Professional courses | Antares
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Professional Courses
For more information about the specific courses on offer please read below

3-month NQF2 Field Guide Course

The 3-month course offer students the opportunity to complete the necessary NQF2 qualification and follow this up with a variety of other certified components including the Savanna Birding specialist qualification. There will be ample opportunity to develop and improve the practical skills required to become a successful guide and for those that are willing there will be an opportunity to complete a 6-month placement at a variety of lodges in the Lowveld.

The course is designed over a 3-month period allowing both local and overseas students to attend. There is an option to add-on an apprentice Trails Guide qualification a few weeks later. This is scheduled like this to enable any overseas students to return home and then come back on a new visa. For more information on the Trails Guide course please read the relevant description below.

Included in the cost of the course are 5-6 other certified components, as detailed below. All training related excursions are included as well as a comprehensive issue of required and recommended books (valued at over R2000), a comprehensive clothing issue (valued at over R2500) and a set of Vortex binoculars(valued at over R3500).

  • Over and above the usual guide training subjects required to complete the NQF2 qualification a number of exciting and rewarding options are included.
  • These Include:


    A 4×4 driving skills course

    This course is conducted over 4 days by Nostophobic Adventures. This is a FGASA-endorsed course and offers an NQF3 qualification after successful completion.


    A Wilderness level 1&2 First Aid

    This essential life-skills course is conducted by Andrew Miller from the Smart Solution. Andrew has been conducting our first aid training components for more than 11 years and provides a professional and passionate course.


    A Photographic course

    Villiers Steyn will help you to understand how to maximise the use of your DSLR, frame photos for the best effect and how to offer assistance to your guests by positioning them in the best spot to get that award winning photo on their safari. Antares recommends that students should bring a DSLR camera on the course but if this is not available, a camera can be made available for training purposes.


    A Reptile Handling course.

    Johan Marais has been curator at a number of collections in the region and over the past 40 years has become one of the leading herpetologists in the country. Johan offers a FGASA-endorsed course and students will leave this course with a great deal of confidence and the skills to ensure that their guests will be safe.


    A Savanna Birding Specialist course.

    A week long intensive section only on birds will give the students the knowledge and skills for them to achieve their Savanna Specialist Birding certificate. Bird-watching is a rapidly growing division with the tourism sector and it is important the guides are educated sufficiently to be able to provide the required level of service. We will be joined for at least one day by a leading South African ornithologist who will help you improve your identification skills of those LBJ’s and others.


    A Hosting and Marketing skills component.

    Students will experience a range of products from visiting Amarula lapa to attending a wine tasting course with Safari Wines. Here they will learn about various products that they can promote to lodge guests, and learn how to serve and pair wines according to the menu. They will be given guidance on how to meet and greet their guests on arrival at a lodge and they will also be given guidance on how best to develop their own marketing skills and how to prepare themselves for life in the industry.

60-day NQF2 Field Guide Course


This course covers the basic NQF2 (former level 1) components and is designed for those who can’t afford the time or money to attend the more advanced programme.

Antares realises that there will be students out there that can’t afford the time or extra expense of attending a longer, more advanced course and offers this as an alternative.

The course will cover only the basic NQF2 syllabus and although this is all that is required to obtain a legal guiding qualification it will limit the students options of finding employment afterwards.

By comparison to the longer course, only a level 1&2 first aid section is included and no other add-on certificates are provided for. There will still be a hosting skills component as this is an important aspect of guiding.

5 week Apprentice Trails Guide Course


This course can be completed independently or as an add-on to either of the NQF2 courses

Antares has also introduced a new component to our portfolio which will cover the Apprentice Trails Guide qualification

Run over 5 weeks this course is designed to afford students an opportunity to begin their Trails Guide qualification and to start logging those all important encounters with Dangerous Game. There will be a Track and Sign component included, an Advanced Rifle Handling assessment and all the lectures, walks and assessments required to expose students to the basic requirements of the Trails Guide.

Only those students that have been declared competent against the NQF2 qualification will be accepted. All students will need to complete their PFTC competency before any ARH assessment can be conducted and this is included in the course structure. Antares will negotiate discounts for those students who have already completed this aspect before enrolling as well as those students who choose to use their own weapons and ammunition (minimum .375 calibre).

PFTC competency requirements:

The following PFTC unit standards (Professional Firearms Trainers Council):
▪ Unit Standard 117705: Demonstrate knowledge of the Firearms Control Act 2000 (Act No 60 of 2000) applicable to possessing a rifle
▪ Unit Standard 119651: Handle and Use a manually operated Rifle or Carbine
▪ Unit Standard 123519: Handle and use a manually operated Rifle or Carbine for Business Purposes