Uncapped London Irish scrum half Warren Fury, Dragons' scrum half Andy Williams and Scarlets fullback Morgan Stoddart are the only new faces outside of the 29-man squad which remained unbeaten during Gatland's debut season in charge.
Injury has forced Gavin Henson (ankle), Dwayne Peel (shoulder), Mark Jones (groin), Deiniol Jones (shoulder), Mike Phillips (knee) and Robin Sowden-Taylor (shoulder) to miss the training camp - although neither Henson nor Peel have yet been ruled out of the summer tour altogether. Lee Byrne and Sonny Parker will have knee injuries assessed later in the week to ensure they can travel to Ireland for the fitness work.
Dragons duo Rhys Thomas and Andy Williams are also named with the possibility of a late withdrawal in mind as coach Gatland wants them to remain with their region if European qualification continues to be at stake after this weekend's game.
The release by Gloucester Rugby of Gareth Cooper and Gareth Delve was not requested because of their play-off aspirations in the Guinness Premiership.
"We have been given the opportunity to go on a pre-tour training camp thanks largely to the support of the coaches and management at each of the four regions in Wales," said Gatland. "This is not something that we will be able to do every year, because I would like to see our regions in contention for end of season honours.
"But, with no European competition left at the end of a tough season and with Leinster runaway leaders of the Magners League, we have been able to negotiate a position which will hopefully be of benefit to everyone.
"The regions have allowed us to take the players away for an intensive period of training in advance of our tour to South Africa and I would like to personally express my gratitude for their co-operation."
Gatland will take his side to a training base in Wexford which specialises in Cryotherapy, a therapy which aids the body's recovery from exercise and therefore, basically, allows for more training to be undertaken in a short space of time than would normally be possible.
"Cryotherapy is something that has been around in sport for some time and something I've used before at specific times as an aid to training at various camps in Poland whilst I was in charge of Ireland and London Wasps," added Gatland.
"The facilities at the camp in Wexford will be top notch, but as much as anything else this is a chance for us to gather as a group for the first time since the Six Nations, to train together and to prepare ourselves for a tough tour against the Springboks.
"Andy Williams and Morgan Stoddart both have a chance to show the coaches what they have to offer and to book themselves a seat on the plane to South Africa. Andy and Warren in particular are in with a good shout with two injuries in their position to Mike Phillips and Dwayne Peel being a worry for us.
"This is our core group now, but there may also be one or two other names we add to the tour party injuries permitting and with a couple of players down in England not considered at the moment. There is also plenty more rugby to be played back in Wales before the full compliment of probably 26 players or so is announced on 14 May."
WALES TRAINING SQUAD, WEXFORD, MAY 2008
BACKS: Morgan Stoddart, Lee Byrne, Jamie Roberts, Shane Williams, Tom James, Sonny Parker, Tom Shanklin, Stephen Jones, James Hook, Andy Williams, Warren Fury
FORWARDS: Ryan Jones, Alix Popham, Martyn Williams, Jonathan Thomas, Ian Evans, Alun-Wyn Jones, Ian Gough, Duncan Jones, Gethin Jenkins, Rhys Thomas, Adam Jones, Matthew Rees, Huw Bennett
Wales Training Squad Biogs
Morgan STODDART (LLANELLI SCARLETS - Cap No 1,056)
DoB: 23.09.84. 6'1" / 1.86m. 14st 9lbs / 93kgs
International record: 1 cap (L 1; 5 pts - 1T)
Lee BYRNE (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,041)
DoB: 01.06.80. 6'3" / 1.91m. 15st 4lbs / 97kgs
International record: 19 caps (W 8, L 10, D 1; 25 pts - 5T)
Jamie ROBERTS (CARDIFF BLUES - 1,057)
DoB: 08.11.86. 6'4" / 1.93m. 16st 10lbs / 107kgs
International record: 1 cap (W 1)
Shane WILLIAMS (OSPREYS - Cap No 976)
DoB: 26.02.77. 5'7" / 1.71m. 12st 13lbs / 82kgs
International record: 56 caps (W 29, L 25, D 2; 205 pts - 41T)
Tom JAMES (CARDIFF BLUES - Cap No 1,055)
DoB: 17.04.87. 6'2" / 1.88m. 15st 1lb / 96kgs
International record: 2 caps (L 2)
Sonny PARKER (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,007)
DoB: 27.08.77. 6'1" / 1.86m. 15st 13lbs / 101kgs
International record: 30 caps (W 15, L 15; 30 pts - 6T)
Tom SHANKLIN (CARDIFF BLUES - Cap No 993)
DoB: 24.11.79. 6'2" / 1.88m. 15st 9lbs / 99kgs
International record: 52 caps (W 25, L 26, D 1; 90 pts - 18T)
Stephen JONES (LLANELLI SCARLETS - Cap No 966)
DoB: 08.12.77. 6'1" / 1.86m. 14st 12lbs / 94kgs
International record: 70 caps (W32, L36, D2; 613 pts - 6T,113C,116PG,3DG)
James HOOK (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,047)
DoB: 27.06.85. 6'0" / 1.83m. 14st 3lbs / 90kgs
International record: 25 caps (W 11, L 13, D 1; 182 pts - 6T,31C,28PG,2DG)
Andrew WILLIAMS (NEWPORT GWENT DRAGONS - Cap No 1,023)
DoB: 07.02.81. 5'10" / 1.78m. 14st 2lb 90kgs
International record: 5 caps (W 3, L 2)
Warren FURY (LONDON IRISH)
DoB: 10.12.85. 6'0" / 1.82m. 13st 7lbs / 86kgs
International record: Uncapped
Ryan JONES (OSPREYS, CAPTAIN - Cap No 1,029)
DoB: 13.03.81. 6'5" / 1.96m. 18st 0lbs / 114kgs
International record: 21 caps (W 13, L 7, D 1; 5 pts - 1T)
Alix POPHAM (LLANELLI SCARLETS - Cap No 1,014)
DoB: 17.10.79. 6'2" / 1.88m. 17st 4lbs / 110kgs
International record: 33 caps (W 13, L 19, D 1; 20 pts - 4T)
Martyn WILLIAMS (CARDIFF BLUES - Cap No 944)
DoB: 01.09.75. 6'0" / 1.83m. 15st 13lbs / 101kgs
International record: 81 caps (W 38, L 40, D 3; 73 pts - 14T, 1DG)
Jonathan THOMAS (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,013)
DoB: 27.12.82. 6'5" / 1.96m. 17st 5lbs / 110kgs
International record: 44 caps (W 22, L 20, D 2; 35 pts - 7T)
Ian EVANS (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,045)
DoB: 04.10.84. 6'8" / 2.04m. 18st 3lbs / 116kgs
International record: 12 caps (W 6, L 5, D 1; 5 pts - 1T)
Alun-Wyn JONES (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,046)
DoB: 19.09.85. 6'5" / 1.96m. 18st 9lbs / 118kgs
International record: 21 caps (W 9, L 12; 15 pts - 3T)
Ian GOUGH (OSPREYS - Cap No 964)
DoB: 10.11.76. 6' 6" / 1.98m. 18st 9lbs / 118kgs
International record: 50 caps (W 23, L 24, D 3; 5 pts - 1T)
Duncan JONES (OSPREYS - Cap No 997)
DoB: 18.09.78. 6'0" / 1.83m. 17st 8lbs / 112kgs
International record: 50 caps (W 23, L 25, D 2)
Gethin JENKINS (CARDIFF BLUES - Cap No 1,006)
DoB: 17.11.80. 6'2" / 1.88m. 18st 9lbs / 118kgs
International record: 58 caps (W 25, L 31, D 2; 15 pts - 3T)
Rhys THOMAS (NEWPORT GWENT DRAGONS - Cap No 1,049)
DoB: 31.07.82. 82. 6'1" / 1.86m. 17st 6lbs / 111kgs
International record: 4 caps (L 3)
Adam Rhys JONES (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,018)
DoB: 08.03.81. 6'0" / 1.83m. 20st 5lb / 129kgs
International record: 48 caps (W 26, L 20, D 2; 5 pts - 1T)
Matthew REES (LLANELLI SCARLETS - Cap No 1,033)
DoB: 09.12.80. 6'0" / 1.83m. 16st 9lbs / 106kgs
International record: 21 caps (W 10, L 10, D 1; 10 pts - 2T)
Huw BENNETT (OSPREYS - Cap No 1,017)
DoB: 11.06.83. 6'0" / 1.83m. 17st 5lbs / 110kgs
International record: 18 caps (W 11, L 7)