How Low can Wilderness Safaris Get?

Old Apr 7th, 2008, 06:39 AM
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Woops posted to wrong thread.
Old Apr 7th, 2008, 08:53 AM
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ker&downey doesn't allow hunting on its concenssions......
Old Apr 7th, 2008, 08:57 AM
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You cannot believe how relieved I am on hearing this, or why it was even mentioned.
Can you give us a list of all of those that do not allow hunting, I for one do not care a jot!
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 05:11 AM
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Dear sniktawk and others,

I don't know how Selinda got involved in the Wilderness gripe session, but here are some facts.

Our airfield is not flooded. We nearly went under after some heavy rains as did other airfields in the area.
We, like some others, had to ask Wilderness if we could use their airfield in their neighbouring Linyanti concession and received permission. The difficulty that some operators experienced, as far as I can ascertain, is that they simply drove into the concession without asking, used the airfield, taking their time driving through the concession that doesn't really belong to them, and then taking their time again driving out, again without asking (and without paying for the airfield’s upkeep). I think I would be twitchy as well.
Selinda has 9 tents, one is a pilot's tent or a single if we have to, and we are actually cutting one out this next season. We actually asked permission from Land Board for this, as did we when we wanted to use a mobile camp nearby Motswiri as we upgrade there.
CCA are not buying a camp in our concession. I sometimes wonder where these amazing ideas come from.
Wilderness do not own anything in our area either. They are one of our many booking agents, although we have our own office in Kasane as well.
The magical new or fourth camp near Zibadianja, is being built as we speak, but comes about after extensive EIA's, Ministry of the Environment visits, Tawana Land Board visits and approvals, and it will be REPLACING old Zib camp not adding to the beds or somehow trying to sneak in under the radar. The old camp site lost most of its trees and is of course to be totally rehabilitated as part of our agreement and EIA. This is actually the first camp in Botswana to undergo such extensive legislative and EIA processes, and we are pleased about that. One last thing. Having the recently newly inaugarated president as a partner in fact makes us even more aware of our responsibility and necessity to adhere to the law not less so and any implication of any impropriety is serious and needs real substantiation. Please don't start silly rumours that just get everyone upset, especially not anonymously. If you have any questions feel free to contact me and I will be happy to expand or fill you in. We are trying to run a top notch company in the safari business and look after our concession, improve the experience and enhance the natural habitat and wildlife numbers as well as be good neighbours. It looks like this started as a wave of bitterness from someone being expelled from a Wilderness concession. At Selinda we are sort of land locked and can't offer a lot of help by way of access, but if there is anything we can do, all you need to do is ask, and we will help where we can.

Grant Nel CEO Selinda Reserve.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 08:18 AM
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Hi Grant,
The information regarding the flooding of the airstrip came from pilots and flying over it. If it was not flooded why did you ask Wilderness for permission to use Linyanti?

Your point about lengthy drives through a concession which does not belong to you is a tad misleading the route in question is a transit route, which I understand anybody can use. It does after all lead into the Chobe NP.

The point about Selinda is that there are/were two other camps in use in the Motswiri area last year. Are you saying that this is false, if so who could we hear singing last year.

Perhasps you could let us know just what the bed limitations for your concession are and how many beds you have.
Old Apr 8th, 2008, 08:43 AM
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Hi Grant,

I forgot 2 things.

Thanks for clarifying the position regarding CCA and the 4th camp, I thought it was highly unlikely.

How is the ne Zib progressing, I can find nothing on the website.
Old Apr 8th, 2008, 09:02 AM
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Thanks for the post, Grant.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 10:36 AM
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sorry, but i don't have a list as such. can just provide the information a got based on a research:
ker and downey
sanctuary lodges
these establishments definately don't allow nor support hunting!
hope that helps.......
Old Apr 8th, 2008, 11:55 PM
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Hi Ken
At the time of your initial posting our strip was open, hence my statement "Our strip is not flooded". It was closed over a very short period (about 14 days)& was mostly due to very heavy rains in mid Feb. The route to the airstrip is NOT the designated transit route. The official transit route bypasses the airstrip by some kilometres.
Our bed allowance is 16 at Selinda (9 tents allows for two sgls), 6 at Zibadianja, 6 on trails, 8 at Motswiri with the allowance for one fly camp of 6 beds. These bed allowances are interchangeable so if we want to put a group of 18 at Selinda we can only have a max of 6 in Zib and so on. We in fact juggle these depending on reservation requests.
The Wilderness Safaris Camps in the Motswiri area (which we have never denied) over the last two years WAS a short term agreement we entered into whereby we could have a more regular human prescence in an area that has increasingly been prone to meat poaching by neighbouring communities. This had the very desirable effect of seriously reducing the instances & we continue to work with the community of Gudigwa to reduce it further. We have taken over all management of these two camps (one traditional meru style & one fly)from April this year. The old Motswiri Camp will be our operations base camp (no guests) to support these two camps & handle all logistics.
Zibadianja is coming on well, though delayed due to manufacturer delays with the new tents. More news will be posted on our website soon along with the Enviromental Impact document.
As this is a traveller's forum, I feel I should not be making regular postings & this will be my last. Please feel free to contact me via email should you have any other questions.
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 02:31 AM
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Hi Glen,

Thanks for your response, I understand that you do not wish to continue posting on this site. it is after all supposedly for customers rather than operators.

Regarding the transit route, I can see one on my map, I agree it does not actualy reach the airstrip but it is not far away. Surely it would be good manners in times of difficulties (floods) to bend the rules a little. This route could hardly be called a hot spot for game viewing.

I must admit I am surprised that the bed limit is as high as you state, it is larger than Kwando which has a concession more than twice the size of Selinda.

I is OK to say that you never denied the presence of the Wilderness Camps. The problem is/was that you did not tell anybody who was booking at Motswiri about there presence in an area marketed as "exclusive".

Thanks for the info on Zib, it will be nice to see some pictures especially for the many of us regulars that will no longer be able to afford to stay there, or do not wish to pay such a high amount.
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