August 21, 2013

PROFESSIONAL FIELD GUIDE COURSE: Testimony that you’ll have the time of your life!

The time is NOW to make that jump into an adventure of epic proportions. EcoTraining’s professional field guide course will change your life and put you on a path sure to be more exciting than you can ever imagine.

The next one is about to start, in September, and for a limited period of time being offered at a special rate. Email and make sure that you are among the lucky ones!

Like Marc Lindsay Rea, who says he’s now living the dream, thanks in part to EcoTraining who has put him in a very privilege position indeed.

Here is his story, enjoy, and be prepared to book your place afterwards…

“When I was 11 my father went on a business trip to Phinda Private game reserve and returned home with a brochure of CC Africa. I was amazed by the images… From that day on I knew I wanted to work in the bush and become a ranger. 

So it was a natural choice for me to do a game ranging and lodge management diploma after school, which I passed with an overall distinction. During my diploma course I did two EcoTraining courses, at Selati and Makuleke. This was the first time I had actually spent a solid amount of time in the bush doing training. It was brilliant.

After my course and practical experiences at EcoTraining, I approached AndBeyond and passed their selection phase and relevant training and was offered a job at Madikwe Safari Lodge. Since starting my guiding career in early in 2006, I steadily climbed the ranks becoming a senior ranger, mentor, assistant head ranger and was then appointed as head ranger in October 2008.

For most of 2011 I spent my time working in Namibia at Sossusvlei Desert Lodge. I also spent time working in Botswana at Nxabega and Sandibe lodge in the Okavango delta for AndBeyond.

In 2012 whilst working as a ranger and a specialist guide at Phinda Game Reserve I was nominated by my peers to compete in the Safari Guide of the year 2012. I made it into the top eight rangers in the country and in the finals I won two out of the six categories we were all being assessed on.

I have completed my FGASA Level 3 and have also got my Level 2 trackers qualification. In addition I’ve got a full trails guide walking qualification with hundreds of hours of walking experience and dangerous game encounters on foot. This is one of my favourite ways of experiencing the bush and encourage all my guests to come tracking big game on foot with me.

After the competition Africa Direct noticed me and my skills in the bush and offered me a position to become a private, specialist guide in their company. I now get to travel all over Africa with my guests and am at the pinnacle of my guiding career.

I thank and appreciate everybody and every company that has put in many long hours to help get me to the position I am at now. Thank you!

In addition to the bush I have a massive passion for wildlife photography. I have been placed first and third in two international competitions: Africa Geographic / Canon Field Guides Competition and Wildside Nikon All Africa Competition respectively.

I have travelled to a large number of countries around the globe but nothing compares to the excitement of travelling Africa. I am very serious birder and am called a twitcher by many of my friends. Because of my love for birding I have explored the remotest parts of Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia looking for all the special rarities.

In 2009 I founded a small non-profit organisation with the help of my work colleagues and some guests to support the Matetsi Community along the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe. We helped 150 people for 3 years supplying them with vegetable seeds, clothing, toiletries and fishing equipment to try make living a little easier over that difficult time in the country.

I have such a thirst for acquiring knowledge about wildlife and nature from around the world and I am lucky to have the privilege to guide guests through these exciting places.”

(Thanks for sharing Marc!) 
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