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PART 10


“JACKAL & LYNX CONTROL”

In this final segment we discuss the laws pertaining to the hunting of predators in South Africa, as well as the conclusion and a final refresher on important aspects of the control and eradication of problem animals. A course will never be complete without sufficient attention been directed towards the law and its complexities. It is important to take note when crossing a border to know the provinces and the laws regarding predators.


 

LAWS

PLEASE NOTE: This may not be correct when you read it as our laws are changing within the hunting industry in South Africa, so please check at your local offices if this is still correct.

Every province of South Africa has different laws regarding predation hunting, strange as it may seem it is indeed so, I find it hard to understand that it is this way, why??? Why not make the law the same; we are in South Africa, not foreign countries, but however strange it may be we must adhere to these regulations.

In the Western Cape we are required by law to have a hunting licence that costs R171-00 and with this hunting licence we can hunt predators on farmer’s lands together with a letter from him that has all relevant information on it, we do not require a permit for using an artificial light (RED) at night. There’s no season on these animals, but we need a hunting license (R171-00) to hunt them.

However the region of the Limpopo Province is different, In Limpopo a land-owner would need a hunting permit for the hunting of a caracal which is now listed as Game under the Limpopo Environmental Management Act 2003, Act 7 of 2003. Land-owners do not pay for hunting permits if they hunt on their own land. Non-Land owners however need to pay the prescribed permit fees. The hunting of black backed jackal can be done by the land-owner without a permit while the non-land owner can hunt such animal with the written permission of the land owner. You do not need a permit to use any form of a spot light. You need permits to hunt the categories of wild animals stated in the Act irrespective if you use a spot light. If you should hunt during the night and you do not have a P3-exemption on your property, you would be required to get an additional permit to hunt at night.

The Eastern Cape  is a follows. There is no hunting season or bag limit for jackal and lynx. This implies that they may be shot during the day. They may only be hunted at night if the hunter is in the possession of a N8 Permit, " A Permit To Hunt Wild Animals By Means Of Prohibited Hunting Method", issued in terms of Sections 29 and 33 of the Nature and Environmental Conservation Ordinance (No 19 of 1974). This permit is issued by one of the District Offices. The hunter has to apply in writing and supply the name of the farm where the hunting will occur. The date must also be supplied. If the hunter is not the owner of the property then written permission form the owner must be obtained. Hunters may hunt with a red light (and tapes) only if they have been granted permission by a N8 Permit.




CONCLUSION & REFRESHER

This course could never have been conducted as a quick course as it is far to involved, so remember if you do a predator calling course with a practising authority one day remember it’s the whole course or nothing. We cannot cut corners on this topic, it’s important to understand in full the methods and equipment required for predator control. All the information I have given and commented on in this 10 part article comes with over 22 years of experience.  Everything I speak about is from time well spent in the field; nothing has been fabricated or thought up as I have gone along. The one client commented to me that I am giving to many secrets away. But why!, this is no competition, so if I can help I will, after all we are all fighting the same war with predators.

When I began hunting I had a few calls, a few pieces of camo clothing and other goodies, it was simple to get ready for a hunt, but as the years go by we collect so much junk, its then harder to decide what to wear and take to go calling, my opinion is as follows. Buy the best equipment you can afford, keep it simple, get 5-6 calls, 2 sets of camo clothes and netting with a good light, then it’s is a simple choice every time you hunt. You may not understand what I mean, but wait 5 years, and then you will have collected so much stuff it gets confusing and you will stand in your room not knowing what to take or wear. So simple is better.

As hunters, game farmers & conservationists we owe it upon ourselves to concentrate on predation control, South Africa has a huge amount of wildlife and predators threaten the future of our conservational growth every day, its estimated that jackal kill over 850,000 sheep a year, they eat more mutton than people living in a small city, these are figures of many years ago, so chances are now it’s a lot worse, on many farms jackals no longer have a specific area, some farms suffer hugely with predation. So only one way is target specific and it is not poison or gin traps, ONLY calling!. To be able to efficiently hunt predators will save the game farmer a lot of possible financial lose

Work it out, lets take a single lynx, he lives for 13-14 years in the wild, when reaching 2 years has fully matured, lets say he kills one lamb every week ( these figures are VERY incorrect, they should be more). So, he kills a lamb once a week, we have 52 weeks in a year, times by 13-14 years. This amounts to the total of 728 sheep he kills in 14 years. So you do the sums of how much that costs a sheep farmer. It’s in access of R300-000, but actually if I WAS TO BE REALISTIC it would be a lot more. Many farmers lose 7-8 per night etc, a friend of mine lost 53 lambs in one night! And to end the figures, now work out how much wool is lost and how many farmers we have in South Africa all losing lambs, buck, goats every day. Also remember not all stock cost R350 a head, breeding studs cost far more

By correctly introducing the youth of today to gods great outdoors will ensure that we teach them the correct methods of predation control, knowing that for generations to come we can rely on them to correctly control problem animals.

It is of importance to always consult with the farmer and determine his problem animals; it is no use eradicating animals that pose no threat. If you have a friendly community organise a possible hunting club, get a few individuals together, form a club and hunt together as a team, BUT make sure all the hunters know how to call and what sounds to use at what time of the year, no use causing more damage than good. Organise a few days a month when the moons correct and do a sweep on the farm. Try the blind idea I mentioned, it works. Work four farms in four nights in a row, try to get a pattern going, working as teams and try different tactics. One month call late night and the next try as it gets light.

Use different sounds from what other people are using, try completely different techniques, call maybe very late at night, this is not normally an active period  but try, you never know, call at 2 in the morning, try different things.

Take my advice ALWAYS go to the best place first, set up and await darkness. Keep all movement to a minimum, have patience, listen for disturbances in the night like a bird taking off, this indicates something disturbed it. If you go to a spot in the dark and camo up, know were you will stop so you don’t find you parked near a tree when putting on the light for the first time.

We will never eradicate predators completely but we can control them and keep the numbers down, and remember to not become your own worst enemy, try protect your stock, don’t leave gates open, close holes in the fences, for instance don’t put sheep in camps that has Lucerne and greenery, the porcupines will dig holes under the fence thus allowing predators to get through.

Kraal the sheep and goats if at all possible. Try putting donkeys in sheep and game camps, this helps to keep predation down on stock. Donkeys tend to feel the father figure and will attack jackals and cats- (see the internet). Donkeys are often put in camps with soon to be born calves, it helps against predators. If you have predator problems try not put Dorper sheep in these camps, they are weaker than Marino’s and will not stand their ground like a Marino.

KEEP WARM AT NIGHT

Here’s a few tricks of the trade to keep warm, sit on a cushion rather than steel, hold the front lens of the torch after it is off, by calling you are warmer than the others sitting down, sit on the same spot every time, move your toes in the shoes, keep your neck and ears warm. Put a green/ brown sheet around the back before putting on the camo net, it keeps the cold out. While you take down the nets and pack the back of the truck after a hunt start the truck so it idles in the mean time, then you can get into a warm cab when leaving. Wear ladies stockings under your pants, its warm. If at all possible, if you are calling cats and wind direction is of no importance, park the truck so that the back of the truck faces the incoming wind. That curtain you have up will protect you from the direst cold wind and keep you warmer. Don’t think that more clothes will keep you warm, if you wear too much clothing your body won’t generate enough heat to warm up all the clothes, thus you will be cold, wear a fair amount of clothing. Also remember that hot water bottle trick, and being rubber it will also hide your scent.

If you stay on a farm that has predator problems, get out as often as you can, use the time and put in as much effort as you can, the more effort you put in controlling predators the less lose you will have. Keep control over your borders and fences. I hunted a farm one day, and the game farmer had a dust road running along side his fence all the way around his property, every morning he drove around the farm and inspected the fence, this way he kept a firm control over his camps. Work together as a team with other farmers nearby, join ranks / stand together, hunt ethically/ preserve Africa’s wildlife. DON’T USE POISON/ GIN TRAPS.

Avoid becoming your own worst enemy, many farmers offer fowl and pheasant shooting on their properties, if you farm with sheep this is not a very clever idea, because the fowl and pheasants are the natural food source of a lynx or predator so by you removing his natural food will result in that lynx preying more upon your lambs and other stock.

Predators do not  think like us, they don’t plan for tomorrow, they are unpredictable and are a constant challenge, this makes them far more hated, but however desperate we become we must not go the route of poison or gin traps, this way we will cause far more damage than doing good. If you shoot or trap a jackal and lynx remove the bladders and intestines, use it for lures or scents; don’t just throw the animal in a hole. Use the predator to catch more, also try keeping the fur and selling the skins. Drag dead Jackal with slit open stomach behind the truck from one stand to the next, then go back that same way, see what’s near that roadside, often you will see a jackal etc.

Remember the importance of making a challenge sound more interesting by adding a fight to the sound; this will get the attention of the dominant dog in the area, or ad in a female whimper to imitate a foreign jackal

mating with his partner. Adding more realism to your sounds will increase your odds. Also remember if calling in breeding season a pair of adult dogs may be a little far away from you so call longer at a stand to allow them time to get to you. This will also be important in October when the mother is with pups underground and the male is walking around looking for food, give him time to get to you.

This is a tip a professional caller from America taught me long ago, I will never forget it. After you have shot a jackal, NEVER just discard it straight away, ESPECIALLY if it’s a male. If you are hunting in months of late April to July-August take note of the overall condition of a male jackal you have shot. If you find the male dog to be in a overall good condition with no general fight marks etc this could very well be the dominant dog in your area, BUT if you find one with ears that are chewed or pretty recent damage this is an intruder jackal, a dog trying to get into the dominant dogs area. This will mean that you still have a dominant dog out in your areas someplace. This is a very good method to identify intruders from dominant dogs.

Use the times of the year properly and match sounds with the Jackals yearly cycle, your results will be far better. Don’t use the incorrect sounds.

Subscribe to a predator magazine, you have a very large choice to choose from, and the amount of  tips you pick up from these overseas magazines are extremely valuable, just last week I got my latest edition and learnt something about cat hunting that was so obvious yet I did not think about it. So, no matter how long we hunt we can still learn. A few excellent magazines are Varmint masters, Predator Extreme, Varmint Hunter Magazine, Fur Fish & Game and Predator Hunting Magazine. Also look on the internet under predators; it is mind blowing how much information is available.

Try organise a day in the month when your neighbours get together for a braai, discuss the problems at hand and  chat about calling etc, I can promise you it will be beneficial to all as you will learn more tricks and tips from each other.  Don’t hold back on ideas because remember that a jackal or cat has no home, he walks around, he will kill  stock anywhere he finds them, so one jackal is Everybody’s problem. (  WEAR FULL CAMO FOR DAY HUNTS!  )

Get yourself a calling package, spend a little money, buy quality equipment, and be prepared for the action!  

I can honestly say that after you have completed a course on all the mentioned areas we have discussed in these editions, you will feel far more confident and determined to succeed in hunting jackal, if you have tried to hunt them before this with no success you will have by now discovered from these editions exactly what you did wrong.

We all learn by our mistakes like I did. Just last week I learnt another thing that I have added to my knowledge to outsmart predators, and so will you also become far more familiar with calling as the years go by.

If you feel that you still would like to get psychically involved by going on a course, or you want to have MORE INFORMATION on calling and the sounds and how they sound etc, feel free to contact me anytime, I will be more than willing to help you or give you a demonstration on calling sounds. We stock all the equipment you will need to start hunting these predators.

When I began to hunt I called many nights, I even tried calling cats on a moon bright night, that is how dumb I really was, I think my call I used and the sounds I made must have scared all predators out of the district completely!  But I learnt. My very first predator I ever call was a cat, he came in and sat behind me after 45 minutes, and it took me about 6 calling stands to achieve that- THEN I WAS HOOKED FOREVER!!!!!!!! 

When I started it was more of a fun thing, going out at night, calling and spending time in the outdoors, but it soon became very evident to me that if I took it more seriously I would have more results and even more fun collecting that fur. So, I changed my outlook on life and calling these pests. I then began keeping     records and buying more calls with money taken from killing the odd predator. So while by friends were out in bars drinking I spent my nights out calling and learning.

Today, I use the very best equipment I can get; I still use a system I used when I started hunting, the system I have explained in these editions. And carry out a hunt with the basics, and never change them as they work, I believe in the following four words! SIMPLE, BASICS, PATIENCE, AMBITION.  The SBPA is a system I have gone by for years and it works, keeping the hunt simple, keeping to basics, having patience and ambition will be the result of having fur on your truck after a hunt, and after using the above four magic words you should have good results.

To conclude I want to emphasise that it is important to understand that in order to learn how to efficiently hunt problem animals you must be taught correctly, I know a few individuals who hunt and they claim to be professional, however I would never refer any client to these individuals. Most of these people have the worst sales service and general customer service I have ever encountered. I once ordered a light from one of these professional people and it took me 4 days to get an overnight tracking number and my post I should have got the next day arrived a week later.  It is important that if you book yourself on a course that the individual is carefully screened. Once you have been taught incorrectly and afterwards do another course it is hard to separate fabrication and fiction from the correct methods. So, rather not confuse yourself – book yourself in with a professional company first time around, do a course and learn the correct methods. This 10 part series is THE course I offer; it is well structured and has EVERYTHING you will ever need in regards to valuable knowledge.

NOTED

To end I would like to say that not enough is done in South Africa to combat predation, we have Nature Conservation that in my book simply does not care AT ALL about farmers with troubles, when last did you ever see an officer from the famous Nature Conservation out and about or knocking on the farmhouse door to say “HULLO,  I AM PIET SKIET from NC, and I am here to find out about predation and if you have any trouble” man if that happened we would fall over backwards and die of a heart attack. Simply because they don’t seem to care at all, don’t have anybody to do that job or teach people. Hell, even on many so called PROFESSIONAL HUNTERS courses nobody teaches hunting predators,  BUT they all claim to be professional hunters, in my book that’s all a load of hogwash, that a guy becomes a professional from 10 days in a classroom, I have been in the bush for over 25 years and still learning today! If you claim to be a professional hunter then you must know how to hunt period, but that’s not covered.

I even had a well known writer from a magazine tell me one day that they “don’t want articles about calling predators as nobody is interested in that shit”. 

Predation control is the most important part of conservation, as we have lots of game in South Africa that needs to be protected, and he says nobody is interested.

Somewhere along the line we have gone far from the problems at hand, and something needs to be done about predation, I am including below this a letter and an action plan I made up for conservation.

The sad thing about this was nobody came back to me, and an official that promised a lot simply also vanished, why? Well again – BECAUSE NOBODY CARES about the farmer in South Africa, have a read below here, you will really enjoy what I said and offered (just a pity nobody listened).

Jackal / Lynx control plan 2009

I thought that I would put this document on my website, as it is all about what the government or conservation can do to help us stock farmers who are going through hell trying to combat jackal / lynx.

I wrote this letter and the plan to various departments of government – no reply, then to conservation, after 2 weeks I called them, they said they forgot to get back to me, then promised to do so after that – again nothing happened.

I contacted a few various people in government (all e mails I kept) one such person promised to come see me, NOTHING.

I tried for over 6 months to present my plan of action.

I have given up, but here is all what I proposed, it makes interesting reading. I got tired of banging my head against the wall!

As far as I am concerned nobody cares about farmers, and nothing is done to help us !

Overseas they have (government) specially paid people permanently controlling predators.

READ ON!

My original letter :

----- Original Message -----

From: G Laubscher

To:  XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Sent: Monday, August 06, 2007 8:05 PM

Subject: Jackal, Lynx & Rooikat

Dear Sir

I wish to consult with the XXXXXXXX regarding the prevalence of predation by jackal, lynx and rooikat as this has now developed into a full-blown problem throughout South Africa. This topic now deserves PROPER discussion and answers.

Not enough (if anything at all) is being done by XXXXXXXX   in controlling problem animals, as there are not QUALIFIED and experienced people employed to put a stranglehold on this problem.

I have an idea that I would like to share with NC and and hope we will be able to explore this together. I have been in the business of controlling of jackal & lynx since 1984 and am the only person in South Africa doing this professionally every day every month as a business. This includes controlling, hunting, trapping, giving courses and manufacturing ALL items used for ETHICAL PREDATION CONTROL.

I have a solution to this problem and NC could find it of interest, both with regards to cage trapping and jackal eradication.

I promote only ethical practices and have a very good name throughout South Africa. 

Jackal now kill more than 850,000 sheep a year in South Africa; then they kill other game as well; and the wool lost by the farmer is also a factor.  A single jackal could cost a farmer between R35,000 and R40,000 per year!!!! And then there's lynx that kill more than jackal do! I personally know a farmer who, in one night, lost 53 lambs to a lynx. I can give you the farmer's telephone number - he will support my claim. If a single farmer could sustain such a loss in one night, you can imagine how severe the figures would be if thousands of farmers across the country sustain that kind of stock loss of lamb, sheep and antelope.

The time has now come that problem animals be confronted head on and that plans be put in place for controlling of these vermin, as not enough is being done by NC to provide a solution to the problem. But I can offer you a solution to this problem, a solution that will work.

The time has come to put plans together and get involved far more than NC has been up to now, I have been on farms since 1984, and in all these years I have NEVER seen an official around who showed any interest regarding these animals. I have never met an official who has come to any farm I deal with and asked about problems with predation. It is in the best interest of XXXXXXX  that I am drafting this letter, as predators are now at an all-time high AND are costing South African farmers millions every year. 

There is a solution to this. If you would like to know what it is, I am willing to share the answers with you - as, in my opinion, is that NC is failing to see the big picture in South Africa and is failing to learn from other countries.

If you punch in my name plus the words 'trapping or calling jackal' on the Google search-engine,you will see articles and other conservation issues I have raised. Trust me, if you want a solution to this problem growing larger everyday you will want to hear what I have to say.

I remember 5 years ago if I called and shot a male jackal over 5 years old in good condition (alpha male), all the others I killed that night would be far away from that spot; NOW I call and kill 3 to 5 males within a kilometre. Those days of a jackal having its 20-kilometre area is gone - during my last

hunt I called in and shot 26 jackals in 9 hours; at one place I killed 5 males out of 7 jackals - this makes you think!

This issue needs to be addressed and steps taken to ensure a steady and proper farm / conservation growth on stock farms. Qualified people are needed who can lead the way to get farmers back on track and not give up hope, as many farmers are now even altering farming practices so they no longer need to farm cattle and suffer severe losses to predators.

If I ran a department concentrating on predation control in the Western Cape, it would take me one year and in that year I would have changed the way farmers look at a profitable sheep farm. After one year stock farms will show profit, whereas now it is a losing battle. I have excellent solutions to this ever-present problem, a solution I am willing to share with you. It is important to talk the language of farmers, to understand them and how they think. At this time 99% of all districts has a problem; if a farmer has predation problems who can he approach for help? How many  XXXXXXX officials are professionally trained to call or trap Jackal / Lynx? And I don't mean knowing the simple ways to hunt them, I mean professional predator calling?

The XXXXXXX Cape needs a shake up - badly. I am in Cape Town for a few weeks if you wish to meet and discuss the issue of predation control. I look forward to hearing from you

Regards

Gary Laubscher

sellis@telkomsa.net

www.africanpredator.com

0824853885

Professional Predation Controller, Certified hunter - Since 1984

Feather & Fur Game Calls

Ethical and anti-gin-trap / anti-poison campaigner        

NOTHING HAPPENED WITH THIS LETTER ABOVE – IT NEVER EVEN GOT A REPLY !!!!!!!!

HERE IS MY ORIGINAL PLAN – As you will see this took days to prepare – it never even got a reply!!!!! South Africa is a lovely country just full of good service - yeh right!

Conservation plan 2008 –
PREDATION CONTROL - WESTERN CAPE

I

t was duly noted in the 1900’s that jackal cost the SA farming community over 350,000 sheep a year; today that figure is far exceeded, and the numbers are now closer to 900,000 sheep yearly that are lost. The lynx kills more than the jackal, as cats kill for fun and often do not eat their kills at all. Then there is the cost of all the wool which goes lost, so we are talking huge figures.It is now time is act and put plans into action. This is my personal outlook at this matter and, as a professional who talks to farmers every day; I know what they need, and how they think. This is an outline of an action plan I would implement if I were employed by Nature Conservation.

In the 10-part courses that I offer, I give the farmer insight into the world of predators. The 10-part series is by far (if not the best) the most comprehensive A-Z course on calling/ trapping offered today in South Africa. To date I have not seen any others that could compare with what I offer. After trainees have completed my course they will feel confident and know 99% more than they did when they began the course.

Here is what I would put in place if I were in a position to set goals and implement measures to reduce predation - nothing will be achieved without conducting the following:

 

Goals:

   To establish a central office called PREDATOR CONTROL & SERVICES or something similar - it   must have a distinctive name that stands out, so it can be easily found.

   To form an office with a suitably qualified officer.

   To develop a section on the NC website regarding the new office and its activities.

   To form a work plan and outline all aspects that will take place in the immediate future.

   To make sure farmers have a 24-hour call line, and to ensure that the telephone directories list the new office and name.

   To publish a small newsletter 4 times a year –i.e.  Quarterly – that can be sent to Co-ops, etc. This can indicate details of coming meetings.

   To have a trained person who can take enquiries if the officer is not in the office.

   To make it known that there is a predator officer; and to explain to farmers the new developments and give them his contact details.

   To divide up districts, organise farmer weekends, and inform co-ops about developments.

   To organise meetings and train farmers over a day, to call and to trap.

   To organise a special monthly meeting that allows the officer to meet different key role players in specified areas/ districts and address problems that are prevalent.

   To teach farmers how to make their own trapping lures for cage trapping that work.

   To reveal resources to farmers where exactly they can purchase equipment that can help them with the control of predators.

   To give farmers advice and develop a plan that farmers can implement with neighbours to combat predation. (This is a trade secret of mine).

   To teach 3-5 official guys at every co-op to trap and call lynx. The official promotion of cage trapping will also help stop farmers using gin traps AND POISON!

   To educate farmers about the bad effects of using gin traps and poisons.

   To teach 3-5 people on farms how to trap and call properly so they can be contacted if needed. They must be professionally taught by NC.

   To collect names and contact numbers of trained people so if farmers call they can be referred to the specific NC-taught people.

   To meet local co-op owners and other relevant stakeholders and discuss latest developments.

   To have a stall at a local farming weekend so they can see that a predator department is operating.

   To meet at Agri Shows and have booths.

   To have standard letters printed that are placed in Libraries and Police Stations in the country towns for farmers to see.

   To train people personally that go to farms on a contract, in response to leads provided by NC; these people must be thoroughly trained in trapping and calling by Nature Conservation. In the Western Cape 5 individual people will need to be trained to access places that cannot be reached by trained NC officials from co-ops.

   To have a group of government hunters / trappers permanently paid by NC with the sole responsibility of hunting.

   To make one trip a month to a central venue someplace and organise to teach farmers, have a farmers’ day and meet and discuss problems.

   To have various equipment available that can be used as loan equipment to farmers, like cages, for example, so if a farmer close by has a problem, NC can set 4-5 cages for a while if farmers don’t have PROPER cages.

   To give all co-op businesses in the Western Cape a course and demonstrate cage trapping and how it’s done, also calling predators with calls and lights. To explore the option that bounty is paid on predators taken and, after they are tanned, these can be sold to help bring in currency from abroad, I KNOW PERSONALLY how much Americans pay for jackal skins, and 99% of farmers throw the dead jackals/ cats in a hole and bury them!

   To provide an incentive for all workers who are trained by NC that work at co-ops, for instance, for every fur taken, and ensure that every fur taken must be logged at a local police station so claims cannot be duplicated.

   FINALLY – and an important aspect here is after this has all been implemented, to start working on a plan that will remove all gin traps and poison from society and to legalize trapping via cages ONLY, and for a selected few who use gin traps that these traps are serial-numbered and controlled by NC, and also to make it ILLEGAL to sell gin traps over the counter in CO Ops.

There is plenty work that is needed to be done in connection with GIN TRAPS / POISONS, and this will have to be explored in more and finer detail after this first part is implementent

The main officer who heads up this department must get directly involved and when farmers close by have problems, he must be able to go out and help – call or trap if time is afforded. This will show the community that Nature Conservation is willing to dedicate a lot of time to individual farmers with a solitary problem. So, it is vital that the person heading up this department is an informed and experienced professional.

Crows

Crows have also become a problem in the Western Cape and can be found everywhere; it is  easy to hunt these pests if you know how. I personally call and shoot 700-800 crows a year. Farmers need to be trained and educated as to how to hunt these pests.

A professional crow hunter needs to train farmers so they can, in turn, teach others - and they need to know what equipment to use.

Media

Start spreading the word on outdoor/nature programmes about the new development and get it broadcast nationally so all farmers are aware of the planned action for the coming year.

The media is a good option when we are doing well, and they will help spread the word faster than we can do ourselves.  Placing small informative adverts in farming magazines will also spread the word.

Karoo: Black-Backed Jackals

The same applies, EXCEPT farmers are taught in detail how to call through courses offered by Nature Conservation and the courses are offered at a very low premium so if a farmer chooses not to come and learn, he has no room to complain about stock loss. All the farmer pays for is a basic cost to cover written material.

Farmers are shown the finer points on calling predators and full demonstrations are given.

A comprehensive course is offered (like the one I offer) where A – Z is covered. All equipment must be demonstrated, including all the latest gadgets from the US (like I use). It is imperative that we keep up with the times. Many farmers use CD’s to call in predators – that’s old technology; new  and far easier options are available.

The formation of predator hunting clubs are established in South Africa and regulated by NC and these clubs will become contactable by farmers who have jackal / lynx troubles, so all areas are controlled.

Farmers in their own communities must be advised on how to form a group / association with members who are known to one another. The groups will implement a strategy that incorporates regular hunts, sweeping the areas on various dates every month, and also helping to keep poaching down to a minimum. On my courses I explain this idea with a special plan with actual footage that shows how it works!

Website

It is recommended to have all information on a website regarding calling predators (like I have on mine). So, a farmer can log onto the NC website and read about the latest equipment available to control predators, and also see when and where meetings are to be held.

The website must have the year’s planned actions on it so the farming community can see what has been planned and that something is being done to improve the way the community sees Nature Conservation.

 I am the official promoter of American Foxpro electronic callers in South Africa; it is the very best predator game caller in the world - I use them and promote them. I have all the units on my website, and this and all my other information gets me between 25-40 hits a day on my website. The internet helps in a big way, and can be beneficial to farmers.

 I AM prepared to share parts of my site with NC if the need arises; I also have a 10-part course on my website, and it took me 9 months to write up – but well worth it. I write for a magazine in S Africa and I also promote my course material through that.  I can also provide a link from your website to mine, so farmers can see other options etc.

 

The addition of an active FORUM to the predator website is vital, so interested farmers can log on and see topics, comment and ask questions, etc. This is vital on the website and will serve the province extremely well.

NATURE CONSERVATION

After all these pointers have been followed through, a further plan of action should be implemented that will also get others involved in this occupation.

To have a sponsored truck, rigged out with all the necessary equipment and manned by qualified staff, making stops throughout the Karoo or local areas offering crash courses on trapping and calling and all other relevant aspects. This ‘road show’ can make an enormous contribution to reducing predation in all the towns that it visits.  This will need planning and selection of venues, but cannot be other than a success!

This is just another way of getting education out to farm owners and forming an important bond with them. 

General Comment:

I speak to the farming community every day; I was even asked to be a guest speaker in Prieska on December 4th 2007. And throughout all my daily dealings with them, from selling items to giving advise, I am told of the enormous challenges they face; the days are gone that a jackal has a 25-kilometre area of its own - now jackals are competing for territory and are tripling in numbers every year. Something needs to be done now, and plans put in place, plans that will work for the community and for conservation.

By talking with farmers everyday I can tell by sales exactly what areas have more problems than others, and if I look at records say of 6 years ago and how many items were sold then compared to now, it is obvious that problems have escalated. We must get plans in action that can assist farmers and NC must play a more direct and personal role, and make sure that everybody can get involved and help remove predation.

 The bottom line is all this needs to be handled by a qualified person with years of field experience and who understands farmers. This department will be VERY WELCOME in farming circles and you will get their full support.

A concrete relationship must be established with the farming community through the marketing of this new division – and a future with less frustrated farmers will start to emerge.

A qualified person needs to be assigned this task; the task is no easy feat, and will take dedication and long hours. It will require a single person - with the help of assistant that will need to be taught so that he can stand in for the key person where necessary. The most suitable person for this responsible position will be someone who is already known amongst farmers for his knowledge of predation and his ability to relate to the predation problems that they are experiencing.

The secret to all this is EXPOSURE to the farming community, to teach them how to remove predators and to get involved with training, to offer comprehensive Jackal / lynx courses and become the farmers’ friend and have them know that we have a predator department that can help and refer trained callers / trappers to help them if they cannot address the problem themselves.

It is vital that you have a few trained individuals that have been trained under the auspices of Nature Conservation and are available to all the farming towns throughout the Western Cape. At the end of the day after all areas have been covered you will have a Western Cape with trained individuals in every town, and controlling predation will be far easier

Giving farmers proper instruction will help them remove predators at a far better rate than they are now doing, and having a contact person who talks their language will be welcomed; if farmers call NC they can talk to a person who can advise or refer them to trained officers.  This system can be duplicated in other areas of South Africa and the key people at those offices can be trained; that would say something for the WESTERN CAPE!

Trying to solve the problem with a quick-fix solution is not going to work. A professional hunter may have passed professional hunting school, but this does not mean that he knows the first thing about how to control predation. For this strategy to work staff need to be suitably qualified and experienced so that they can, in turn, train others.

Predation affects ALL aspects of conservation in some way.

 

Thank you for reading these pages. I trust you will see how this will benefit farmers and what exactly Nature Conservation needs to put in place to make the system work.

Gary Laubscher

Feather & Fur VHT / Game Calls

www.africanpredator.com

sellis@telkomsa.net

0824853885

After months of sending mails, contacting all kinds of people, trying to get anyplace at all, I have eventually given up, tired of banging my head against the wall, as nobody really cares about us farmers and our troubles.

To end here is a point – to use the roads we buy a car licence, to watch TV we buy a TV licence, and then Nature Conservation wants R171-00 per year for a hunting licence to shoot jackal in Western Cape, BUT NOW I ASK YOU, what do we get for that R171-00????

I will say no more!!!

This article / 10 part series was compiled by Gary Laubscher; All the equipment I use and speak about in these editions is my personal property, I have not been given any rewards to mention anybody’s calls, camo or electronics etc. What I mentioned in this series is my personal honest opinion.

Please note that this 10 part course is written with regards to PROBLEM ANIMALS namely Black backed jackal, Silver jackal, African Wildcat and Lynx. I make no reference to any other kind of animal. All methods and equipment used and mentioned in this series is of an ethical nature and no cruelty to any animal is advocated. Poisons and gin traps are not target specific only calling is.

For more information call me at 0824853885 or e mail at sellis@telkomsa.net . See www.africanpredator.com

 

WARNING

 

NO PART OF THIS SERIES CAN BE COPIED, PRINTED, EDITED, SOLD, PUBLISHED without the written consent of Feather & Fur. This series is all COPYRIGHT.

 

 


 

 

All contents copyright 2008. African Predator.