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Why a Field Guide Will Make Your Safari Experience Better

Although it can be super rewarding to find animals on your own, going on a safari with a qualified field guide will enhance your experience!

Male lion spotted at Black Rhino Reserve

Although many believe that game rangers and field guides are one and the same thing, they are in fact not. A game ranger is directly responsible for the protection of wildlife and the maintenance and well-being of parks and reserves.

Young male lion tinged by Alberto from Matimba Bush Lodge

The difference between game rangers and field guides

Game rangers can, but are usually not employed to take guests out and educate people on animals, etc. In other words, they are not directly responsible for tourism as such, but rather for the upkeep and safety of wildlife.

Why Going on Safari With a Field Guide Will Enhance Your Experience
Southern white-faced owl tinged in the Pilanesberg by Jann-Rick from Tshukudu Lodge

Field guides, on the other hand, can also be involved with the maintenance and well-being of wildlife, however, they are more-so directly involved with guests and the education of wildlife to guests. Guests may include tourists, as well as locals.

Why Going on Safari With a Field Guide Will Enhance Your Experience
Leopard seen in Kruger National Park – Photographed by Gerrie from Kruger Gateway Safaris

Most of our guides also make use of the Latest Sightings App to ting and so can you!

To become a qualified and registered field guide, one has to go through quite immense training and studies. Broad spectrums such as astronomy, ecology, and tracking – to name a mere few – are covered and exams have to be strictly passed and assessed – both theoretically and practically. On top of that registered field guides also have to have a professional driving permit to legally drive guests around for the purpose of tourism.

4 cheetah tinged on the H9 – Renata from Kedibone Safaris

Of course, field guides are absolute wildlife fanatics. Their passion for the bush is utterly contagious and they do what they do, because not only do they love nature – but the existence and future thereof truly matters to them.

Why Going on Safari With a Field Guide Will Enhance Your Experience
Lion cubs tinged by Forgive from Muzi Safaris

We have a few guides that ting frequently on the Latest Sightings app and WhatsApp groups. Should you be interested in booking a safari with one of these incredible guides, feel free to look them up by following these links and request them by name:

Book a safari with a guide in the Kruger National Park:

Why a Field Guide Will Make Your Safari Experience Better
Close encounter with an elephant at Mjejane Private Game Reserve

Book a safari with a guide in Pilanesberg Game Reserve:

Giraffe at sunset Tinged by Tarryn Rae Mankwe GAMETRACKERS

“As a field guide, you have a lot of intel about the animals.”

Going on a self-drive safari is of course a wonderful experience, as one does not have a time limit and only has to consider oneself in terms of what you would like to see. That being said, field guides often have inside information as to where the best spots may be to see animals – as field guides communicate with one another via radio, apps, etc. They know their areas of operation very well and are familiar with the different dynamics of animals found in that area.

Why Going on Safari With a Field Guide Will Enhance Your Experience
Baby elephant photographed by Christelle from Capture Nature Kruger Safaris

From their studies and training, guides also build and grow their knowledge extensively – as the bush is their television and they get to observe it on a daily basis! The beauty about their job and office is that no day is the same. There’ll always be something new to see, explore, observe, hear – just experience!

Why a Field Guide Will Make Your Safari Experience Better
4 male lions from Shishangeni pride tinged by Jean from Discover Kruger Safaris

Going on a safari with a field guide can truly enhance your experience tremendously, as they have so much knowledge and experience to share.

Beautiful leopard in Pilanesberg Tinged by Heinrich Neumeyer

Next time you are lucky enough to go on a guided safari, ask them as many questions as possible! Ask them about their sightings and stories. They really do love sharing their passion and experience with people. These conservationists do a fantastic job and we salute them for sacrificing so much, to ensure that humanity understands the importance of Mother Nature.

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