Topic: Drill and Training
The Camel Corps
The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, Australia, 8 November 1916
Men who have been selected for service with the camel corps are trained in Menangle Camp under Colonel Lenehan. The camels used were brought down from up-country under special drivers, who have been accustomed to them and understand their ways. The men are given instructions in riding, loading, and looking after the animals.
Most of the work consists in teaching the men to learn "camel talk," for the camel has to be addressed in a manner he understands, or else he declines to budge, being one of the most obstinate of animals. The men have to be taught how to persuade a camel to lie down or rise up, as the case may be, and also are instructed in the saddling of these "ships of the desert." When it comes to mounting the camel with full kit there are many amusing incidents, for if the animal rises quickly before the recruit is firm in the saddle, the recruit more often than not takes an impromptu toboggan slide down its back and lands on the ground spread-eagled, with his helmet and rifle on either side of him. Australians who are good horsemen, however, quickly learn the "tricks of the trade," many, in fact, having had more or less to do with camels in the pre-war days, with the result that the men forming the Australian Camel Corps know their job from A to Z before they leave for the front.