Conservation aims

"To ensure the conservation of native wildlife by protecting the land, managing it sustainably, and recreating the former species assemblage"


South Africa has an incredibly rich biodiversity and is considered one of the world’s mega diverse countries; that is the top 17 countries that account for two thirds of all species on Earth. Although the country represents only 2% of the land surface of the world, it is home to 7.5% of the planet’s plants, 5.8% of its mammals, 8% of its bird species, 4.6% of its reptiles and 5.5% of its insects. However, a large proportion of South Africa’s species are threatened largely through habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation. It is vitally important for the survival of many species that more land is conserved as natural habitat.

UmPhafa was established entirely as a site for conservation, education and research and as such its management is not defined by other influences. Without the reliance upon general tourism, wildlife can be maintained at natural equilibrium for the environment rather than artificial rates of ‘popular’ species. Infrastructure in the form of lodges and roads is unnecessary allowing the development of ‘wilderness areas’, and disturbance from human activity is minimal! UmPhafa’s strategy is less to do with the management of the wildlife, but more the rehabilitation of the habitat itself to facilitate the restoration of a natural balance.    


UmPhafa is located in the foothills of the Drakensberg Mountain Range, a world heritage site

Number of species offically recorded on Umphafa

Mammals 50
Birds 240
Reptiles 26
Amphibians 11
Trees & Plants  443