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Peterhouse Boys

Learner Guides Trip to Gonarezhou 2018

Our Learner Guides group have just spent six nights in Gonarezhou National Park which was an interesting experience. Peterhouse parents who work there gave us an insight into the work done by the Frankfurt Zoological Society together with National Parks.

Our professional guide was Andy Smith and under his licence we were able to walk in the park which is a special privilege. Pupils climbed up an elephant trail to the view point on the cliffs and met some elephants on the way.

There are good raptors in the area and it is a very different view when one is above the eagles, vultures and storks looking down on them from the top of the cliffs. The vegetation was very thick in some areas after the good rainy season and the rivers quite high which made for some interesting crossings.

We got stuck in the river with the trailer going in but were rescued by one of our past pupils, Dylan Browne who is working as an apprentice in the park and spent time with us.

Birding was excellent and we recorded over 100 different species with particularly good opportunities for identification at the pans.

Sadly no cats this time although we did look at tracks and saw plenty of game especially in the Northern section of the park. We approached a big herd of buffalo and watched them which was an amazing experience.
We managed to watch a full moon rise over the river and later in the trip sat in the river bed looking at the most spectacular night sky with no light pollution.

Gonarezhou has a beauty all of its own – it is wild and rugged with not too many tourists. A special thank you to Andy Smith for accompanying the pupils and sharing his knowledge with us.

Mrs Penny Raynor
i/c Conservation