Student blog update 4 August 2013

Students saying bye to Savannah

Friday was our last full working day at the Centre, and we enjoyed our day by cleaning the dip tank (which left four of us looking like smurfs!), and helping to move the cheetahs. That afternoon we spent at Sleepers restaurant – the place to be in Hoedspruit. Volunteers enjoyed some delicious pizza and cocktails which consisted of “sex in the bush”, and “giggling giraffes”.  A fun evening was had!

Cheetah run using the Lure Machine


Saturday was survival day.  All of us had prepared our notes on the various trees, insects and tracks which can be found around us. We realised that trees all look identical when one doesn’t really know what they are looking for. Eventually, after a lot of guessing, everyone managed to identify their trees. The Centre’s staff also prepared two surprises for us. The first was watching the cheetah lure. The second highlight was being able to go into Crunchie and Milkybar’s enclosures and interact with them. It was an amazing experience to be so close to them and to hear them purring.

Leading edge micro light flights

Karen gave us a conservation lecture that afternoon, and at 17:00 we all packed our things into the safari van for our sleep out. We had an evening of braaing and learning Afrikaans. Unfortunately not much sleep was to be had. On Sunday everyone woke up exhausted. This was our last day, having survived ‘survival day’!  We chose to spend our last day doing the micro light flights, where we were able to view all the animals from an aircraft. We saw rhino, elephants, zebra, giraffes, buffalo and impala.

Buffalo view from the micro light flight safari

Although some of us were scared in the beginning, once the adrenalin kicked in, everyone started to enjoy themselves. We ventured to the Centre for a final tour to see Savannah and Bubbles for the last time. A water fight broke out in the whole camp, but soaked Tabs refused to join in.

Our time has passed so quickly here and we have loved every moment! Thank you for everything!!!