Population ecology and interactions of sympatric large carnivores on farmlands surrounding the Waterberg Plateau Park, Namibia.
Researcher, Waterberg Carnivore Project Namibia
Caribbean Gardens Zoo
Cheetah Conservation Fund
Fulbright Scholarship Program
Government of Namibia , Ministry of Environment and Tourism
Wildlife Conservation Society
The conservation of many carnivores is dependent upon their persistence outside and along the borders of protected areas. In these unprotected areas, the maintenance of carnivores is affected by human attitudes, and tolerances. Therefore, it is essential that researchers are able to accurately assess carnivore density, population structure, and prey selection (i.e. livestock vs. game species) in high-conflict areas. The primary cause of conflict within the north-central farmlands surrounding Namibia ‘s Waterberg Plateau Park (WPP) is perceived and actual predation by carnivores on commercially raised game and livestock. Underlying issues exacerbating this situation include competition for natural resources in this semi-arid environment which protected carnivore species inhabit including leopards ( Panthera pardus ), brown hyenas (Hyaena brunnea), and cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) . Focusing on the farmland surrounding the WPP, the objectives of this study are to: 1) estimate carnivore numbers, 2) evaluate carnivore population structure including movements, and identification of individuals and relatedness, 3) identify intraguild resource partitioning by examining scats and kill sites to determine the prey species consumed and 4) evaluate the costs and potential benefits for farmers maintaining predators on their land.
Last updated August 5, 2010 by