Hoedspruit Endangered Species Center
Orphaned animals are brought to Hoedspruit in an attempt to save their lives and to preserve a decreasing species. Protected from poachers and allowed to roam on about 13000 hectares, big cats, elephant, rhino and buffalo are among the mammals that are becoming endangered in South Africa. In addition, over 350 bird species have sought refuge within the confines of this area.
King Cheetahs The King Cheetah is a prime example of a mammal that is quickly fading from sight. Discovered in 1926 as a distinct variation of the spotted cheetah, it is quite rare to spot one of these magnificent animals in the wild. King Cheetahs have large splotchy spots and a noticeable double line running down their spine. Mainly passive animals, they rarely fight predators and will give up a meal rather than fight for it. Scientists feel that this is why the decrease in population.
Under the supervision of Hoedspruit Endangered Species Center, this amazing cat is given the opportunity to breed and populate. A Park within a Park Located within Kruger National Park that borders the east edge of Mozambique,
Hoedspruit is a volunteer organization that was started in 1990. Lente Roode began the centre out of her passion of cheetahs. Before long, sick and abandoned animals were showing up and the population began to grow. Since then, the HESC has evolved into one of the most leading private research and breeding facilities for endangered species in the country.
Volunteer Learning Facility
Student programs are offered for a hands-on experience in dealing with the animals, plus modern research into breeds of extinction. A basic conservation course, followed by exercises of feeding and care prepare students for the 1 to 3 week program of interacting with the wildlife. Recently, volunteers were able to witness the birth of 4 baby cheetahs, showing how a speciesis able to thrive once again.
Public is Always Welcome Since day one, the public has been invited to visit the facilities and expand their knowledge on the importance of keeping certain breeds from extinction. A Standard Tour starts with a movie presentation of the project, followed by a close-up look at the contained animals.
The Private Tour adds wild dog feeding and vulture feeding as an experience. A Game Drive is the ultimate in traveling throughout the area and watching as all of the species are presented in their natural habitat. The Endangered Species Center is an excellent way to see breeds that would otherwise not be witnessed.
Whether you are a lover of animals, birds or nature, this is an adventure that will not soon forgotten.