BOTLIERSKOP PRIVATE GAME RESERVE
In Alliance with African Wildlife Conservation Foundation
A deep-seated conservation ethic was passed down from the late Dr Dirk Neethling (wildlife vet,1962-2007) to his son and present-owner, Arnold Neethling.
Today, Botlierskop Reserve strives to uphold his conservation legacy in new and innovative ways. Which is why Botlierskop has joined forces with AWCF to actively enhance and promote wildlife conservation in Africa.
Through this exciting partnership, we will focus on special needs projects, working closely together to ensure a lasting, sustainable future for this spectacular continent and all creatures – man and beast – that are blessed to call Africa their home.
EAST AFRICAN CHEETAH RESTORATION PROJECT:
REWILDING OF CONFISCATED SOMALILAND CHEETAHS
This project aims to rehabilitate eight critically-endangered East African cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus soemmeringii). These weeks-old cubs were rescued from Ethiopia before they could be smuggled through Somaliland to the Middle East to be sold as exotic pets to rich sheiks. Removing tiny cubs like these from their mother is cruel and traumatising. This rewilding programme is spearheaded by Botlierskop Game Reserve and Ashia/Kuzuko, working in conjunction with the Endangered Wildlife Trust.
Any donations for Veterinary Safaris go to the African Wildlife Conservation Foundation (AWCF), a non-profit organisation. All proceeds will be used to get these cubs safely to South Africa for rewilding at Botlierskop Game Reserve.
Without their mother’s instinctive instruction, these cubs will need to be taught how to hunt and evade larger predators to ensure their survival before they can be released into the wild. Once the rewilding is successful, they will be released into Akagera National Park, Rwanda.
RELOCATION OF THE OXPECKER TO BOTLIERSKOP RESERVE.
The Oxpecker Project, initiated by the Endangered Wildlife Trust in 2002, aims to conserve and grow the existing population of Red-billed Oxpeckers (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) in South Africa.
By carefully reintroducing these birds back into areas where they were once plentiful, but are now extinct due to the use of organophosphate sheep and cattle dips, Botlierskop and AWCF hope to bring the endemic tick problem along the Garden Route under control once again.
These birds play a critical role in maintaining the balance between land-living mammals and tick infestations. Local farmers are also being mentored on the importance of using only Oxpecker-friendly dips.
GROUND BREAKING RESEARCH ON ANTI-CARCINOGENIC GENES IN ELEPHANT DNA & RE-WILDING OF ELEPHANTS
Currently, there are five free-ranging elephants at Botlierskop; three were rescued and rewilded at Botlierskop and two were born here.
One rescued calf came from a culling operation in Zimbabwe, another elephant was rescued from a zoo and the third elephant was rescued from a circus.
Together, the five elephants are thriving on 4,200 hectares of natural vegetation, assisting in destroying alien vegetation on the reserve.
OTHER CONSERVATION PROJECTS CO-FOUNDED AND CO-MANAGED BY BOTLIERSKOP AND AWCF
• Removing alien plant species from Botlierskop
• Rare Scimitar Oryx translocation and rewilding in North Africa
• Red-necked ostrich translocation and rewilding in North Africa
VETERINARY WILDLIFE SAFARIS by DR WILLEM BURGER in AID OF AWCF in COLLABORATION with BOTLIERSKOP
If you have a passion for wildlife and conservation, you can now experience a once-in-a-lifetime veterinary safari and get up-close-and-personal, assisting and witnessing first-hand the intricate and invaluable work a conservation veterinary surgeon does to ensure the preservation of our majestic African wildlife.
Join us and discover for yourself:
• A deeper understanding of the challenges and requirements, present and future, necessary to balance the delicate ecological scales between wildlife and human needs and how they compete for space and resources.
• An insight into the complex wildlife veterinary procedures and practices necessary in conservation and wildlife management
•How your participation in these vital services contributes to other leading conservation projects in Africa (AND you get to choose which project your funds will benefit)
What are these Vet Safaris about?
Most of these procedures involve darting the animal/s with a specially-formulated anaesthetic by our wildlife vet. Once the animal is immobilised and secured, you’ll go to work, assisting the vet to perform the required procedure.
These interventions and procedures assist with research and vital conservation tasks.
By participating in and contributing towards these specific projects, you are providing critical resources and assistance. Spearheaded by AWCF, these projects aim to be expanded throughout Africa.
The knowledge that you’re helping to protect and conserve a species and ensure its survival for future generations is surely one of conservationists’ greatest dreams and satisfactions.
Let us know which wild veterinary safari you’d like to be a part of and we’ll gladly keep you updated with its next scheduled procedure.
Updates and time schedules with exact procedures will be made public as soon as they are available. Of course, there will also be many impromptu rescue efforts to save injured animals.
We’d like to invite you to become part of our team effort to make meaningful changes in conservation and help save our planet.
We look forward to having you on board our Wild Vet Safaris soon!