in many wildlife protection organisations in Africa.
The young graduates earn their qualification during an intensive 12-month accredited tracker course. The first six-month semester is conducted at Samara Private Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape Karoo, a semi-desert biome. Thereafter, the students move to Londolozi Game Reserve, bordering Kruger National Park, to complete the second semester in the traditional bushveld savannah biome. This allows the students to master a wide range of skills and learn about wildlife’s diversity and behaviour in two extremely different environments. Equipped with their new skills and qualifications, the trackers take up employment at game farms and conservation areas across southern Africa.
For many of the students, this is not where their dreams end, though. With southern Africa in the midst of a wildlife crime crisis, many of them desire to dedicate their lives to protecting Africa’s iconic species from poachers. But to do so, they need further training – and this is where you can help.
Peace Parks Foundation needs to raise €10 500 to further educate passionate, hard-working trackers in the highly acclaimed wildlife protection ranger programme of the Southern African Wildlife College.
Africa needs more dedicated rangers to take on the onslaught of poaching. These young trackers have the drive and commitment to use their unique combination of skills to protect their natural heritage.
Your generous contribution can make this happen.
Click here to support these trackers