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Mangetti Wild Dog and Elephant Protection Project

Venture into the remote wilderness of northern Namibia.

As a conservation volunteer at Mangetti National Park, your first adventure will be getting here. From the capital city, Windhoek in central Namibia, you’ll make the 600-kilometre journey north along ever-smaller roads to one of the remotest corners of southern Africa.

This is real frontier wildlife conservation, in a region where you won’t bump into tourist safaris and elephants haven’t learned to pose for photos. Instead, the wildlife here is truly wild and cautious to avoid humans altogether.

Your role as a volunteer will be to try and keep things this way. Working alongside conservationists, you’ll help prevent animals and humans from coming into conflict. You’ll also get to experience the thrill of monitoring and tracking wildlife across the vast expanses of wilderness.

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Category

Wildlife Research and Management

Species

African wild dog, elephant

Impact

Human-wildlife conflict
Wildlife research and management

Country

  Namibia

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  • Highlights
  • Do
  • Learn
  • News
  • Costs

Highlights

Remote location

You can’t get much further from the beaten track than Mangetti. This is an area that hasn’t been discovered by tourists, giving you the chance to experience a slice of real wild Africa.

Small project

Only the most hardy conservation travellers make it to Mangetti, which means you’ll be an important member of the project’s small, close-knit team.

See a different side of Namibia

If your mental image of Namibia is all desert and sand dunes, you’ll be amazed at the landscape that greets you at Mangetti. Dense African bush stretches out for thousands of acres in every direction, providing excellent cover for the wildlife that lives here.  

Save the African wild dog

Endangered in the wild, there are now just 6,500 African wild dogs left and numbers are forecast to decline even further.

Tackle human-wildlife conflict

Intolerance by local farmers of the negative impact of elephants and African wild dogs on their farming activities are a serious threat to their survival, something the project is working hard to prevent.

DO

As a volunteer at Mangetti your role will be very hands-on. Focusing on the protection and management of wild elephants, African wild dogs and their prey, you’ll get involved in the following activities:

Wildlife research and monitoring

Learn how to track animals over thousands of acres, using both high-tech and ancient monitoring techniques.

  • Set up camera traps for 24/7 monitoring of elusive wildlife such as wild dogs
  • Identify individual wild dogs on camera trap footage from their unique coat pattern
  • Learn how to analyse footage to estimate population numbers and group structures
  • Use GPS equipment to track and monitor elephants across the wilderness, exploring herd structure and mapping their habitat
  • Learn how to track elephants by identifying wildlife signs and spoors
  • Monitor ungulates such as oryx, springbok and mountain zebra to ensure
  • Mangetti National Park has a sustainable source of water and avoids overgrazing

Community outreach

One of the main goals at Mangetti is to tackle human-wildlife conflict. A vital phase in this programme is to record all incidents of conflict and start to identify patterns. As a volunteer, you’ll work with the local community to help to reduce the number of predators persecuted in Namibia.

  • Trap and relocate problem predators
  • Visit local communities, educate local landowners and record any human-wildlife conflicts
  • Provide data showing the movement of problem predators to local land owners

Practical conservation work

As one of the first wildlife conservation projects in northern Namibia, you can help Mangetti set the tone for conservation in the area.

  • Assist in devising and creating new conservation initiatives to minimise human-wildlife conflict
  • Manage the habitats around key monitoring areas

LEARN

As well as gaining all kinds of practical work experience (which you can read about under the ‘do’ tab), you’ll learn about the behaviour, biology and conservation of elephants and African wild dogs.

Conservation

  • The decline of African wild dogs due to habitat fragmentation, persecution and disease – as well as new plans to protect them
  • How to work with locals to tackle human-wildlife conflict
  • Methods used by poachers and the wildlife conservationists who try to stop them

Ecology

  • The varied different habitats of Namibia, comparing the northern bush environment at Mangetti to the semi-desert environment in the south
  • Predator territories, how they’re established and maintained in such a vast environment, and what this means for breeding and feeding
  • African wild dog and predator ecology in arid habitats with limited resources

Biology

  • The differences between bush elephants found in the Mangetti area and desert elephants found further south
  • The biology of ungulates such as oryx, springbok and mountain zebra

Behaviour

  • African wild dog’s breeding and hunting habitats, pack structure and communal care for their young
  • Ungulate behaviour and predator-prey relationships
COSTS

Our costs include:

Accommodation

Internal Flights

Airport Meet & Greet

Transfers

24/7 Support

Personal Guidance

Meals

Cost Calculator

TOTAL COST: £0000

Looking for something bespoke?

You can volunteer at more than one project during your time in Africa. Please contact us for a bespoke quote including travel arrangements between locations.

Payment

Costs are subject to change but will be confirmed in writing at the time of booking.

Chiara Ruggieri Mitchell

I spent two weeks at Mangetti and two at Phinda and it was such an amazing experience! Both taught me so much, including how to use telemetry gear to track animals such as lions and elephants.

As someone who is well-travelled and particularly well-versed in adventure/adrenaline-fuelled activities I found the whole experience truly rewarding, especially as it gave me a chance to give something useful back. My daughter, Sarah, had spent an equally rewarding 3 weeks at Phinda 9 years ago and it was on her recommendation that I ‘followed in her footsteps’ - I’m extremely glad that I did!

What Makes Us Different?

Southern Africa's original conservation travel company

We are qualified zoologists and conservationists

Personal guidance before you book

Join real wildlife conservation projects

Enjoy total peace of mind, with 24/7 in-country support

Empower vital conservation initiatives

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