Balule Conservation Project in the Greater Kruger National Park, South Africa

Company : Afreco
Location : South Africa
Duration: < 1 week to 6 months
Approx Costs: 250 to 3000+ £ Pound (UK)

The Transfrontier Africa, Balule Conservation Project is located in the Balule Nature Reserve, Greater Kruger region of South Africa.

By Volunteering on this project, you will get a unique opportunity to assist with vital conservation work and gain access to the African wilderness and the amazing array of wildlife that inhabits the region.

The Balule Conservation Project works closely with Elephants Alive (formerly Save the Elephants Foundation, South Africa) who support the research carried out by the project team and the students, interns and volunteers that assist with collating this data.

In adition to elephant research the project has also become heavily involved with rhino conservation and anti-poaching measures and has close links with the Black Mamba Anti Poaching Unit.  Rhinos were always of interest to the research in this part of Greater Kruger but it has become a necessity in the wake of the Rhino poaching scurge that the whole of Africa has found itself in the grip of.  

The research area you will be located in forms part of the famous Kruger National Park. Greater Kruger is just an extended area of the Kruger Park where private game reserves have dropped their fences to Kruger to allow for freedom of movement for the animals that inhabit it. The reserve is in the heart of Big 5 territory with Lion, Elephant, Rhino, Leopard and Buffalo all present.

This exciting project contributes to the overall management of the reserve, by collecting data on wildlife and vegetation. There is a major focus on elephant herds and predators, although from time to time other studies are undertaken, such as the effect of overhead power lines on giraffes. The research on elephants forms a strong relationship with Elephants Alive. Craig Spencer, the Project Leader, is an experienced conservationist who lives, eats, breathes and sleeps conservation!  He is also the Warden for the Olifants West area so the project research is directed straight into the reserves management.

During your stay on the project you will get involved in a variety of conservation activities. There are daily surveys to monitor the various animal populations within the reserve.   You may be asked to assist with vegetation surveys (depending on the time of year), waterpoint surveys, alien vegetation removal and the occasional trip into town to resupply. You may also have the chance to attend calls from trackers and rangers, from the lodges, when the focal species of the project, such as mega-herbivores, predators and wildebeest are reported.

The project camp offers volunteers an authentic, unforgettable bush experience.

Start Dates

Dates are flexible and costs calculated on the number of days spent on the project. There are no set dates/days for joining the project.

Costs / Benefits

Benefits...You will be helping with a genuine conservation program and learning a lot about wildlife research. You are also supporting an NGO which also runs the world-famous all-female Blackmamba anti-poaching unit!


Relatively fit and healthy. A good attitude, able to work with others, a passion for conservation and wildlife and willing to get a bit hot & sweaty sometimes!

Booking / Enquiry

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