The Year Ahead for Animal Conservation Abroad

The Year Ahead for Animal Conservation Abroad

Posted by James Whiteman on 21st Jan 2013

Firstly, we'd like so say a big thank you to everyone who took part with animal conservation abroad and booked with us in the last twelve months that helped make 2012 our best year ever! We've seen some fantastic news, such as the number of new projects launched in Africa, the fantastic progress made at IAR's Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre at Ketapang and the continued successes at the Matang Wildlife Centre.

We finished off the year with perhaps our biggest and best news. Firstly, the release of Pelangsi - a one armed male orangutan - by IAR in December which was a fantastic way to end the year. Secondly, November's Great Gorilla Project went brilliantly, with some spectacular wildlife viewing twinned with community work. As part of Our Sponsorship Promise, on the trip we were extremely glad to hand over a cheque to the Kisoro Demonstration School for 10,000,000 Ugandan shillings, which is enough to sponsor 22 disabled children through school with school dinners for the next 12 months! Find out more about the success of this trip and the sponsorship here.

Ushering in 2013, we have launched two brand new projects and a new tour.

The first project is located in South Africa's Easter Cape Province in the beautiful and 'Big Five' filled Shamwari Game Reserve, consistently voted as one of the world's finest. Volunteers on the Shamwari Conservation Experience will get to work behind the scenes, joining a dedicated and expert team. With a dedicated wildlife department, Animal Rehabilitation Centre, Animal Hospital and Rhino Awareness Centre, volunteers will gain first-hand experience and insight through a vast array of tasks. This may range from tracking and monitoring of rare and endangered species such as rhino, elephants and predators and working at the famous Born Free Foundation Big Cat Sanctuary. The project's volunteers may also be involved with local community projects. Harriet is just back from visiting the project, so if you'd like to know more, email her here.

The second new project is the Sabah Marine Conservation Project based on a small tropical island off of the northern tip of Malaysian Borneo. While the main focus of this project is to renovate the coral reefs that have been badly damaged due to 45 years of fish bombing, volunteers will also be working to help protect the endangered Green and Hawksbill Turtles who come to the beautiful Pom Pom Island to nest. The ultimate goal of the project is to rebuild fish and coral populations so that the occasional reef sharks are encouraged to stay and remain resident within this sanctuary for sharks, rays, turtles and all marine life. Volunteers have the opportunity to not only become fully immersed into the world of marine conservation but will also come away with a PADI scuba diving qualification.

And finally, this year we are really excited to reveal our tour to Madagascar – The Great Lemur Adventure! August will see the first Great Projects trip to this fascinating island to see its lemurs, chameleons and other fascinating endemic wildlife and spectacular scenery, a true naturalist's paradise. The tour will take in a huge chunk of the island, from the rugged highland interior to its palm lined eastern coast and the rainforest in between. As well as close encounters with Madagascar's unique wildlife. There will be the opportunity to meet local communities with the aim of promoting the idea that the environment and its animal inhabitants are worth more alive than destroyed. An adventure on Madagascar has been a dream of ours here for some time and it should be a wonderful 2 weeks! Find out more here.

We'll have more exciting news soon and even more fantastic projects and unique tours to make this year even better than the last!


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