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Wildlife Research Expedition 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

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Travel to South Africa to contribute towards wildlife conservation initiatives, while learning about the best practice of field guiding. Conduct scientific research, assist in habitat restoration and record the movements of savannah animals such as hyenas, lions, leopards, elephants and rhinos in the Limpopo province.

Time Commitment

Monday - Friday

Active Periods

All year round with set start dates


Work and Activities Description

On this six month internship, you will spend your first segment (three months) of the program on the Mahlahla campus at Bushwise Field Guides, learning about various scientific field research techniques, gaining practical skills related to becoming a well-rounded field biologist, and immersing yourself in the unique cultural landscape.

Tasks that you might be involved in include learning more about safety in the field, how to set up a camp, along with its management and logistics, as well as animal behaviour related to safety and data collection.

Then you will make the short journey to Karongwe campus, kicking off an entirely new segment, where you will have the opportunity to apply some of the skills you have acquired from the first module in a more practical way, while also learning about interesting conservation topics such as habit restoration, spending time tracking wild animals, studying their behaviour as well as possibly contributing to relevant community outreach programmes in the region. Tasks that you might be involved in include engaging with bio-surveying techniques, participating in various environmental education initiatives and taking part in one-on-one mentorship sessions from an internship coordinator.

Typical Day

Mahlahla Highlights include;

  • Learn the art of bushveldt survival, such as anticipating the weather, tracking animals and learning to find a water source.
  • Track predators like lions, cheetahs, and leopards, as well as mega-herbivores like elephants and rhinos.
  • Learn to identify an array of flora, such as trees, grasses and the practical uses of indigenous plants
  • Improve your employability by gaining practical skills in the conservation industry, and studying the various field research techniques.
  • Spend three months in the quiet hush of the wild open spaces and waking each morning to a chorus of savannah bird

Karongwe Highlights

  • Master radio telemetry techniques and learning how to track and record animal movements.
  • Learn practical skills on the ground, such as conducting research drives to collect data and working in a private reserve.
  • Explore one of the most beautiful regions in Africa in your free time, while bonding with your fellow volunteers from all over the world.
  • Sleep under the star-filled Southern night sky and wake to a golden African dawn; a bucket list item for many volunteers.

Free Time Activities

In your free time, visit the famous Kruger National Park, only an hour away from where we are based or visit the nearby Drakensberg Mountains where awe inspiring vistas are offered over the Blythe River Canyon.



Accommodation Options

Mixed Dorms

Accommodation Description

Accommodation is in shared rooms with shared bathroom facilities at the field station with 2 people per room. We try and keep these same sex but on the odd occasion you may need to share with someone from the opposite sex when there are odd numbers, this will be communicated with you in advance. There is hot water available for showers. Flush toilet facilities are available, and participants share general cleaning duties around base and are responsible for their own rooms.


Facilities Description



Food & Drink

During you 3 months with Bushwise, meals are prepared for you by our catering team. Food is generally western style with some cooked in the traditional local style. Breakfast could be cereal, porridge, fresh fruit, pancakes, etc., lunch is sandwiches, pasta and sauce, etc. and a typical evening meal may include rice, mielie pap, meat, fresh veg, etc. During your 3 months in Karongwe, you will take it turns to make meals with fellow volunteers

Internet Access

Participants typically use mobile date, internet is available but unreliable at times.

Phone Signal

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. WiFi is available on base.

Nearest Facilities

The nearest emergency medical hospital is located in Tzaneen, about an hour’s and twenty minutes drive from base. All staff are trained in Emergency First Response. Detailed Risk assessments are part of training, as are the Emergency Action Plans, including regular drills to ensure familiarity by all.

Airport Pickup

Provided, please inquire for more information


Language Requirements


Document Requirements

Passport, Criminal Background check, Medical form

Nationality Requirements

Qualification Requirements

Medical Requirements

Medical form to be signed off by doctor if you have any illnesses to declare

Other Requirements

Must apply for a STUDY visa

Recommended Gear

Kit list will be sent 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 staff in field to facilitate program & conduct training


Pricing Breakdown

Not Included in Price

  • Additional drinks and gratuities
  • Extra local excursions
  • Flights
  • International and domestic airport taxes
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Personal items and toiletries
  • Police or background check
  • Visa costs (where necessary)

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Wildlife Research Expedition Long-Term Internship In South Africa

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