Madikwe is home to 66 mammal species including the Big Five and approximately 300 resident and migrant bird species. It is one of South Africa's largest game reserves. Madikwe has the distinction of being one of the few game reserves in the world to be proclaimed purely on the grounds of being the most appropriate and sustainable land use for an area.
Madikwe represents an extension to this philosophy in that it is run as a joint venture between the State, the private sector and local communities. The success of this approach has made Madikwe the role model for similar ventures being started up elsewhere in South Africa.