Conservation and Environment in South Africa: Monthly Updates
Legodimo Nature Reserve - October 2008
We've had a busy month here at the conservation project and our world is finally going green again now we have had our first rains.
The volunteers have made great progress with opening up a new road and with the continuing removal of the old fence line on the reserve. The research drives and elephant hide observations are going well, we are collecting lots of useful data and we have been very lucky with leopard sightings over the past two months with some volunteers seeing one 5 or 6 times during their time here.
We also saw a herd of 7 Gemsbok in the north of the reserve for the first time in many months. Some renovations have been made at camp; an extra shaded sitting area was made using mopane latter and old thatching grass and the volunteers are currently in the process of making another rock garden under the water tank. The rock garden will also be home to some new camp residents, two Leopard Tortoises called Emily and Charlie.
Over the past few months we have regularly been setting up camera trap sites to lure in and capture some amazing images and video footage of the predators of Legodimo, large and small. The results of which have been more than spectacular, capturing; leopards, African civets, brown and spotted hyena's, honey badgers, and the occasional mischievous elephant trying to steal the camera! Luckily we got it back in one piece.
We had a four day stay in Mapungubwe National Park to help them clear their Eco-Route, a 4x4 drive route through the park. During this trip we also visited Venetia Limpopo Nature Reserve. Last month we took a second group of volunteers for a day on Makula Makete game reserve in South Africa.
These trips are proving very successful and educational for our volunteers as they get to see and experience cheetah conservation from the people who are at the forefront of current research. This reserve is currently working on re-wilding three captive bred cheetahs; they have two brothers in a coalition and one female.
Desk Officer Botswana