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    Week 4, semester 3, two more tests down in Astronomy and Weather & Climate, not the easiest to learn when you want to focus on the amazing wildlife all around you. But these very important cosmic and atmospherically processes interact and affect our Earth and allow the multitude of life on it to develop and thrive! That and they make for some stunning backdrops to the Bushveld!

    Bushveld sunset

    With only two modules left for theory to cover, Human Habitation & History and Viewing Potentially Dangerous Animals, its dawning on us that the end is closer than we think with the FGASA exam and practical assessments just around the corner next semester. It’s a fine balance of broadening and strengthening our knowledge of the Bush for our practical assessments and the need to ingrain our theoretical knowledge ready for the theory exam, but hopefully we can marry the two together for the best in both.

    Our practical Astronomy tests have been delayed till next semester due to the thunderstorms and generally cloudy, rainy weather we’ve been having, but its good for the Bushveld to get some final rainfall before winter sets in properly. The Hippos certainly don’t mind it!

    Wallowing hippos

    Tuesday afternoon we all blew off some steam and some energy doing reserve work on Makalali. The bush gets quite a boost with all this rain and grows prolifically, so we were chopping and sawing along the edges of the reserve’s roads to clear the overhanging branches and encroaching bushes.

    Bush clearing

    People have now finished their last practice solo drives and a few of us had mock assessments this week, they all seemed to go pretty well and with a few tweaks here and there things a looking good going forward.

    Exam prep

    Friday afternoon saw us all go out for a final botany review of species we’ve covered since we started in January and got us off the vehicles in Makalali and in amongst the bushes.

    Exploring

    Its off-week now, can we relax? Maybe a bit but it will also involve completing workbooks, filling in knowledge gaps and prepping for our last few theory tests for Bushwise at the start of semester four. Also, with the added pressure of interviews for placements rapidly approaching for some.

    I find myself this time writing this in my own little home of my room on campus with the door open and sunshine streaming in, listening to movie soundtracks and the birds I’ve come to know very well outside.

    Campus hut

    Blog by Jack Broadley