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Tracking and Trailing on an EcoTracker Course

EcoTraining Professional Field Guide Student Jack Vicary shares his EcoTracker – Tracking & Trailing experience with us.

A time during Covid

Being a Field Guide Student in the Covid Pandemic

“Christmas 2019, which is now over two years ago, I was sitting with my family in Germany around the Christmas tree. Now in The Year of Covid, I have a completely different Christmas story to tell.” A year in the bush during a Pandemic by Anna Elisabeth Franz.

Giraffe Sunset

EcoTraining Puzzle: Giraffe Sunset

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Matching Pairs: Birds

EcoTraining Matching Pairs: Birds 1

Try your hand at this EcoTraining’s Matching Pairs: Birds

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Rhino puzzle

EcoTraining Puzzle: White Rhino

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Racket-tailed Roller

The Elusive Racket-tailed Roller of Makuleke

The Racket-tailed Roller has a rather limited distribution in South Africa, primarily being found in the far northeastern tip of Kruger National Park which is dominated by Mopane (Colophospermum mopane) which occurs in dense stands with limited ground cover as its understory. Let instructor Ross Hawkins explain more about this elusive bird.

EcoTraining Puzzle: Lioness

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WEB-Makuleke-photography-Course_April-27-2017_0009

EcoTraining Matching Pairs: Creepy Crawlies

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Did you know that “Creepy crawlies are insects which creep (walk slowly) or crawl (walk on four or more legs).”

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South Africa Is Travel Ready

The lift in restrictions could not have come at a better time. South Africa is known for its lovely weather and what better time to step foot on South African soil than during the spring months leading to summer. You can look forward to lovely weather as you enjoy the stunning beaches, wildlife and landscape the country has to offer.

EcoTraining Quiz: Migratory Birds

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Primates

EcoTraining Quiz: Primates

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Celebrating the Limpopo River | World River Day 2020

According to the World Rivers Day Association this day “is a celebration of the world’s waterways. It highlights the many values of our rivers, strives to increase public awareness, and encourages the improved stewardship of all rivers around the world. Rivers in virtually every country face an array of threats, and only through our active involvement can we ensure their health in the years ahead.’’

Loal is lekker

EcoTraining Quiz: South Africa is ‘Lekker’

Test your knowledge with this week’s EcoTraining ‘Lekker’ Quiz!


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Remember, Local is Lekker

Why not spend your time in the wilds of Africa whilst enjoying twice-daily activities at one of EcoTraining unfenced camps within the Limpopo Province. Or have a look what the other 8 amazing provinces in South Africa could have in store for you. Because you know, ‘Local is Lekker’

EcoTraining Quiz: Cuckoo’s

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EcoTraining Quiz: Become a Field Guide |||

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EcoTraining Bird Quiz

EcoTraining Quiz: Waterbirds

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EcoTraining Crossword: Trails Guide

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EcoTraining Quiz: Trails & Tracking

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Ground Pangolin

Real-life Sighting | a Pangolin in Makuleke

Pangolin factsIf you have ever had the privilege of seeing a pangolin in real life, you will know the magnitude of this sighting. It will most definitely be the rarest sighting you will mostly like have whilst out in the African bush on Safari.

As you can see by the stats on your left, this is the most trafficked animal in the world – now, let that sink in!

So, what is the reason for the trafficking of these incredible creatures?

“Large-scale trafficking is driven by a belief that pangolin scales have magical and curative properties and demand for their meat. When mixed with bark from certain trees, the scales are thought to neutralize witchcraft and evil spirits. If buried near a man’s door they are said to give an interested woman power over him.” – African Wildlife Foundation

Did you know that there were four species of pangolin in Africa?

Well, now you do. These four species are as follows:
1. Giant Ground Pangolin (Smutsia gigantea)
2. Temminck’s Ground Pangolin (Smutsia temminckii)
3. The Black-Bellied Pangolin (Phataginus tetradactyla)
4. The White-Bellied Pangolin (Phataginus tricuspis)

If you want to learn more about pangolin’s and other endangered species have a look at the EcoTraining Endangered Species Quiz.

Now, you might be wondering why were are talking about pangolin’s, yes they are fascinating creates and we could probably talk pangolin facts all day, but something very exciting happens this week at our EcoTraining Makuleke Camp that we just have to share with you!

We’re going to let instructor Sean Matthewson fill us in…

“As a cold front rages across South Africa, all creatures, both large and small seek refuge from driving winds. But in an isolated pocket of wilderness, deep in the forest, a pangolin negotiates the terrain and approaching storm.

Every time a gust of wind blows through the forest floor, this little hero rolls up into a defensive ball. He’s not sure whether or not these gusts of wind are friend or foe, and rather opts to be safe.
In these uncertain times, it’s safe thinking like that which will ensure his survival.

Pangolins are the most trafficked animal on Earth, with the majority of animals finding their way to Eastern markets for consumption, and likely, unfounded medicinal practice. It is for this reason that this little champion of the elements will be left free and wild in an undisclosed location (exactly where and as we found him).

Suffice to say, this little armoured tank is considered the Holy Grail of the African bush, with many an avid explorer never having a single opportunity to see him in the wild. It is also the only animal (to this author’s knowledge) that in an instant, can turn a grown man into a blubbering child, overcome with the sheer pleasure of the privilege of a glimpse.

As we sat watching the star of the show, I couldn’t help but think to myself that this could be the last time I set eyes on a pangolin in my lifetime. I am, however, utterly at peace with this notion, as I am among the lucky few and that my search for the Holy Grail, is in fact over.

It is, however, my hope that even now, in conservation’s darkest moments, that these astounding creatures will still find their place in the Anthropocene, and that my children’s children will too stand one day in the presence of greatness, as I did.

My gratitude extends to EcoTraining, without whom this opportunity could never have materialized!”

Want to watch this real-life sighting?

 

 

Reptiles Quiz

EcoTraining Quiz: Reptiles

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EcoTraining Quiz: Amphibians

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Eco-Isolation with EcoTraining

Jennifer Palmer is an impassioned wildlife biologist, a global educator, public speaker, and an intrepid lover of nature. She is one of the founders of Women for Wildlife, and through her work, she has become a trusted advisor to nonprofits, governments, foundations, film producers and business leaders around the world. We were very happy to host her at one of our EcoTraining Camps during the lock-down and help her ‘eco-isolate’ in a safe place that brought her so much joy.

Become a Guide

EcoTraining Quiz: Become a Field Guide ||

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Hippo Facts

EcoTraining Quiz: Hippopotamus ||

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Birding Quiz

EcoTraining Quiz: Endangered Birds

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