Christiaan Lochner

Cederberg Project and Research Assistant: Christiaan Lochner
Cederberg Project and Research Assistant: Christiaan Lochner

Christiaan was born in the Boland region of the Western Cape, where he grew up fishing and hiking. These experiences together with holidays spent on a family farm in the Eastern Cape instilled a keen interest in wildlife and the landscapes they roam. Following high school, Christiaan spent time volunteering with a community project in northern Mozambique and completed various field guiding qualifications.

The following year he made a commitment to his dream of becoming a conservationist by studying towards a Diploma in Nature Conservation at NMMU Saasveld. During his experiential year at SANParks’s Karoo National Park, Christiaan was appointed as sergeant ranger of the Zuurberg section and eventually acting senior section ranger of the Main Camp section of Addo Elephant National Park. His duties there included the supervision of field rangers in their day to day activities which included law enforcement patrols, maintenance tasks and various wildlife management operations.

During his time at Addo, Christiaan was involved in the monitoring of black rhino which lead to him developing an interest in the research side of conservation. To better qualify himself for a more research focused career, Christiaan left SANParks to complete a B-tech Degree in Nature Conservation. This then allowed him to start an MSc project at NMMU’s zoology department, titled Elephant space use and impacts on vegetation in response to habitat expansion in succulent thicket.

This project investigated if the expansion of Addo Main Camp lowered the pressure elephant have on the section’s succulent thicket vegetation. Christiaan completed this project in March 2017, after which he joined the Cape Leopard Trust team as Cederberg Project and Research Assistant.

spacer

spacer