NJ MORE Field Guide College Blog

Conservation

Conservation Adventures Out In The Field

Conservation | 13th Mar 2019

It was with eager anticipation that all 15 NJ MORE students gathered early on a Wednesday morning for their Conservation Management practical module, which involved two days in the field with the Marataba Conservation team (MPCo). As the 25,000ha Marataba section of the Marakele National Park is privately owned and managed, it is the responsibility …
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MORE Lodges and Hotels

Learning all About The MORE Lodges And Hotels With Dan Hartman

Marataba South Africa | 19th Feb 2019

Field Guide Dan Hartman recently joined the Marataba team after completing his training at the lodge. Here he speaks about what his training taught him: When deciding which field guide college to attend, I chose NJ MORE because of the rapid growth of the company, as well as the overall model that each of the …
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Field Guide

The Rocky Road To Becoming A Field Guide

Field Guide Student | 1st Feb 2019

On a hot and sunny afternoon, all 15 NJ More Field Guide College students headed into the Marakele National Park for some four-wheel drive training, accompanied by their two experienced trainers, Ben and Stohm. With the group consisting of a real cross-section of ages, nationalities and backgrounds, there were a few confident souls who had previous …
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NJ MORE

Living The Life Of An NJ MORE Field Guide Student

Field Guide Student | 19th Oct 2018

I started out at the NJ MORE Field Guide college in the June-December intake of 2017 with high hopes and big dreams. I didn’t have any idea of what was in store, and it turned out to nothing as I expected. My college time gave me some of the most memorable months of my life. Just …
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Tracking my own progress

Tracking My Own Progress with NJ MORE Field Guide College

Uncategorised | 5th Oct 2018

An opportunity to be sponsored for the NJ MORE Field Guide College intake was advertised on the noticeboard at Tinga Lodge. I applied and after the selection process, I was chosen to be a participant. I was beyond excited, I could finally follow my dream of becoming a field guide. As a tracker, I always …
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Guiding future guides

Guiding Future Guides – NJ MORE Field Guide College

Field Guide Student | 28th Sep 2018

As a broad and in-depth subject, guiding is as beautiful as it is tough. Seen from an outside point of view, it may seem simple and easy. I think most guides will say that it is easy because it’s a passion that we as people develop; to inform the public and enhance their experience. Although …
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Leopards

Leopards, Leopards And More Leopards

Field Guide Student | 20th Sep 2018

My journey at MORE started this past January when I was selected to attend as one of the 8 career guides at the NJ More Field Guide College in Marataba. The last 8 months have flown by in a blur of learning, new experiences, friendships and feeding an existing but always-hungry passion for the bush. …
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The Hippo King

The Hippo – King of African waters

Wildlife | 5th Sep 2018

Hippos are very large amphibious mammals, found in the southern half of the African continent. They were originally native to everywhere south of the Sahara, but are now mostly living in parks and reserves. The hippopotamus amphibious, as it is known taxonomically, is in the Hippopotamidae Family. Hippos are large creatures with some males weighing …
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Facebook Posts

NJ MORE Field Guide College student Jasmin Stäheli managed to capture this beautiful picture of two hippos surfacing at Fish Eagle Dam at just the right moment.

The Field Guides Association of Southern Africa
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You'll often see Kudu out on the reserve, but it's always a special treat when a Gemsbok makes an appearance, as it is one of the rarer antelope species we see at Marataba

The Field Guides Association of Southern Africa
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Enjoy the freedom of the bush and gain invaluable knowledge of the natural world with our 60-Day Apprentice Field Guide Course. We're offering 20% off our July intake to the first 4 people who apply, so book your spot now! T&Cs apply. The course starts on the 10th of July.
Email francois@more.co.za to make a booking.

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Nothing quite compares to an orange-hued African sunset...

📸 : Field Guide Student Jasmin Stäheli

The Field Guides Association of Southern Africa
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A letter to the editor of the Sunday Times ZA, by Robert More.

"There is a limit. A limit to how long businesses that have had no revenue and people who have had no income for 80 days of lockdown can survive.

That statement, made by President Cyril Ramaphosa last week announcing adjustments to the Level 3 lockdown, brought a small, but short-lived sigh of relief from the Tourism Sector; hope that sense would prevail and amended regulations would pave the way for a meaningful reopening so that businesses and jobs could be saved.

This pandemic, which has seen a global health and economic crisis of ever-increasing proportion, has hit Tourism especially hard. One of the first economic sectors, and certainly the one earmarked for reopening last, the Tourism Sector was affected long before the 27 March lockdown date was announced.

Feeling that pain with us have been the communities, associated sectors and informal businesses who rely on an active Tourism Sector for their livelihoods.

At present, the Level 3 regulations allow hotels, lodges, B&Bs, timeshare facilities, resorts and guest houses to host business travellers and remaining tourists, as well as provide accommodation for quarantine and isolation purposes. Travel for leisure purposes has not been allowed explicitly, whether that is across provincial borders or not.

On paper, the accommodation sector seems open, albeit for certain categories of guests only. In reality, many accommodation establishments only serve leisure markets, or a mix of leisure and business. Their survival depends on leisure tourism reopening, and while the gradual reopening of domestic business travel, including inter-provincial business travel, is welcome, it alone will not sustain the thousands of small and large accommodation providers whose businesses are inextricably linked to leisure tourism.

Statistics South Africa indicates that as much as 90% of the domestic accommodation market is leisure, and that 60% of all domestic overnight trips are across provincial borders – in the case of Gauteng, that percentage is higher, 70%. Many accommodation businesses in surrounding provinces rely entirely on Gauteng’s outbound domestic leisure business.

We have seen extraordinary inconsistencies in the gradual reopening of South Africa’s economy. The welcome further relaxing of restrictions on accommodation establishments, as announced by President Ramaphosa, will be well and truly meaningless – yet another inconsistency – if domestic leisure tourists are still barred from travelling, inter-provincial travel remains in lockdown and businesses are unable to trade due to lack of demand.

Travel is happening. Whether it is across provincial borders for business, for study, for funerals or to care for vulnerable family members. These travellers can travel safely because of the stringent health and safety protocols that have been put in place by the tourism and hospitality sector to curb the spread of the pandemic, for all travel. And if these can travel safely, why can’t leisure travellers?

We remain hopeful that, as our regulations are being drafted, our pledge to safeguard our guests and staff through these robust health and safety protocols and the nature of how our Tourism Sector operates will ensure the President’s encouraging announcement will result in the meaningful easing our industry needs right now to survive.

Yours in Tourism,
Robert More
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