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This is a 4 week program the first 2 weeks are spent at the nature collage, the last 2 weeks are spent at Umkhondo. After the 4 weeks you will be assessed theoretically and practically by trained staff, and you will be a qualified field guide.


The Nature College is an accredited SASSETA and THETA training provider and CyberTracker & FGASA assessors.

It provides a variety of courses throughout Southern Africa. It operates from its training base (the Aardvark Centre for Nature Studies) on a 3400ha private nature reserve between Ladismith and Riversdale in the Little Karoo.

Johan Fourie (National Nature Guide Level 4, speciality Dangerous Game, Track & Sign Specialist, ETDP, SASSETA & THETA registered Assessor, Moderator and Advanced Trainer) is in charge of the training programme, which is based on his publications "An Introduction to Nature Guiding, The Nature Guide and Animal Alert! – you and the big ones."

He has been training Field Guides in the National Parks and surrounding communities since 1993. The training programme is strengthened by the inputs of its Advisory Panel: Dr Izak Rust (co-author of The Nature Guide), Dr John Almond (co-author of The Nature Guide), Philip Coetzee (author of Birding for Beginners) and JJ Minye (Master Tracker).

Field Guide Courses
(dates on request)

Other Short Courses
(dates on request)

1. FGASA 1 Introductory Field Guide Course

2. Introductory Tracking Course

3. FGASA 1 Introductory Field Guide Course

4. FGASA 1 Introductory Field Guide Course

5. Introductory Tracking Course

1. Full day chemical restraint and darting course
(with or without helicopter)

2. A half day weapon handling course

3. Anti-poaching

4. Tracking


• THE INTRODUCTORY FIELD GUIDE COURSE is run over 15 days in a natural setting at the Aardvark Centre for Nature Studies. The course covers the prescribed theory, and provides extensive practical experience under guidance of the experienced lecturers. Learners will be assessed for the Skills Programme Nature Site Guide: Level 2 on the SAQA Unit Standards 8456 “Conduct a Limited Guided Nature Experience” (Cr20) and 8478 “Create a Guided Experience for Customers”(Cr20).

• THE NQF 4 BIOME GUIDE COURSE is also conducted at the Aardvark Centre for Nature Studies over a period of 12 days. This course is primarily aimed at the Field Guide wanting Level 4 certification and covers all the required theory, with comprehensive practical sessions under guidance of expert instructors. It meets the requirements of the Skills Programme Nature Site Guide: Level 4, consisting of the SAQA Unit Standards Conduct a guided nature experience (335799); Care for customers (246740); Conduct a tourist guiding activity (335801); Minimise and manage safety and emergency incidents (255914); Conduct a guided biome experience (335815). Five biomes will be covered in the course (Fynbos, Succulent & Nama Karoo, Grassland & Savanna).

• INTRODUCTORY TRACKER TRAINING is done under supervision of accredited expert trackers. The programme is based on a 7-day learning experience, where learners will stay at the Aardvark Centre for nature Studies in our reserve area. Training is focused on the following aspects:
Fundamental techniques of tracking; Recognition of animal signs & identification of animal tracks; Interpreting animal behaviour from tracks and signs; Systematic tracking
The course content is aimed at the Skills programme Nature Site Guide: L2/L4 and assessment techniques meet the requirements of the SAQA Unit Standards 8460 (Cr40), 8518 (Cr50) and 8530 (Cr60) (Track Animals and Identify Spoor Using Easily Recognisable, Moderately Difficult and Difficult Spoor). Learners are assessed during the training period.

Tel: + 27 (0)82 923 88 55
Email: Click Here
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