If you are looking for a hands-on Africa vet experience and need to fulfill a portion of your Extra Mural Study (EMS) requirements, Vets Go Wild have the perfect animal care courses for you, featuring the opportunity to work with vets in South Africa.
Our 16-day Vets Go Wild module is aimed at students undertaking veterinary and wildlife based programmes at university, providing training in the care of animals at Amakhala Game Reserve and The Addo Elephant National Park both located in the Eastern Cape in South Africa. Animals that you are likely to be working hands on with include Rhino, African Buffalo, Big Cats, Cheetah, Giraffe and more.
Enquire about our new 12-day Vets Go Wild Impact module!
All 2017 courses are fully booked.
Vets Go Wild 2018 dates:
- 14 – 29 June 2018, 16 days
- 30 June – 15 July 2018, 16 days
- 26 July – 10 August 2018, 16 days
Vets Go Wild IMPACT 2018 dates:
- 20 – 31 August 2018, 12 days
Spread the word
For 2018 to be as successful as this year’s Vets Go Wild and for all courses to go ahead we need your to help spread the word on this experience and get others to sign up and book, each course will only go ahead with a minimum of 13 pax.
Please can you let your tutors know about this experience share the news on your facebook page and if you require any VGW posters to put up around your university please do not hesitate to ask.
Call our friendly team today on +44 (0) 1483 860560
or email firstname.lastname@example.org or click here to apply!
The objective of the Vets Go Wild courses on the programme are to conduct theoretical and practical training focusing on the role of veterinary science in the context of African wildlife conservation & utilisation. This means your animal care training will combine the disciplines of Veterinary Science, Wildlife Management and Conservation Field Training.
The Vets Go Wild programme was established over 9 years ago and we are currently on our 9th year of hosting veterinary students from across the UK and further afield. The programme is facilitated by Dr William Fowlds.
Our animal care courses for Veterinary Students operate at the following wildlife reserves:
Amakhala Private Game Reserve
Amakhala consists of 6500 hectares (15,600 acres) of wildlife reserve in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. Vet Students will enjoy this scenically beautiful area of green, wide-open plains, lined with acacia-savannah. It is home to wide variety of animals including elephants and giraffes, which you may get to treat as part of your animal care training.
Addo National Elephant Park
A mere 30 minutes drive from Amakhala is The Addo National Elephant Park. The 120,000 hectare (260,000 acres) conservation area is famous for its elephants but is fast becoming recognised as one of the most ecologically diverse national parks in the world. There are over 400 elephants here which ourVets Go Wild courses may tend to during your two-week experience.
The Vets Go Wild programme also deals with marine animal care; training students by letting them assist the South Africa vets at the Bayworld Oceanarium, located in Port Elizabeth, an hours drive from Amakhala.
Due to the busy nature of our animal courses free time is minimal. The evenings are spent at leisure and course participants are welcomed to enjoy the tranquillity of the Lodges communal areas.
As well as incorporating Addo, Shamwari and Amakhala, where the Africa Vet courses operate, The Eastern Cape is justifiably famous for a number of other game reserves. The great herds of Knysna Forest elephants were almost totally eradicated at the turn of this century but have recovered miraculously in recent years.
Addo National Park and the Mountain Zebra Park saw almost exactly the same thing happen to the rare mountain zebra. Shot to the brink of extinction in the 1930s, this rare species struggled to come back. Today, there are over 200 in the park thanks to conservation efforts and animal courses similar to ours. Mountain Zebra Park is about 2 and half hours from Amakhala just outside Cradock in the Little Karoo.
Student Africa vets will stay in our camp, situated in one of the protected areas that make up Amakhala Game Reserve. The camp is a traditional lodge, which boasts comfortable rooms, en-suite shower facilities, a private swimming pool, and separate dining and bar areas.
The lodge consists of separate units set into the surrounding vegetation:
Social area – lounge & bar, balcony looking over the protected area, outdoor barbeque facilities, fireside area.
Accommodation units sleeping up to six with en-suite bath or shower, toilet and basin.
Dining and kitchen unit.
Swimming pool area.
Office and lecture facility for the Vets Go Wild animal care training, which backs onto one of the accommodation units
Due to practical arrangements surrounding animals, the course content and order may vary.
Arrivals and transfers to Amakhala Game Reserve
Orientation of Camp & its facilities
Africa Vet Course overview
Guided game drive
Day 2 – Amakhala
Morning game walk
Lectures: Basic wildlife conservation principles for Africa Vets
Introduction to practical conservation management.
Re-introductions and sustainable utilisation.
Afternoon game drive
Day 3 – Amakhala
Lectures: Relationships between animals & habitat management.
An overview of the Africa Vet role in conservation.
Equipment & drugs relevant to veterinary wildlife.
Practical on darting and darting practise.
Evening into night drive
Day 4 – Amakhala & Surrounding Reserves
Practical demonstration from an African vet of capture techniques used in antelope
Overview of reserve management structures and principles in other conservation areas.
Transfer to Camp
Day 5 – Amakhala & Surrounding Reserves
Visit to the born free centre.
Talk on role of the foundation in the rescue and care of African wildlife
Tour around the Vets Go Wild centre and facilities.
Discussion on health & welfare issues associated with captive conditions.
Game Drive focused on predator management in the wild.
Transfer to Camp
Day 6 – Amakhala & Surrounding Reserves
Game drive on Amakhala
Focus on specific species & management issues.
Mega herbivore and predator issues in management.
Transfer to Camp
Day 7 – Amakhala
Game drive & practical darting procedure.
Lectures: Africa veterinary pharmacology and case study examples
Basic capture techniques
Technology in conservation.
Practical diurnal telemetry tracking on Amakhala
Day 8 – Addo National Elephant Park
Transfer to Addo
Overview of park management and policies
Different approaches of national parks compared to private game reserves.
Visit to animal holding bomas and discussion
Transfer to Camp
Day 9 – Amakhala
Early morning canoeing/river cruise on Bushmans River
Lectures: Diseases relevant to African wildlife
The role of parasites & disease in nature.
The monitoring and control of disease
Vaccination procedures for Africa vets or disease testing practical
Day 10 – Amakhala
Lectures: Protected area systems & economics.
Alternative ways to utilize wildlife.
Biodiversity issues and extinction processes.
Night drive: telemetry on nocturnal species
Day 11 – Marine & coastal management
Transfer to Port Elizabeth
Visit to Port Elizabeth Oceanarium
Practical blood sampling and dissection of marine mammals
Marine excursion into Algoa Bay and Addo marine reserve.
Day 12 – Surrounding reserves
A comparative look at different conservation models and ecosystems.
Exercise in adaptive management plans for predators.
Practical excursion involving procedures on challenging wildlife species
Day 13 – Amakhala
Relocation and holding of animals
Stress factors in handling and containment
Drugs and facilities Africa vets use to reduce stress
Pathology of stress related mortalities
Day 14 – Amakhala & surrounds
Socio-economic issues to consider in conservation of African ecosystems.
Participation in Africa veterinary wildlife called outs to take place at random times during the course
Day 15 – Amakhala
Summary and key issue analysis
Game drive on AGR for field discussion
Appropriate capture techniques
Drug combinations and dosages
Vets Go Wild Course written examination
Sundowners on Amakhala
Vets Go Wild Course farewell dinner.
Departures & transfers to Port Elizabeth
|No. of Weeks||Price|
|16 Days – 2015||£2,712.00|
|Vets Go Wild
A £400.00 deposit is required for this experience
Need a quote on your airfare to our Vets Go Wild! placement? Please ask a member of the team for our latest prices and special offers.
“As a veterinary nurse I was lucky to get a position on the course first of all but I ‘m so glad I did. All the things we did and learn has made me want to return again which I hope to do next year. Can’t fault the hands on experience and got to do so much I didn’t want to leave.”
Evie Stickland – 2016
University of Edinburgh
Becki Coverdale – 2016
“I wasn’t really sure what I was expecting from the course, but I’ve ended up having the best 16 days of my life. Getting so close to the stunning wildlife in this country, and gaining hands-on experience with species I’d never have imagined, is something I’ll never forget. Everyone helping with the course is so welcoming and knowledgeable. I would recommend this course to anyone.”
Rachel Cummins – 2016
University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine
“I made my reservation later and everyone was very helpful. I got quick responses with good information. This program was amazing! The lectures go hand in hand with all the hands on experience. I loved all of the procedures.”
Kerry Voice – 2016
University of Edinburgh
“This trip was absolutely fantastic and I had the most amazing time. Wouldn’t change a thing and would do it all again in a heartbeat.”
Vanessa Nokes – 2016
University of Edinburgh
“The course surpassed my expectations for how hands on we got and how much responsibility we were given”
Anjali Naik – 2016
University of Liverpool
“Amazing experience, brilliant hands on work. Would love to come again!”
“The time I spent in South Africa at Vets Go Wild was the best two weeks of my life. I learnt so much and made some special friends. It is an experience I will never forget and a place that I know I will visit again.”
The Queen’s Veterinary School Hospital University of Cambridge endorsement
Re: Vets go Wild by Worldwide Experience.
“For the last 7 years, I have organised groups of Cambridge University clinical veterinary students to go on one of the Vets go Wild courses. These are so professionally run that in my opinion they are second to none. As quoted on the website the course genuinely gives a ‘unique and life changing experience’. Our students stretch themselves in their academic knowledge but also have an incredible opportunity to have ‘hands-on’ exposure with wild animals in their natural surroundings, gaining clinical experience which is unmatched anywhere else.
The Course is officially recognised as Extra Mural Study by the University and counts towards the students’ compulsory 26 weeks in this regard.
I recommend this course wholeheartedly, without any reservations.
If can help more in anyway at all please do not hesitate to contact me.”
Dr Nicola Holdstock
BA., MA., Vet.MB., Cert.EM.(Stud Med), LVI., FHEA., PhD., Dipl.ECEIM., MRCVS
European Specialist in Equine Internal Medicine & RCVS Specialist in Equine Stud Medicine