Game Capture Program

During an intensive 3-week period, Game Capture volunteers assist an experienced South African wildlife vet and their professional game capture team with a variety of wildlife relocations throughout the Eastern Cape. Volunteers are involved in every aspect of the capture from planning to immobilization and treatment, then transport and release. Students are trained to provide treatments, monitor vitals, and physically transport a wide variety of wild species. Lectures and discussion groups with experts in the field allow for a comprehensive wildlife experience. This program is available to anyone with an interest in exotic medicine, conservation, or just an exhilarating wildlife experience. Due to the nature of game capture, this program has a limited number of sessions.

Types of Capture

  • Helicopter Capture
  • Curtain Capture
  • Net Capture
  • Dart Gun Capture
  • Passive Capture
  • Cage Traps
Volunteer vet students participating in game capture for international veterinary experience in South Africa
vet student program

Lecture & Discussion Topics

  • Safety protocols during game capture
  • Pharmacology (species-specific tranquilizers)
  • Species identification
  • Dart gun safety, introduction and practice
  • Types of capture (when, why, and how)
  • Hunting (Canned, Trophy, Conservation, etc.)
  • Population control (culling vs. relocation)
  • Ethics of game capture
  • Ethics of specialized breeding


Week 1

  • Friday: Arrival
  • Saturday: Free Time
  • Sunday: Transfer to Capture Site
  • MondayThursday: Capture Days

Week 2

  • Friday: Morning Capture / Transfer to Chintsa
  • Saturday: Free Time
  • Sunday: Transfer to Capture Site
  • MondayThursday: Capture Days

Week 3

  • Friday: Morning Capture / Transfer to Chintsa
  • Saturday: Free Time
  • Sunday: Transfer to Capture Site
  • MondayThursday: Capture Days

Week 4

  • Friday: Morning Capture / Transfer to Chintsa
  • SaturdaySunday: Free Time
  • Monday: Departure


Upon arrival in East London, volunteers are greeted by one of our Program Coordinators who will then take them to the volunteer house where they can settle in and get in touch with friends and family.

In the evening, students meet for orientation which includes a tour of the house, official introductions, and a review of the plan for the week. A welcome pack is provided with a guide to local culture, a map of the area, a list of weekend activities and trips, and coupons for local establishments.

On Sunday morning, Game Capture volunteers are transferred to the capture site where they stay throughout the week. Volunteers are transferred back to the Chintsa volunteer house every Friday to stay with the other volunteers and have access to weekend activities.

Students enjoy free time after a long week of veterinary experience in South Africa

Accommodation & Meals

During the week, volunteers stay on a beautiful game reserve near Port Elizabeth. The lodge has bunk beds, electricity, running water, and modern bathrooms. Game capture volunteers are transferred back to our “home base” in Chintsa every Friday and return to the lodge on Sunday afternoon. Bedding is provided at all sites and we guarantee safe and comfortable accommodation throughout the program.

Meals are simple and nutritious. Breakfast consists of cereal, fruit, eggs, toast, tea and coffee. A sandwich lunch is packed at the beginning of each day- options include meat & cheese, peanut butter & jelly, or tuna mayo, along with fruit and juice. Dinner includes a protein, a starch, and at least 1 vegetable. We accommodate most dietary preferences including vegetarians.

program deposit

Rates & Dates

Click here for current program rates & dates.

Each session has a maximum of 6 volunteers.

Due to weather and other unforeseen circumstances, some capture days may be canceled- every effort will be made to reschedule in these cases.

GVE is happy to be associated with ADL – Academy for Distance Learning, based in the UK. ADL’s previous and present students from South Africa include a renowned conservationist, who was a previous chief operating officer of Africa Needs Lions and a primate naturalist currently working in Kwazulu Natal.

Their wildlife programs include certificates and diplomas in:

  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Wildlife Management
  • Vertebrate Zoology
  • Invertebrate Zoology
  • Carnivore Zoology
  • Animal Science
  • Animal Welfare
  • Reptiles and Amphibians (Herpetology)
  • Marine Studies
  • Primatology
  • Zookeeping (also applicable to Safari Parks)
  • Animal and Environmental Welfare

Each certificate can be endorsed and issued by a UK Recognised Awarding Organisation. Please click here to view the courses available.