Game farmers and ranchers who get permits from CapeNature to introduce extralimital (alien to the area) wildlife species must take note of the fact that they undertake (in writing) to do habitat monitoring after the introduction of the desired animals. This monitoring is outlined in the risk assessment report that the farmer has to get an expert to do in order to get approval for the introduction of extralimital wildlife.
Conservation Management Services (CMS) (Ken Coetzee, Wallie Stroebel and Bruce Taplin) have done many such risk assessment plans for game ranchers in the GCBR and beyond but they are concerned that none of the game ranchers appear to be doing the required monitoring. To date CapeNature have been lenient about this but CMS fears that renewals of Adequate Enclosure Certificates, applications for game transport permits and in fact all kinds of permits will in future only be issued if the landowner (those who have permitted extralimital animals) has been doing the required habitat monitoring and can show the results.
We do not recommend that CapeNature be tested on this, the consequences could be damaging to the industry in general, the GCBR in particular, and to everyone involved. The relevant game farmers and ranchers are urged to consult their plans, see what monitoring was approved for their particular operation and then get it done. The techniques are really simple and will not take up much time to implement and help is but a telephone call away.
Giraffe is an extralimital species in the Western Cape province.
(Photo: Sue Dean)