The Stanley and Livingstone Private Game Reserve in Zimbabwe is in danger of becoming overpopulated with elephants, and is offering visitors a chance to help relocate some of its herd in August 2016, to help keep the fragile ecosystem from getting out of balance.
S&L, the only “Big Five” game reserve in the Victoria Falls region, encompasses 6000 acres of pristine wilderness populated with over 2000 different game species. Game drives encompass wildly varied terrain, from dense savannah bush, basalt plains, Kalahari sands, teak forests and picturesque lakes. The property also offers a genteel colonial-era lodge, and the swank Ursula’s Camp.
Ecological analyses from the ongoing elephant monitoring progamme at S&L’s Nakavango Conservation Centre show that the reserve will start to show reduced ecological carrying capacity for elephants in the near future.
Based on research carried out by the Reserve Manager, S&L aims to reduce the current elephant population by 5-7% to maintain ecological equilibrium. Elephant bulls will be translocated into neighbouring national parks. By moving off bulls specifically, disturbance to breeding herds will be kept to a minimum. Between 5 and 10 bulls will be translocated, depending on the overall elephant population on the reserve at the time.
Visitors can be part of this once-in-a-lifetime experience by volunteering as a 2016 Elephant OP assistant. Volunteer participation will be required throughout the operation, which will be managed by the leaders of the ground crew. Volunteers will work in teams which rotate between assisting the ground crew, ground crew observation and observing activities from the air in a helicopter.
The programme fee for this two-week experience is US$2970, and covers accommodation, airport transfers, meals, and participation in the Elephant OP (including observation time in the helicopter). The fee also contributes to the costs of this essential operation.
Volunteer visitors will also have the opportunity to view many other species of game during their time on the property, and work alongside conservation partners such as IAPF (International Anti-Poaching Foundation), VFWT (Victoria Falls Wildlife Trust), and AWMC (African Wildlife Management and Conservation).
- 3 August: Arrival, orientation, game drive, dinner around fire
- 4 August: Breakfast, morning game drive, Elephant Op briefing with Q&A session, lunch, overnight camping in bush on reserve
- 5 August: breakfast in camp, fence patrol with vehicles, lunch, afternoon: elephant monitoring
- 6 – 7 August: weekend… leisure time – opportunity to enjoy leisure/adventure activities in Victoria Falls
- 8 – 12 August: Nakavango 2016 Elephant Op… will include detailed daily briefings with plan of action, packed lunches, de-briefing, dinner. The entire operation may takes less than 5 days, in which case you will assist with our other Nakavango Conservation Programme (NCP) activities. Should the operation take more than 5 days and run into the weekend, we will do our best to give you leisure time on the Monday.
- 13 – 14 August: weekend… leisure time – opportunity to enjoy leisure/adventure
- 15 August: Breakfast, NCP activity, lunch, NCP activity
- 16 August: Breakfast, visit to community project at local school, lunch, final game drive, farewell dinner
- 17 August: Breakfast, checkout procedures and feedback, mid-morning transfer to airport
How to book:
- Email: email@example.com
Call: +263 775 640 351
Skype: NCP Operations