By Botswana Unplugged
As part of Wilderness Safaris’ commitment to safeguarding Africa’s precious ecosystems, a unique conservation-focused safari at its brand new DumaTau Camp will offer guests a life-changing experience in support of collaring elephants in Botswana’s private Linyanti Wildlife Reserve.
In partnership with Eco-Exist, Wilderness Safaris will collar 10 elephants in 2021, in an effort to learn more about elephant movement patterns, and thus identify potential elephant corridors between rural communities to limit human-wildlife conflict. Once established, it is hoped that collaborative management of these corridors will enable ongoing free movement of elephant between Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Angola.
The six-night, conservation-driven safari will combine three nights at Vumbura Plains, a Premier camp in the heart of the Okavango Delta, with a three night stay at Wilderness Safaris’ newest offering, DumaTau, another Premier camp set to open later this year. Guests will be able to spend time with the elephant researcher at DumaTau, as well as take a helicopter ride to visit the Eco-Exist research base, learn more about human-wildlife conflict and the work being done to address it, meet the local Kgosi (chief), and help to install a water hand-pump in the community.
“With the data obtained from satellite collars fitted to elephants in the Linyanti, we can make an informed and important contribution to sustaining a balance between the safety and livelihoods of local community members, and the necessary and natural unfettered movement of elephants between protected areas”, explains Dr Neil Midlane, Wilderness Safaris Group Impact Manager.
“The entire value generated by this trip will be used to cover the costs of the collaring operation – veterinarians, helicopter time, capture drugs etc. – as well as the installation of a borehole pump in a nearby community that will reduce their need to travel long distances for water. Guests will also have the opportunity to assist with research and tracking of the newly collared elephants”, says Kim Nixon, Wilderness Safaris Botswana MD.
“For almost four decades, Wilderness Safaris has used our ecotourism business to generate sustainable economic value, for conservation and rural communities, from Africa’s priceless wilderness and wildlife. Despite the current challenges, we feel an immense sense of responsibility to ensure that our people and our wildlife continue to benefit. This exciting itinerary will help to keep this going and at the same time, provide a truly unique experience for conservation and community-minded travellers”, ends Neil.