Ranger Timothy predominantly guides out of Bayethe. He is a friendly, free-spirited and charming individual who joined the Shamwari ranger’s team a little under a year ago.

Name: Timothy Donnelly
Title: Game Ranger
Started at Shamwari: 09 August 2018
Hometown: Cape Town
Previous roles: I worked at Aquila Private Game Reserve and Garden Route Game Lodge before joining the Shamwari rangers department.

Ranger Timothy


FGASA Field Guide
FGASA Marine Guide
Track & sign level 2


Reading, site seeing, learning and bush walking.


Being a guide allows me to be a part of a greater environment and by seeing the day to day interactions makes it easier to immerse my guests in a vanishing way of life. I am also passionate about birding.

Ant-eating chat

Ant-eating chat photographed by Ryan Plakonouris

Favourite part of the job:

Turning complete strangers into friends.


“In everything you do, find an opportunity to have fun.” – my dad

Favourite animal:

White rhino.

While working at the Garden Route Game Lodge, I got to know a white rhino bull particularly well and during that time I came to realise that animals have personalities too. If you take the time to immerse you will understand too.

Favourite animal in a sighting:


An elephant herd is comprised of a family of many different generations, from the grandma to the cousins, aunties and babies. And you know the babies are always up to something.

Most exciting encounter while on game drive:

I remember I was guiding out of Bayethe. It was my guests’ third night and we had seen all there was to see except for the leopard.

We headed out on drive with determination to find a cat. We were on a mission. After finding the last known location of the leopard, with no known sightings of it, we decided to wait.

My mentor and colleague, Ranger Mino, was around to assist greatly by helping relocate the leopard but had to leave soon for a drinks stop.

About 45 minutes later, after good conversation and lots of searching around, a heavy feeling started weighing down on my chest – it was getting dark and I had to start thinking about heading back to the lodge.

One thing you need to know about guides here at Shamwari is that we never give up. For very good reason; one last loop is all it takes. After four or five “last loops”, we were about to start making our way back when something inside me was drawn to this one spot. And there he was, sitting nonchalantly, grooming himself to perfection.

I’ve never called someone on the radio so quickly, and Ranger Mino was there even quicker! It was amazing to see the joint admiration of people from different walks of life coming together at that moment.


Leopard photographed by Ryan Plakonouris