The life of a conservation pilot in Africa is one of the more unique and exciting jobs, soaring high above the clouds and getting a bird’s-eye view of the beautiful landscapes below. As exhilarating as this is, it is not a job for the faint-hearted as it is filled with long hours supporting the teams on the ground who are protecting wildlife. Today, after morning duties have been completed in Mozambique’s Limpopo National Park, the pilots meet up on the banks of the Shingwedzi River for a quick catch-up over coffee.
Many of the national parks that Peace Parks Foundation and partners work in, consist of vast areas that are hard to reach by vehicle so pilots assist with tasks that would take ground teams hours or even days to do. These include things like setting up and retrieving camera traps or dropping and picking up rangers.
With an area of over 1 million hectares to explore, these lucky pilots have access to a vast expanse of unspoilt wilderness that remains tucked away in the beautiful Limpopo National Park. Some of these locations include pristine, untouched tracts of wilderness that many outdoor enthusiasts would love to see in person.
It seems that having limited road access within remote protected areas such as this one certainly has its perks, allowing for these hard-working pilots to have their coffee breaks in rather scenic settings – a great benefit to an already wonderful job!
Peace Parks remains incredibly grateful to all our hard-working pilots who remain away from home, and their families, for long periods of time. They play a critical role in helping to keep our protected spaces and the wildlife within them, safe.