A trip set up by Imaginative Traveller for Colchester Zoo to bring visitors to their UmPhafa Private Nature Reserve in KwaZulu Natal has helped raise over £2,000 for charity Action for the Wild. This will help fund Field Rangers and vital research equipment. The rangers play a crucial role in assisting with security as well as monitoring high priority species and the equipment in the form of one GPS and camera traps which will provide an insight into species' movements around the reserve.
Camera traps are a great tool to have on a reserve as they give important information that is very difficult to gather by other means; showing the activity and distribution of some of the more elusive animals on the reserve, particularly at night. The information gathered from the camera traps will be used to update species lists for certain areas and also to create distribution lists. As an example, photos captured of leopards across the reserve have given us good indication of the individuals operating in each area and has allowed staff to roughly determine distribution across the reserve and their population makeup.
The trip which was put together by Imaginative Traveller takes in South Africa and Swaziland and spent time at Kruger as well as Colchester Zoo's reserve. Those on the tour had the exclusive chance to see how it operates and met the team and drove through thebush to spot some of the amazing animals that have been introduced to the area.