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Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2007 10:05 am 
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Guru
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Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2005 8:18 am
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Location: Skukuza
Mgoddard wrote:
I returned from the park a month ago and just after leaving Satara first saw the small SANPARKS plane, with only the pilot inside.. and about half hour later a small commercial plane flying very low between Orpen and Satara....not sure where he was from or where he was going...still wondered about it as I read this thread before I left and was under the impression that no commercial flights are allowed...


Hi Mgoddard

The SANParks aircraft might have been our Bantam ultralight aircraft which the rangers use for aerial surveillance and other tasks. It was instrumental in the recent recovery of Duke's left tusk. Check out the story here:
http://www.sanparks.org/about/news/2007/august/duke.php

The small commercial aircraft was either the aircraft used to ferry passengers to the concession lodge or it could have been the aircraft used for various census operations.

Our aircraft, a Cessna, has recently been involved with a comprehensive animal census. Read story here:
http://www.sanparks.org/about/news/2007 ... census.php

The Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) also did a black rhino census using small civilian registered aircraft (for my fellow aviation enthusiasts like Simonb6, a Piper Super Cub and a Christen Huskey). I know there was a story on this somewhere on this website but I can't seem to find it now ...

Just so that you know, no unauthorised civilian aircraft are allowed over the KNP. The charters that fly into the lodges are authorised but have to stick to certain "channels" or "corridors" and altitudes. Procedures for these are laid down in what are called NOTAMS (Notice to Airmen) and are issued by South Africa's Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). CAA and SANParks share the responsibility of policing these regulations so if you did see an aircraft and managed to catch the registration, please let us know.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman

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Kruger National Park
110 Years of Conservation Success - Now isn't that worthy of a Celebration!


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2007 10:12 am 
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Guru
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Posts: 476
Location: Skukuza
p@m wrote:
Hi Simon, thanks for the reply. Am aware of the bird strike problem with large airliners & commercial ops, but wondered about vultures in particular over KNP as they soar very high prey spotting & a light plane or chopper doesn't stand a chance if they have a "meeting" ! Do you have any stats on this ? Other wilderness areas in neighbouring countries must have the same problem. Not the place to let the border collie clear the runway either :D


Hi p@m

During the last four years, we have only had one birdstrike incident. It was with our brand new helicopter - a Eurocopter AS350 Squirrel - and a bateleur hit it on take off. The pilot Mr Grant Knight was able to land and no one was injured. The bateleur was killed and the aircraft had extensive damage to the windscreen and instruments. It had to return to the manufacturer for repairs.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman

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Kruger National Park
110 Years of Conservation Success - Now isn't that worthy of a Celebration!


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Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2007 6:55 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:55 pm
Posts: 769
Although flying over the real KNP isn't allowed the latest version of Google Earth makes it possible in the virtual world. The latest version includes a flight simulator which allowes you to fly where ever you want. The flight simulator option is a hidden feature, here's an explanation of how to access it.

There's nothing like flying an F16 jet over the virtual KNP at Mach 1 :wink:


Last edited by madach on Wed Sep 05, 2007 8:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 3:57 pm 
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Guru
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Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2005 8:18 am
Posts: 476
Location: Skukuza
Our aircraft can be hired by - for example - our neighbouring game reserves for game counts etc, but sightseeing flights are a strict no-no.

There are strict regulations for overflying national parks in South Africa too, so there are no private operators doing this. We also received a resolute NO from our stakeholders in this regard during the recent KNP Management Plan public process, so I can say with some authority that we aren't even planning to bring in things like this in the future.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman

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Kruger National Park
110 Years of Conservation Success - Now isn't that worthy of a Celebration!


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