Why the buffalo?

Anton Lategan, co-owner and managing director of EcoTraining, is more than passionate about his company, EcoTraining. Having owned it since 1993, he is the DNA of EcoTraining and all that it stands for. Anton feels that there are certain attributes of EcoTraining that should never change, no matter the influences of technology, outside opinions or current trends.

You may have noticed a gentle metamorphosis of our logo over the past few years?  It has evolved from our long-standing brand name, EcoTraining, with a buffalo sketch on the left, to our name with no buffalo at all, to our current logo. Much effort and time went into sourcing a new icon for our logo, in fact the process took, on-and-off, over two years!  And at the end of it all?  A very similar logo to our old one except it has a more modern font and a neater sketch of the buffalos which now come running from the right.

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So after trying icons of trees, elephants, footprints, guides on foot and many more African wildlife symbols, why is the buffalo pair still with us after 15 years?  Well we may ask, why not?

Besides the fact that an icon consistently associated with a brand for a long period of time is a very important marketing tool, we also asked Anton why he couldn’t let go of the buffalo icon.  And we also asked him – what do buffalo really have to do with field guide and nature training?

Anton enlightened us on his connection to and reason behind the presence of buffalo in our logo:

  1. The buffalo were there from the beginning and I respect that.  I stand for old-school rules and respect our heritage.  I hope that we teach this through EcoTraining.
  2. I don’t believe that everything has to change and I don’t believe that anything has to change if it works.
  3. Buffalos are very caring animals.  Our mother buffalo and calf represents this to me. There is a leader of a herd, teaching and protecting the young.
  4. If you look carefully the buffalo are mobile and possibly distressed indicating that “not all is well”… as is true for the world around us.
  5. Do you know a buffalo will leave the herd and turn to face a pride of lions that are attacking a member of its family? They will risk their very existence for others.
  6. Buffalos generally have a positive effect on the environment: their hooves tilt the soil while their grazing action improves the condition of the grassland for others. Their excretion also spreads fertilizers and irrigates the grassland!
  7. Don’t mess with Buffalo!
  8. Refer to point 7…
  9. Buffalos are gregarious
  10. Buffalos host oxpeckers and rely on these birds for an early warning system, demonstrating an interdependence in nature
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“So these are the qualities about the buffalo that resonate for me in the EcoTraining logo” concludes Anton.  Many people may not have related to our logo symbol before this blog.  We hope that Anton has now given you a deeper appreciation of what EcoTraining represents.  As we hold onto the buffalo icon in our logo, so we aim to hold onto those important values in EcoTraining.