Volunteer pilots did it for nature

Mar 16, 2012

By Kim Helfrich

Last year was a busy one for a group of pilots – the Bateleurs– who volunteer their time and aircraft in support of conservation and the environment.

Included in their 21 missions for the year was a wild dog relocation and an aerial survey for the SA Bird Atlassing Project.

The idea of the Bateleurs was conceived in the late 1990s by Nora Kreher and based on a similar organisation of volunteer pilots in America, called Lighthawk. The Bateleurs was formally inaugurated in September 1998 and rates among its missions the successful fight to save the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park from mining.

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