View Photos

Wildlife Conservation & Research Long Term Internship in South Africa

On this program, spend your time between two prominent conservation hubs in Limpopo, South Africa, where you will acquire a diverse range of skills on a six month internship in the bushveld.

View Photos



Organised by


Kick start your career in wildlife conservation with this six month internship in South Africa. Learn techniques to conduct wildlife research used by both private wildlife reserves and international organisations. In the second part of you internship, you will be able to put the newly learned skills into practice during your three month work placement.

Time Commitment

6 days a week

Active Periods

4 set start dates per year


Work and Activities Description

Start your career in conservation off right with three months of training and another three-month work placement.

  • Earn an ILM Endorsed Leadership Certificate as well as an EFR qualification, and complete a Biological Survey Techniques program.
  • Learn to identify predators, like lions, cheetahs, and leopards, as well as megaherbivores like elephants and rhinos.
  • Master radio telemetry techniques and learning how to track and record animal movements.
  • Live and work alongside Field Guide Association of South Africa, FGASA, qualified guides, growing personally and professionally by learning from their experiences.

During the first 12 weeks of your wildlife conservation internship in South Africa you will be staying with other conservation enthusiasts and our staff at the GVI base in the heart of Karongwe private nature reserve, an an hour from Kruger National Park. Here you can work with GVI to assist reserve management with maintaining a health predator and prey population as well as environmental rehabilitation projects like invasive plant removal. We also collect data on cheetah feeding behaviour and the impact of elephants on fragile plant species in collaboration with our local and international partners. Environmental education programs are also run in the nearby communities.

After successfully completing the training phase of your wildlife conservation internship in South Africa, qualifying candidates will continue on to their three-month work placement. Depending on your skills, interests and the requirements of our partner organisations, you may stay on with the GVI team taking on new responsibilities, or be based at a partner conservation organisation, at a private nature reserve, or an ecotourism lodge catering to tourists. Accommodation at the work placements vary, but all offer basic but comfortable accommodation for their staff.

Typical Day

Throughout your time on program you will work on various focuses and cover the following modules:

  1. Track – learn to track African wildlife and how to use this skill in day to day applications. Be taught practical experience and be assessed on a frequent basis to be able to quantify your skills in tracking animals, including the Big 5.
  2. Birding – In-depth birding, covering key identifications for any level of birder, building on life lists and being able to recall a vast array of calls.
  3. Distance Sampling – assist reserve management with the counting of all prey species on the property. Regular game counts provide vital information regarding the health of the reserve.
  4. Camera Trap Research – manage your own segment of a wide scale camera trap study, analysing data from cryptic species occurring on the range, building information that goes towards the greater data set with the possibilities of being put into scientific journals.
  5. Southern Africa Ecology – be given the opportunity to learn core scientific principles of environmental conservation whilst surrounded by one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world that touch millions of people every year.

You will also spend some time with a mentor as you complete a leadership course endorsed by internationally recognised body, ILM.

Free Time Activities

During the expedition you will have 1 day off a week. In this time you could visit the stunning local mountains (Karongwe), go curio shopping, or just spend some time wandering around the local town. At the end of each 4 week cycle volunteers have the opportunity to take 4 days off, during which they are free to arrange their own trips if they wish. Before and after your program you could visit Kruger National Park, the Blyde River Canyon, go bungi jumping or canyoning at Sabiethe possibilities are endles



Accommodation Options

Mixed dorm with a shared bathroom

Accommodation Description

Accommodation is in shared (mixed sex) rooms with shared bathroom facilities at both bases. There is cold running water available for showers. Flush toilet facilities are available, and participants share base duties, including cleaning and other chores.

If you are joining our long term internship, accommodation during work placements will vary depending on location. Accommodation will not be provided on breaks between program phases, you will be responsible for making your own arrangements.


Facilities Description



Food & Drink

Participants take it in turns to prepare meals for the group. Food is very basic with about two thirds of the meals vegetarian. Breakfast could be cereal, fresh fruit, rusks etc., lunch is typically sandwiches, salads and a typical evening meal may include rice, fresh veg, etc.

Internet Access

WiFi is available on on a ‘prepaid’ service on base, we advise participants bring extra cash to purchase WiFi credit.

Phone Signal

You will have limited access to long-distance communications whilst on the program, so make sure friends and family know how often they can expect to hear from you. Participants typically use mobile phones to keep in touch, with limited access to internet. MTN South Africa and Vodacom are the service providers that covers both bases. Check with your home service provider that they have roaming agreements with MTN or Vodacom. SIM cards and starter packs/ airtime are easily available on the weekly town trips for less than R5.00, but will require a passport for registration purposes.

Nearest Facilities

Airport Pickup

Airport pick up provided, this will be confirmed at time of booking


Language Requirements


Document Requirements

Passport, Criminal Background check, Medical form

Nationality Requirements

Qualification Requirements

Medical Requirements

Doctors note must be signed if you have any illnesses to declare

Other Requirements

Recommended Gear

Kit list will be provided at time of booking

Included Services

Before Journey Services / Support

Once you have confirmed your spot on this program, you will be allocated to a dedicated program expert who will assist you as you prepare for your program.

On-Site Support

Highly skilled project staff on base who facilitate the project, run training’s & assist with any additional health & safety needs if required. 24 Hour emergency phone. Please ask your program expert for more information.


Pricing Breakdown

You will be given the option to pay in instalments for an Instalment Fee of £125 per booking. If you select this Instalment Fee option, a non-refundable deposit payment of £350 is due within 48 hours of notice of acceptance onto the program, 50% of the balance will fall due 16 weeks before departure and the remaining 50% of the balance will fall due 12 weeks before departure. If you the Participant cancel this agreement, the Participant shall not be entitled to a refund of any monies paid.

If you do not select the Instalment Fee option, the full cost of your booking is due within 48 hours of notice of acceptance onto the program. If you the Participant cancel this agreement more than 16 weeks prior to departure, the Participant shall be entitled to a refund of the full amount paid minus £350.

If you the Participant cancel this agreement between 16 and 12 weeks prior to departure, the Participant shall be entitled to a refund of 60% of the full amount paid. If you the Participant cancel this agreement less than 12 weeks prior to departure, the Participant shall be entitled to a refund of £100.

Not Included in Price

  • Additional drinks and gratuities
  • Airport and reserve transfers
  • Extra local excursions
  • Flights
  • Food during the placement portion of your internship
  • Internal transport to placements
  • International and domestic airport taxes
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Personal items and toiletries
  • Police or background check
  • Visa costs (where necessary)

Reviews & Ratings

No items found.
Thank you for sending your review!

We will review it and aim to publish it within one working day.
Oops! There was a problem with one or more of the details you entered. Please check your details above and try again.

Prices start at:




I want to apply to…

Wildlife Conservation & Research Long Term Internship in South Africa

Thanks for your message. We will take a look and reply to you in one working day.
Oops! Something went wrong. Please check your details and try again.