1/1
 

CONSERVATION

Our Founding Promise

Founded as a conservation initiative 45 years ago, Greater Kuduland strives to fulfill its founding promise of adhering to an incredibly strict code of ethics when it comes to the conservation and well-being of the Reserve's animals and their habitat to ensure that future generations will one day be able to witness the wonders of the African bush. 

 

Over 90% of Greater Kuduland's tourism revenue goes back into conservation initiatives to protect the wildlife, the environment, and the cultural heritage of the land. These efforts led to Greater Kuduland being the very first private game reserve in South Africa to introduce elephants in 1991, since which the herd has almost quadrupled in size. Up until a few years ago when the Kruger National Park managed to expand its herds, Kuduland had the largest breeding herd of roan antelope in the country. We were also the first reserve to introduce disease-free buffalo into the area in 1975. Presently, we are one of the only reserves in the country that is home to both black and white rhino. These are just a few of our advances along the way to our goal to prevent the further decline of endangered animals. 

 

WILDLIFE CONSERVATION

The Middle Stone Ages - The "Bushmen" Period


With the help of the of one of the most ancient art galleries in the world, the rock paintings found in the hills on the reserve give us a glimpse of the inner workings of the Bushmen (San) people that inhabited the area in the Middle Stone Age, over 70 000 years ago. These paintings are by far the oldest form of art and tell stories of their hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Other treasures discovered include tools, pottery, and weapons. Old versions of a chess game can be found carved in to a lot of the rocks in the same area. Sadly, only an estimated 100 000 San people remain living in Southern Africa. These historial sites are protect by the Conservancy and we do not allow anyone to touch the items on site.




The Iron Age - The "Chifumbaze" Period


Pioneers from India and China came down to start gold and ivory trade routes to Asia. They brought with them livestock and crop farms and before long began integrating with the local African's and formed a colony, informally known as the Chifumbaze. There is much mystery around this period, and it is not known for certain which tribes formed part of the Chifumbaze. One of the most beautiful reminders of this period are the ruins of an ancient fortress built on top of one of the hills on the reserve. The ruins have a 360-degree uninterrupted view of the land below and would have served as the perfect look-out point for raiders and any other threats. Constructed without mortar, it is a miracle that parts of this archaeological treasure remain today.




The 19th Century - The Dutch "Voortrekkers"


The arrival of the Voortrekkers in the early nineteenth century brought profound changes to the region. Their route roughly followed that of the N1 today and brought about the founding of the towns now called Bela-Bela, Modimolle, and Polokwane, among others. The Voortrekkers who ventured this far north were determined and hardened people, making it through obstacles such as tribal wars, tropical diseases including Tick-Bite Fever and Malaria, and surviving radicle heatwaves with little or no water on their journey north. A few of the Voortrekkers must have crossed through the area as remains of some of the houses and their graves can be seen on the reserve. As with all the history that we have managed to salvage on the reserve, we protect what has been entrusted to us by preventing further human damage and ensuring the stories that the finding carry are told.





The Battle for Wildlife Preservation Through Focused Efforts 

 

ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION 

We conduct a large amount of research on non-game species to better understand our role in maintaining a healthy ecosystem.

Studies on biodiversity include the analysis of the flora, insects, and small mammals and birds, and are administered to help us better understand what is needed for our wildlife populations thrive. We then apply this research through closely monitored programs to eliminate environmental threats such as invasive species, erosion, contaminated water, and pollution. 

Protecting our Environment

Carbon Footprint


Greater Kuduland has taken significant steps toward waste management policies, such as restricting the use of all water bottles and straws on the Reserve. Whatever is not recycled at this point is burnt rather than buried. By 2021 we aim for all disposable appliances to be reused or recycled. There is a zero-tolerance for pollution and anyone caught littering on the Reserve will be prosecuted. Parts of the establishmenet are already run on solar power, and we aim to implement other green energy stratergies over the next few years to power the Reserve.




Non - Game Species and Birds


This specific line of research was encouraged when we noticed how butterflies and rare wildflowers benefited after moving some of our grazing herds to a separate encampment during a drought in 1984. There were some instances when new bird species migrated to the area for the fresh vegetation, despite the lack of water. Since then, we have initiated many projects aimed at creating a sustainable environment for our non-game species, including improving bank-side vegetation on the Madimahuru dam to encourage ducks and other water animals into the area. We also looked into the drainage on the marshlands to help preserve the tributaries to encourage frogs, insects, and other wetland species to the vicinity during the rainy season.





 

The Middle Stone Ages - The "Bushmen" Period


With the help of the of one of the most ancient art galleries in the world, the rock paintings found in the hills on the reserve give us a glimpse of the inner workings of the Bushmen (San) people that inhabited the area in the Middle Stone Age, over 70 000 years ago. These paintings are by far the oldest form of art and tell stories of their hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Other treasures discovered include tools, pottery, and weapons. Old versions of a chess game can be found carved in to a lot of the rocks in the same area. Sadly, only an estimated 100 000 San people remain living in Southern Africa. These historial sites are protect by the Conservancy and we do not allow anyone to touch the items on site.




The Iron Age - The "Chifumbaze" Period


Pioneers from India and China came down to start gold and ivory trade routes to Asia. They brought with them livestock and crop farms and before long began integrating with the local African's and formed a colony, informally known as the Chifumbaze. There is much mystery around this period, and it is not known for certain which tribes formed part of the Chifumbaze. One of the most beautiful reminders of this period are the ruins of an ancient fortress built on top of one of the hills on the reserve. The ruins have a 360-degree uninterrupted view of the land below and would have served as the perfect look-out point for raiders and any other threats. Constructed without mortar, it is a miracle that parts of this archaeological treasure remain today.




The 19th Century - The Dutch "Voortrekkers"


The arrival of the Voortrekkers in the early nineteenth century brought profound changes to the region. Their route roughly followed that of the N1 today and brought about the founding of the towns now called Bela-Bela, Modimolle, and Polokwane, among others. The Voortrekkers who ventured this far north were determined and hardened people, making it through obstacles such as tribal wars, tropical diseases including Tick-Bite Fever and Malaria, and surviving radicle heatwaves with little or no water on their journey north. A few of the Voortrekkers must have crossed through the area as remains of some of the houses and their graves can be seen on the reserve. As with all the history that we have managed to salvage on the reserve, we protect what has been entrusted to us by preventing further human damage and ensuring the stories that the finding carry are told.





CULTURAL CONSERVATION 

In Honour Our Fathers Who Walked the Land Before Us

We are very proud of the Reserve’s ancient roots and do our best to guard its heritage. A recent study done by the University of Pretoria discovered archaeological findings that prove the first human inhabitants on the Reserve date back to the Middle Stone Age.

 

We go to great lengths to protect the land’s history as it serves to remind us that we too are just visitors on this earth.

 Greater Kuduland Safaris, Limpopo, South Africa

safaris@greaterkudulandsafaris.com 

+27 15 539 0720

2019. Photography by Níall Beddy and GreenGraf Photography

Website by Tessa Howes. All Rights Reserved.