WHEN TO VOLUNTEER - CHOOSING YOUR DATES

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Conservation volunteering in southern Africa is rewarding during any month and season with the ever changing landscapes developing from dusty, arid and earthy Africa to the emerald green and flourishing summer months after the rains have fallen.

With the 3rd highest biodiversity in the world, South Africa is a wildlife haven throughout the year, however there are a few particular months when some projects are particularly busy or when specific work takes place...

South Africa’s diversity is vast, with varied terrain, habitats and wildlife - a photographers dream!

The seasons in South Africa generally fall as follows:

  • Spring - September & October
  • Summer - November to February
  • Autumn - March to May
  • Winter - June to August

JANUARY

One of the hottest months of the year, the rains allow for flourishing vegetation to support the wildlife and with food at capacity the breeding season is in full swing in the lowveld. The first Game Ranger Experience of the year introduces you to conservation, ranger tracking and reserve management in the iconic greater Kruger area.

FEBRUARY

Ornithologists can enjoy migrant birds during the summer with diverse birdlife and over 800 species recorded! A good time of year to observe predator behaviour also.

MARCH

Start of the wildlife capture season and a very busy time for wildlife vets in southern Africa as the cooler months allow for more veterinary work with wildlife. An ideal time to join wildlife conservation and management projects studying young animals and developing behaviour of family herds.

APRIL

A beautiful time of year in southern Africa, with warm temperatures and breeding herds dispersing through dense bush.

MAY

The famous Sardine Run generally takes place between May and July, along the Eastern Cape and KZN coast - visit Phinda Wildlife Research Project and take a trip to the coast for this unforgettable sight!

JUNE

June to October is a great time for whale watching off the coast of South Africa, join the Coastal Conservation & Education Project to see these magnificent migratory species.

JULY & AUGUST

Winter in South Africa, with wildlife relying on waterholes after little or no rain for months. Wildlife congregate in dense herds around waterholes which makes for excellent game viewing. Predator prey behaviour is at its prime in close proximity with prey.

SEPTEMBER

Wildlife capture season comes to an end as the temperature increases and the breeding season starts.

OCTOBER

Coming into summer, the weather is warmer and the projects traditionally have a wide range of ages volunteering. A great time to volunteer if you are looking to avoid the “gap year” season.

NOVEMBER

Summer is officially in South Africa, with the first rains of the season dramatically changing the vast bush from dry and arid to green and leafy...a much needed food source for the upcoming months.

DECEMBER

Enjoy Christmas with rhino, caracals, bushbabies, lions and more at Care for Wild Africa, the Moholoholo Rehabilitation Centre and the Chipangali Wildlife Orphanage & Research Centre. Become part of the wider ACE family and have a rewarding and sun filled Christmas! The Drakensberg Mountains are stunning at this time of year, with sunsets throughout South Africa providing a shot of pinks and reds against a beautiful emerald green bush.

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