An annual Cycle in the Bush was conceptualized by the previous Important Bird and Biodiversity Area (IBA) Programme years ago. The recent event was a 4-day, 3-night trip held at the exclusive Selati Game Reserve in Limpopo with the aim to raise funds for BirdLife South Africa’s East Atlantic Flyway Initiative (EAFI) project within the Regional Conservation Programme. EAFI aims to create a network of steppingstone sites that are used by migratory birds by identifying conservation priorities and increasing capacity for conservation along this Flyway. The project is partnering with and supporting countries (Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe specifically) to understand and report their biodiversity. Through training and capacity building, countries will improve their knowledge on the key threats these species face along the flyway, improve the conservation and ultimately the management of important sites, expand the network of areas which are protected and conserved and influence policies to ensure better protection of migratory species, nationally, regionally, and internationally. BirdLife South Africa’s EAFI Project Manager is supported through the Royal Society for Protection of Birds (RSPB). It was fortunate that Ian Barber, Senior Flyway Programme Officer, could join the BirdLife South Africa team of representatives for this event.

This fun-filled, all-inclusive, long weekend had various activities for guests to take part in. Ranging from leisurely morning rides on trails conducted by expert guide, David Havemann from Ecotraining, who shared his extensive knowledge on the African bush; to afternoon game drives with sundowners and additional activities such as bird watching, star gazing, signs of the bush and learning more about all aspects of nature. Awareness was raised about the important work of the BirdLife South Africa conservation team through a presentation by BirdLife South Africa’s Head of Conservation, Dr Hanneline Smit-Robinson. Lance Robinson (BirdLife South Africa Recommended Course Provider) enlightened the guests with a presentation on bird migration. The theme of migration was expanded on in Ian Barber’s presentation on the RSPB’s interest, support, and involvement in the conservation of birds along the East Atlantic Flyway.

Cycle in the Bush_Photo 4
Cycle in the Bush
Cycle in the bush March 2022

Hiking and Biking for Birds

Hiking and Biking for Birds Adventure Series in 2023 with BirdLife South Africa and Outland Escape Cycle Tours with 6 new scenic locations across South Africa!

BirdLife South Africa and Outland Escape Tours have joined together to organise the 2023 Hiking and Biking for Birds Adventure Series with six events happening at six unique locations throughout the year. The money raised from these events will come to the Empowering People and Regional Conservation Programmes. The events will alternate between hiking or biking and is not aimed at being strenuous but an enjoyable way to find and enjoy the special birds in each of these regions.

‘Biking for birds’ adventures to look forward to include the Entabeni Private Game Reserve from 30 March to 2 April, which boasts more than 600 bird species! A second option is Limpokwena Nature Reserve from 14 to 17 September where the natural beauty of the Limpopo Province will soothe your woes and reinvigorate your senses. Lastly, you can take in the towering mountains, as you immerse yourself in the magical setting of the Cederberg from 2 to 5 November where you can take a scenic cycle in the botanically diverse Cape floral kingdom and cycle among the twisted rock formations. You might even see a Verreaux’s Eagle!

Hiking not to be missed will happen at Manukuza Wilderness from 8 to 11 June situated in the heart of the Lowveld and adjacent to the Kruger National Park. Or enjoy a Big 5 Birding Bush Walk at Mkuze Game Reserve from 24 to 27 August where there are more than 400 species of birds, making it a birder’s paradise. And from 12 to 15 October in the Selati Game Reserve in the heart of Limpopo. The reserve is nestled between stunning granite outcrops which creates amazing pockets of habitat that makes it ideal for some incredible bird sightings.

So, if you have a passion for hiking or biking and enjoy bird watching, don’t miss out on this great opportunity to go on an adventure of a lifetime while giving to conservation. Choose one location or join them all! All proceeds will go to BirdLife South Africa, giving conservation wings!

For more information contact

Our Sponsors


RSPB fund various projects within the IBA Programme.

Leonardo Di Caprio Foundation

The Leonardo Di Caprio Foundation supports the work of Conservation Areas in South Africa.

IUCN-Species Survival Commission

IUCN-Species Survival Commission provides funding for the work of Key Biodiversity Areas in South Africa and Africa.