Category Archives: Uncategorized


Ten years ago, Great Plains Conservation, phased out the use of plastic water bottles for guests and replaced these with aluminium canteens. On arrival at their lodges, each guest is given an aluminium canteen with fresh, cold water. When empty, canisters are washed, sterilised and re-used. Guests love this initiative and continually compliment the staff on these environmentally-friendly efforts.


GPC are now further reducing their reliance on plastics and strengthening their positive impact on the environment by no longer purchasing or using plastic straws in any of their Botswana camps.

They recently started an initiative in the Tsutsubega community, which is located in the Okavango Delta about 25 kilometres northwest of Maun, as well as another in the Chobe enclave. Here ladies from the community sustainably collect Letaka reeds and turn them into drinking straws as a zero plastic waste initiative. The reeds are stripped, cut to length, the inside cleaned out and the ends are sandpapered to provide a smooth finish.

Each straw takes several minutes to makeand is labour intensive, but the initiative revolutionises the throw-away straw industry!

Trans Africa Safaris applauds these efforts and similar ones such as Kenya’s banning of plastic bags last year.


Trans Africa Safaris celebrates its 100th anniversary

This year Trans Africa Safaris celebrates its 100th anniversary and to recognize this milestone, we have produced a new brochure, a commemorative calendar, a book documenting the company’s history and we have two wonderful agent educational trips. Plus a few other surprises to be revealed during the course of the year …

The company was started in Cape Town in 1918 by two survivors of the battle of Delville Wood in France during World War 1. In 1954, the late Brian Paterson began his career with

Trans Africa Safaris. Upon his passing in 1993, Jennifer Paterson, together with sisters, Beverley and Lesley, brother-in-law, André Botha, son, Michael, and a committed team, have built the business into one of the most highly-regarded boutique inbound operations on the continent.

Click HERE to view our new brochure.

Trans Africa Safaris visit Uthando

Trans Africa Safaris visit to view their investment
The official launch of the first fully installed and painted PingOut table tennis table coincided with a visit by the Trans Africa Safaris (TAS) team to visit the Siyazingisa School in Gugulethu and see firsthand the impact that the table is already having at the school. Andre Botha stated, “TAS firmly believes that arts and sports provide the children with wonderful avenues of expression, helps build new friendships and creates healthy bodies and minds. TAS has supported the efforts of Uthando for many years and when their founder, James Fernie, offered us the opportunity to get involved at the school by sponsoring a concrete table tennis table, we jumped at the opportunity.”
THANK YOU Trans Africa Safaris for the support and LOVE !

Content by: Uthando



Picture1Saturday, 16 September is International Coastal Clean-up Day and a number of Trans Africa Safaris’ staff are lending a hand on Cape Town beaches. Events are planned in Hout Bay (Cape Town), Plettenberg Bay and a number of other coastal towns in effort to spread awareness of marine pollution, and assist in beach clean-up operations.

This is a chance for us to reflect on the impact that our species has on the marine environment and hopefully an opportunity to do something, no matter how small, to relieve the pressure on the re st of the species with whom we share this space.

Picture2Propelled by the wind and ocean currents, litter – which is highly persistent in the environment – travels very long distances and becomes widely dispersed throughout the oceans. With this pollution increasingly in the form of tiny plastic bits, picking up a few bottles left on the beach can feel far removed from the massive problem of miniscule plastic bits (known as microplastics) floating out at sea. Plastic starts breaking down, or degrading, when exposed to light and high temperatures from the sun. This process known as photo-oxidation happens much faster on land than in the comparatively cool waters of the ocean.

Picture3On a sunny, warm beach, a plastic water bottle starts to show the effects of photo-oxidation. Its surface becomes brittle and tiny cracks start forming. Those larger shards of plastic break apart into smaller and smaller pieces. A brisk wind or child playing on the beach may cause this brittle outer layer of plastic to crumble. The tide washes these now tiny pieces of plastic into the ocean.

Once in the ocean, the process of degrading slows down for the remains of this plastic bottle. It can sink below the water surface, where less light and heat penetrate and less oxygen is available. In addition, plastics can quickly become covered in a thin film of marine life, which further blocks light from reaching the plastic and breaking it down. And so these microplastics can exist for many decades in our oceans.

Picture4Some of the devastating effects of marine pollution are:

• One million seabirds are killed by marine pollution every year
• 100,000 turtles and marine mammals, such as dolphins, whales and seals, are killed by plastic marine litter every year around the world
• Plastics are the most common man-made objects sighted at sea, with 18,000 pieces of plastic litter floating on every square kilometre of the world’s oceans!
• Six million tonnes of debris enters the world’s oceans every year, weighing about the same as a million elephants!
• More than 260 animal species worldwide have become entangled in or consumed fishing line, nets, ropes and other discarded equipment
• An astounding 86 per cent of all marine turtles are affected by marine debris
• Every day ships throughout the world discard 5.5 million pieces of rubbish into our oceans
• Carbon emissions into our atmosphere are killing our coral reefs! Our oceans are absorbing the excess carbon dioxide and becoming more acidic. The acid is literally ‘eating away’ the skeleton of the corals


The iconic BIG FIVE

The iconic BIG FIVE – lion, elephant, buffalo, rhino and leopard – have long dominated the list of must-sees on an African safari.

It is, however, also important to acknowledge the smaller creatures, and in particular, five small animals called the ‘LITTLE FIVE.’ Certainly nowhere near as popular as the Big Five, or other terrestrial and marine mammals, they nonetheless have an important role to play in nature and an effort is being made to draw attention these ‘Little Five.’

The list comprises:

ant lionThe ant lion 

The ant lion is an odd member of the bushveld, but one you’re quite likely to recognise. These creatures dig conical depressions in dry, soft sand and use these as a trap to catch ants.

Ant lions sometimes develop wings and resemble dragonflies, although they are not particularly well-adapted for flight.

 Buffalo weaverThe buffalo weaver 

Red-billed buffalo weavers are known to be social birds that build their nests in the forked branches of tall trees. They nest in open, noisy colonies and their nests are easily recognised by their messy construction.

rhino beetleThe rhinoceros beetle 

One of the largest beetles in Africa, the rhino beetle has horns on its head that resemble a rhino’s. Both males and females are horned, but only the males are known to use their horns when fighting rivals. Other uses for the horns include digging, climbing and mating.

leopard totoiseThe leopard tortoise 

Getting its name from the colour of its shell, the leopard tortoise is one of the largest breeds of tortoise in southern Africa. A mature leopard tortoise can weigh over 23 kilograms, with a shell circumference of up to one metre. Leopard tortoises live in savannah and grassland areas and like to be close to water.

elephant shrewThe elephant shrew 

This tiny insectivore is named because of its long, trunk-like snout. These shrews are found in grasslands and rocky outcrops and only grow to a length of about 250mm, with an average weight of 60 grams. Due to their speed and size, the chance of spotting one of these in the wild is slim, so seeing one before you see an actual elephant is something to be proud of!