Our Field Rangers
All our field rangers have a vast knowledge of the reserve and its animals. They facilitate all the field work for our volunteer programs at Siyafunda, and also guide at My Kaya, Your Kaya lodge. Their work has them involved in the daily research and monitoring of animals, birds and the bush, your time spent with them is guaranteed to be fun and full of learning.
Mike is the Director of Siyafunda Wildlife and Conservation, he is a qualified FGASA guide and Lead Trails-guide, with a level 3 Tracker. He has an under-grad degree in Social Science and a Masters in Business Administration.
Mike's role with Siyafunda is to over see all operations of our projects and lodge.
After university, Mike spent a couple of years working in the UK. However, the call of the bush was too strong, so he returned to South Africa where once qualifying as a field guide, he worked as assistant manager & guide in the Madikwe Game Reserve. Thereafter, Mike moved to his family farm (Twines) in Makalali Nature Reserve & began working for Siyafunda in his present role.
Emma is the manager at the Siyafunda volunteer projects and over sees all the research and monitoring projects. Emma is a qualified FGASA guide and Lead Trails-guide, with a level 2 Tracker.
If you have any Makalali animal questions, Emma is the person who has the answer and some. She is one of the reserves most experienced Field Rangers and invaluable to the management of the reserve.
Sam is the Senior Field ranger at Siyafunda's main research camp and senior guide at My Kaya, Your Kaya lodge. Sam is a qualified FGASA guide and Lead Trails-guide.
Sam's bush knowledge is exceptional and his retention of facts and figures is remarkable, being on drive or walk with him is a must for all visitors. Our FGASA interns are lucky to have him mentoring them through their course.
Derek is the Senior Field ranger at Siyafunda's Endangered Species. Derek is a qualified FGASA guide and Lead Trails-guide, with a level 2 Tracker and level 3 Track and Sign.
He has exceptional bush instincts and tracking abilities. Derek is happiest while out on foot tracking down Africa's Big 5 and other endangered species.
Kayla is a Field ranger at Siyafunda's main research camp and guide at My Kaya, Your Kaya lodge. She is a qualified FGASA guide and Apprentice Trails-guide, with a level 1 Tracker and level 2 Track and Sign.
Coming from South Africa she has an affinity with the bush and the animals that roam our country. Her passion for our animals is infectious. When she is not working at Siyafunda she is learning to fly helicopters.
Monica has been with Siyafunda since it started in 2004. She looks after the housekeeping at our Main Volunteer camp.
Zondy has been with Siyafunda since 2015. He spends most of his mornings looking after our Endangered Species camp. In the afternoons he is at Main camp looking after the garden and surrounds..
Judas does all our maintenance and he is often see all over the place also looking after our Jobs Halt camp. Judas is Zondy's brother has been with us since 2008
Ripson has worked with us for many years and has been at our Endangered Species camp but now looks after our Job's halt camp
Our Intern Rangers
We are very lucky to work closely with Bush Wise Field Guide Training and host their students for their 6 month work experience www.bushwise.co.za.
We also mentor interns through our Field guide mentor-ship program and they also form part of our Field Ranger Team.
Elandri Du Plessis
Elandri has just joined us from Bushwise Guide Training school, she has qualified as a level 1 guide with her level 3 Track & Sign. She has also passed her Advanced Rifle Handling assesment. She will be spending the next few months doing work experience.
Jelle is from the Netherlands but speaks with an Irish accent so it is a bit confusing. He has completed his Bush Wise Field Guide Course and has done his Track & Sign course and Trails Guide exams. He is doing his 6 months work experience with us.
Mfundo is studying his Nature Conservation Diploma through the University of Tshwane and will be completing his 6 months work experience and practical assignments with us from January to July 2020.
Charlotte will be doing her Field guide mentor-ship program with us from January to July 2020.