Sightings: guides lead the way
Most of the tour guides at the Joint Venture Lodges which are pioneering Wildlife Credits are locals, who know the terrain and its wildlife intimately. They not only lead visitors to iconic wildlife in magical landscapes, they also keep notes so they know where to find the game. Ultimately, guides get to know and identify individual animals.
Wildlife Credits takes this a stage further. When a lion, rhino or other species benefiting from the programme is spotted, it is entered in a custom-made app, which records species, time and place, and further details. Information recorded by the guides is used by the lodges to monitor the conservation performance of each species and to add up what should be given to Wildlife Credits in local payments – an amount that will be added to and increased by supporters nationally and worldwide.
This information can also help Namibian conservation, which keeps records of wildlife populations using a variety of methods such as event books, game counts, citizen science and camera traps.