Iconic to Africa – The Majestic African Elephants

Iconic to Africa are the Majestic African Elephants

Africa is home to two species of elephants: the African Savanna Bush elephant and the African forest elephant. These majestic animals are an iconic part of Africa’s natural heritage and play a crucial role in maintaining the ecological balance of their respective habitats. 

Africa’s elephants still face severe threats like illegal hunting for ivory and meat, habitat loss and degradation, and human-elephant conflict. As with most wild animals, humans need to prioritise the conservation of the world’s elephants and their habitats.

elephant close up

Photograph © Tere Abumohor

the head of an elepanht

Photograph © Cameron Clements

In and around areas like the Kruger National Park, the issue of elephant management is highly debated. It has become a controversial issue, as some argue that in these specific areas, there are too many elephants. 

“Elephants are our ecological engineers; they play a vital role in maintaining our landscape. In an ideal world, we’d like to lean into the trans frontier parks initiative where they are dropping fences, as they’ve done between Pridelands and Balule. A lot of research still needs to be done to see how all these things affect the elephants,” said David Havemann, EcoTraining Training Manager. 

As the space battle is fast becoming one of the biggest challenges for both elephants and humans, the translocations of elephants in areas like the Kruger National Park are becoming one of the most effective solutions to safeguarding elephant populations and protecting the needs of surrounding communities. 

elephants in the riverbed

Elephants in the riverbed

elephant trunk upwards

Photograph © Marno de Klerk

“At EcoTraining, we are committed to giving our students a deeper understanding of the natural world. We ensure that our students know animals like elephants are classed as keystone species and play a crucial role in preserving and maintaining the biodiversity of the ecosystems they inhabit. It is up to all of us to find creative solutions to minimise human-elephant conflict and promote peaceful coexistence,” said EcoTraining Managing Director Anton Lategan. 

What can we do?

1. Raise Awareness

Starting a course with an organisation like EcoTraining is a great way to educate yourself and others about elephants’ challenges and the importance of their conservation. Another way of doing this is by sharing credible information on social media. 

2. Promote Responsible Tourism

If you plan to visit regions where elephants live, choose responsible tour operators that prioritise the well-being of elephants and the conservation of their natural habitats. 

two elephants in the water trunks and tusks

Photograph © Christoff Els

elephant and person from behind with a cap

Photograph © Tayla McCurdy

3. Engage with Local Communities 

Support projects that involve local communities in conservation efforts. Encouraging sustainable livelihoods and offering alternative sources of income can reduce the dependence on activities that are harmful to elephants. 

4. Combat the Illegal Wildlife Trade 

Report any illegal wildlife activities to authorities or relevant organisations—support measures to combat the illegal trade in elephant ivory and other elephant parts. 

By working together, we can all significantly impact the conservation of the elephant population and other endangered animal species. 

Swimming with Elephants | Pridelands Camp

Have you ever seen elephants disappear? No, it’s not a magic trick, but we have seen it with our own eyes.

How? Well, have you ever seen an Elephant swim?

First, you see something moving out of the corner of your eye, and you smile when you realize that elephants are nearby. You sit quietly by the dam, not daring to move, hoping that they will come fully into view. Next, you see them silently running to the waterhole; it’s a race, and the victor always looks incredibly pleased with him/herself. They pause, take a drink and start splashing themselves with the water.  And then the magic happens.

About the Author:
EcoTraining Connect

EcoTraining Connect

EcoTraining, which has been in operation since 1993, is the innovator and top provider of training for safari guides and wildlife experts in Africa.

Explore more

a group of students looking at tracks in the sand

Understanding Wildlife Tracking

The ancient art of tracking unveils the secrets of animal behaviour. We explore the key steps of identifying, interpreting, and tracking wild animals in the heart of the South African wilderness.

“Do not be afraid to get dirty. Get down on your knees and have a close look at the tracks. It is essential to take your time. You can make a mistake by being too quick on the trigger when identifying tracks,” said Gerhard Delport, a former EcoTracker student.

Read more
students at lanner gorge

EcoTraining Celebrates 30 Years of Excellence

Thirty years of EcoTraining is a significant milestone. This celebration is a testament to EcoTraining’s long history of promoting field guiding and wildlife conservation. It’s an opportunity to inspire the next generation of passionate individuals who will continue the legacy of creating guardians of the natural world.

Read more
a group of students walking in nature.

How do I become a Backup Trainee for EcoTraining? 

“To be selected as a backup trail guide is a privilege and carries great responsibility. You are responsible for the life of the Lead Trails Guide and the lives of guests who are with you and require a great deal of trust”, says Gino Cinquina, former EcoTraining Backup. As a backup trainee for EcoTraining, you can walk in beautiful wilderness areas and experience incredible moments on foot with wild animals.

Read more

Start your wildlife career

Want to become a field or nature guide? Explore our immersive courses and training programmes for professional safari guides and guardians of nature, taught and led by experts in the industry.

EcoTraining offers career and accredited courses, wildlife enthusiast courses, gap year programmes and customised group travel courses.

Join our nature-loving community.

× Available from 08:00 to 16:30 Available on SundayMondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturday