Bodyguard Training

SURVIVAL SKILLS: The art of survival in the african bush

In AMBUSH, Connor is not only pursued by gunmen toting AK47s, he has to survive the dangerous wilds of Africa.

If you were lost in the bush, would you know how to survive?

The three basics of survival are water, food and shelter. Without these, your chances of staying alive for any period of time are seriously reduced.

1. Find water

water symbol


In the savannah, it might not rain for weeks or even months. This makes finding water a difficult task. But there are ways:


  1. Search for animal tracks and follow them to see if they lead to water.
  2. If you find a fast moving river, you’re in luck. Beware stagnant streams and rivers as these can harbour parasites and bacteria.
  3. If possible, boil any water you find to make it safe to drink.
  4. If you don’t find water, dig down at the lowest part of the river. Often water will lie beneath the surface of a dried up riverbed. If you do find water, use a piece of clothing to act as a sponge and trickle the water into your mouth.

2. Find Food


Food can also be difficult to source, but find water and you’ll likely find food nearby too.

Berries and fruit might be your easiest and most abundant source of nutrition. But before eating any, it’s crucial to check if they’re poisonous or not:


  1. First, cut open the fruit and smell it. If it smells like peaches or almonds, it’s poisonous.
  2. Rub the fleshy part of the fruit on your skin and wait at least a minute to see if it produces a rash or reaction. If so, it’s poisonous. Discard.
  3. Next, touch the fruit to your lips. If you feel a burning sensation, the fruit is not safe to eat.
  4. Otherwise, move the fruit to your tongue but don’t swallow. If the fruit doesn’t agravate your tongue, take a bite of the fruit and wait several hours to see if you become sick. If not, the fruit is edible.

A very good source of protein is termites or larvae, as Bear Grylls’ ably demonstrates in this video.

BEWARE: This is not for the squeamish!

3. Find Shelter


To sleep safely at night:


        1. Make a “boma” – a circular enclosure of acacia branches. The thorns will keep nocturnal predators away.
        2. Climb a tree and tie yourself securely to the bough.
        3. Find a hollowed out Baobab tree to take refuge inside.
        4. Or, climb up to a wide rock ledge and secure yourself so you don’t roll off during night.

The key factor is to keep out of reach of any potential predators while sleeping at night.


To discover more survival tips, read what the ranger Gunner has to say in BODYGUARD: AMBUSH.


Chris Bradford is a true believer in ‘practising what you preach’. For his award-winning Young Samurai series, he trained in samurai swordmanship, karate, ninjutsu and earned his black belt in Zen Kyu Shin Taijutsu.

Find out more here.

NEW IDEA ALERT! Excited to hand my finished proposal to my agent for a brand new book series. It’s still TOP SECRET and promises a thrilling hybrid novel (story and graphic novel) with a great twist in the tale! Watch this space for further updates👁…

About a year ago from Chris Bradford's Twitter via Twitter Web App