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Baboon fencing report released


Baboons on the prowl in the Kom. Photo Alan van Gysen

The Cape Peninsula Baboon Management Joint Task Team (JTT), consisting of representatives from SANParks, CapeNature, and the City of Cape Town, says a baboon-proof fencing summary report is now available for public consideration.


In July 2023, the three spheres of government signed the Memorandum of Agreement that sets the foundation for the cooperation between the three parties for a more sustainable management plan for the Cape Peninsula’s Chacma baboon population.

 

The Baboon Strategic Management Plan (BSMP) was finalised at the end of September 2023. Site visits were recently conducted at Simon’s Town and Scarborough to investigate the feasibility of baboon-proof fencing. These two areas were selected for the initial investigations based on the available funding, terrain, land ownership, environmental authorisations needed, and most importantly: the anticipated return on investment in keeping baboons out of the urban areas, and in their natural habitat, as far as possible.

 

The JTT encourages communities from areas in close proximity to baboons’ natural habitat to download and read the document.

 

The report is available here:

·        SANParks website: https://bit.ly/3rsUrks

·        CapeNature website: https://bit.ly/3PVn7fy

·        City of Cape Town website: https://bit.ly/48r4kQm

 

The report provides:

  • background information on examples of the successful implementation of baboon-proof fencing on the Cape Peninsula

  • what the fencing could look like in terms of height and design to ensure the free movement of small animals

  • key issues to be considered in deciding whether a location is suitable for baboon-proof fencing

  • maps indicating locations that may be considered for baboon-proof fencing on the Cape Peninsula

NOTE: No decisions have been made as yet about where fencing will be considered, or finally implemented.


Way forward:

Residents are also advised that, depending on the location and land ownership, environmental authorisation may be required and that public participation will form part of this process

 

The JTT will present and discuss the proposals in the fencing report with the affected communities in coming months. The first community engagements are proposed to be in October and November with residents from Simon’s Town, Constantia, Murdoch Valley, and Zwaanswyk/Tokai.

 

  • The intention of the engagements with the affected communities is to collaborate on area-specific solutions and strategies applicable to that community 

  • At the community meetings, the JTT will present an analysis of human-baboon conflict issues in the affected neighbourhood/area

  • The JTT intends to propose possible short-, medium- and long-term strategies for the specific area for consideration and discussion by the affected community

  • The affected communities are encouraged to also propose strategies, actions and interventions from their side, and to familiarise themselves with the fencing report

 

The JTT will give more information about the dates and venues for the community engagements well in advance.

 

The intention is to operationalise the BSMP with specific local strategies that address the different needs, circumstances, resources and geographical concerns of affected communities, to ensure these are best suited and most appropriate to their respective areas, and are supported by residents as far as possible.


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