s were killed in the last year of the Orangjejag than ever before. In other words, the mass slaughter certainly devastated wildlife populations – but did not eliminate the clever predators.
Unfortunately, the Bothma Report was only completed after government had already decided to give in to the farmers’ demands. Citing food security as an overriding factor, government pressed Cape Nature to sign a Protocol with farmers’ representatives, permitting livestock farmers to form district-wide hunt clubs and to use gin traps, guns, poison and even helicopters to assault the province’s predators.
One would expect that the Bothma Report would have knocked out the Protocol and saved our wildlife from persecution but politicians everywhere are more interested in votes that in science.
If government does not care about the science, perhaps it will care about losing votes. South Africans who care about their wildlife heritage should talk to their MP’s.
(There is indeed a threat to food security in S.A. but it is not caused by jackal and caracals. In my humble opinion it is caused instead by political ideology and populist demand – the national government’s Land Reform Programme.)
Our wildlife heritage is under