Shamwari Conservation Experience

Volunteer / Gap Year Long Term Projects & Possible Activities

There are far too many activities to mention and highlight.  Listed below are a few of the general activities and tasks which are undertaken and we further advise that potential participants view what we have been up to more recently, by joining us on our social media.  Find all the links at the bottom of the website.

Game Monitoring: Rhino, Elephants, Predators
With regular monitoring, it is possible to identify individuals, compile information about the family structure and determine feeding and special ecology. Data collected is used to assist in the managing decisions for the reserve.

Camera Trapping and Telemetry Tracking
The setting and use of camera traps to monitor wildlife activity is a vital tool in gaining visual footage required to manage the reserve.  Monitoring of some of the more high-profile wildlife, like cheetah and leopard are required using telemetry tracking equipment.  This is largely as a result of the neighbouring properties carrying livestock and also the elusive nature of some of the species..

Restoration & Rehabilitation of Reserve Landscapes
The need to return the once pristine landscape to its original splendour includes the collecting and removal of old fence lines and rehabilitating degraded and overgrazed land.

Research Projects
Undertakings of research projects with a focus on a value added outcome for the reserve or conservation as a whole, are viewed as an incumbency. These projects are often undertaken in conjunction with both local and foreign research and academic institutions and may range from elephant fertility testing to capturing data on lesser known species such as Brown Hyena.

Alien Plant Control
Alien plants were introduced to the land by the farmers for different reasons and uses. Today these invasive plant life need to be removed to increase the natural biodiversity and decrease fire risk.

Born Free Foundation
It is the mission of both the Born Free Foundation and Shamwari Game Reserve to promote the conservation of species and the protection of habitat while maintaining a humane and compassionate approach to the welfare of animals. Therefore, it is their goal to create an awareness about the horrific way in which wildlife is exploited in captivity around the world. An opportunity will be given to visit the centres during your stay. 

Wildife Rehabilitation Centre (WRC)
Shamwari Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre was set up to aid in rehabilitating injured animals found on the reserve and surrounding community. The aim is to give the animal short-term care and release it back into their natural environment. Volunteers are sent when, and if, assistance is required as the centre is not a sanctuary. No animals are kept for purposes of breeding in captivity but are hosted with the aim of giving them a second chance to take on life back in the wild. The new centre boasts avian, small and large stock bomas (enclosure) areas, which house the various species that may find their way to Shamwari. Participants may gain different types of exposure through this experience, which dependent on the needs and requirements of the operation, may range from a assistance through to observation, to a more hands on animal care and husbandry.

Community Projects
The role of conservation does not stop at conserving nature alone, but also includes a responsibility to uplift local and impoverished communities. This responsibility includes education of the community as to the role and benefit of conserving biodiversity and further stresses the importance of conserving our natural resources.

Weekly trips are made into the local community to assist in various community projects that range from creating and maintaining vegetable gardens, recycling projects, painting classrooms and building jungle gyms.

General Reserve Maintenance

Possible Activities Include:

  • Sleep outs on the Big five reserve
  • Orientation and nature walks in the non big-five areas.
  • Assisting in night monitoring of activity on the reserve every 2 weeks.