Birds of Prey Programme


Platberg Karoo Raptor Project

The conservancy covers the entire districts of De Aar, Philipstown and Hanover in the southeastern portion of the Northern Cape Province. Although the land in the IBA is primarily used for grazing and agriculture, it includes the suburban towns of De Aar, Philipstown, Petrusville and Hanover. This huge area lies in the plains of the central Great Karoo.

The Platberg Karoo Raptor Project addresses many of the daily threats such as poisoning incidents, vehicle collisions, power line collisions, reservoir drowning and persecution facing raptors in the area. The aim of the project is to conserve raptors, vultures and owls on private land and in the small stock producing community by:

  • Creating a public awareness system whereby members of the public from all different communities are exposed to the conservation message for birds of prey;
  • Minimising negative impacts on raptor populations, including direct and indirect persecution such as trapping, shooting or egg collecting; the misuse of pesticides and poisons and the electrocution or collision with power lines;
  • Creating a positive attitude towards raptors as indicators of a healthy and productive farming ecosystem;
  • Guiding and advising landowners and land managers on ecological farming processes to limit soil erosion and degradation of vegetation through over-utilisation; to limit possible stock predation by mammalian and avian predators through existence of a healthy prey base; to decrease predator populations by limiting scavenging opportunities and to handle all situations of public and raptor conflict in the region.

Project coordinator: Ronelle Visagie - ronellev@ewt.org.za