Alex Faria

Alex’s love for wildlife and conservation goes back as far as he can remember. Having been born and raised in Joburg, he always jokes that living in a big city is all the encouragement one needs to look to wilder horizons.

Childhood holidays were spent in wild and wonderful places. From the heat and desolation of Namibia’s salt pans to the lush and magical forests of the Tsitsikamma, Alex was exposed to the wonder of nature and biodiversity from a young age. As time went on and his learning deepened, he found a love for utilization conservation as well as citizen science, both of which he feels encourage people to embrace and better understand the natural world.

Alex acquired both a BCom and a BScAgric (Applied Plant and Soil Science) from the University of Pretoria. The focus of his honours year was, amongst other things, maximizing land- and resource-use efficiency in an agricultural setting. This is where he began to understand the economic and human aspects of conservation.

Experience-wise, Alex was lucky enough to have a diverse and varied start to his professional career, having been in the corporate world, assisted with both agricultural and conservation research, and worked as an agricultural specialist.

Thus far, Alex has led a privileged life full of amazing “natural” experiences, and he feels that this course will give him the opportunity to give back to the industry and world that has given so much to him.

Thesis: Reviving giants, reclaiming carbon: exploring the synergy of megafauna, soil carbon, rewilding. (Supervisors: Charlene Janion-Scheepers, Guy Midgley)