Best for Habitat and / or Species Conservation

  • The focus of the Best for Habitat and/or Species Conservation category is on tourism providers – whether tour operators, accommodation establishments, activity operators or conservation organisations – which have, through tourism, achieved species and/or habitat conservation objectives.

    There was a strong field of contenders in this category including many who had won previously in this family of Awards, within the Africa Responsible Tourism Awards or the World Responsible Tourism Awards. Previous winners in either the Africa or the World Awards need to demonstrate that they have significant new achievements or evidence of impact to report.

  • Gold: Grootbos Private Nature Reserve

    Grootbos was recognised in 2017 in the World Awards in the accommodation category and in 2007 for conservation. Grootbos regularly wins awards but the judges wanted to acknowledge the progress which has been made in recent years with the significant extension of their conservation work.

    Grootbos has made substantial progress in realising their ambition to achieve a landscape-level conservation project and to create an ecological corridor to conserve fynbos. Six species new to science have been identified, 9500 hectares has now been cleared of alien species and a further 653 hectares has been included in the conservation area.

    Grootbos now employs six conservation specialists which includes a botanist, entomologist, alien clearing specialist, mammalian fauna specialist and motion camera monitoring specialist. There are 36 motion sensor cameras in service enabling Grootbos to identify the fauna species in the flora reserve and to extend their conservation work.

    The Groootbos Private Nature Reserve supports 20% of the direct spend on conservation through a ZAR75 conservation levy on the lodge and 25% is raised by the Groootbos Foundation selling products and services at above-market prices to the Grootbos Lodges.

    One to Watch: Great Plains Conservation, Sapi Reserve

    Great Plains Conservation was recognised for its conservation work in the World Awards in 2009. The judges were delighted to see that Great Plains has won the rights to trade and offer safari experiences in the private Sapi Reserve in Zimbabwe. A wildlife protection and monitoring anti-poaching unit has begun work and wire snares are being removed.

    The judges recognise that this is an important new development and expect it to win an award in the near future as the new photographic safari business develops replacing the previous hunting concession.