Sifundo’s Impactful Guide-Exchange Adventure

Wilderness was proud to participate in an impactful guide exchange with BirdLife South Africa. Wilderness raised sufficient funds from their Birding Big Day in 2022 to host a guide from BirdLife South Africa on their recent guides’ course in the Linyanti Wildlife Reserve.

Sifundo Gumbi from Richard’s Bay, who joined Birdlife South Africa in 2002 as a guide, travelled to Botswana to join the Wilderness guides’ course. He was very excited to improve his guiding skills and gain exposure to a new region. He was also interested to learn how other guides operate.

Sifundo arrived on 6 February and returned home on 5 March. He spent four thrilling weeks with our team in Botswana, visiting all the Linyanti Wildlife Reserve Camps.

He attended the interactive training sessions, which helped reignite all the guides’ passion and sharpen their skills. Highlights included “African night skies” star gazing and storytelling, guiding techniques, bush walks and tracking, medicinal plants and so much more.

Sifundo was in awe and found learning about star gazing incredible. He is excited to share his new knowledge with his guests when out at night searching for owls and nightjars.

Sifundo had the experience of a lifetime. “The Wilderness hospitality was amazing. The training team – Vasco, Cilas and Ona – was very informative, not forgetting Benson and Chabaya, who introduced me to a new skill – star gazing. I was excited to see 47 new bird species – but not only birds, I also saw my first leopard, wild dogs, hyenas and also my first boabab tree. Thank you so much to the Wilderness team for this opportunity, I will cherish this experience for years to come”.