The Landmark Foundation’s leopard and predator research project was initiated in 2004 and addresses the persecution of predators and leopards in particular, by having established a leopard rescue, rehabilitation, release and research program. To date we have saved 38 leopards from certain death, but have also lost 36 leopards in that time to gin-traps, poisons and hunting. 23 leopards have been collared with GPS devices, making the research project one of the largest wild leopard research studies.
The leopard (Panthera pardus) is a protected species. They are often the last remaining top predator in much of their range as is the situation in the Eastern and Western Cape. Therefore, they play an essential role in the ecosystem. Ensuring that leopards remain in the system other species, from antelope to plants and soil, are also automatically conserved. These animals are not restricted to protected areas and obstacles such as fences are easily crossed. The loss of habitat and persecution by humans are the two major factors that cause leopard and other species to diminish and become extinct in many areas.
What we do:
Less than 20% of South Africa’s landscape is protected, our efforts are not limited to these fragments. We focus on establishing regional scale connectivity of leopard populations across the country by working with private landowners who make up 80% of South Africa’s land and host 80% of the countries biodiversity. Here we ensure that leopard along with other species have habitat available to safeguard their survival for future generations while human-predator conflict is also dealt with in an effective, wildlife friendly manner. Our research indicates that these animals are indeed in need of conservation priority and immediate action.
We work to expand habitats for predators through the establishment of private nature reserves and participating progressive farmers. Habitat loss threatens many species and by making certain development is ecologically sensitive we protect biodiversity for future generations to benefit from our heritage.
Landmarks Main Objectives:
- Rescue, Rehabilitation and Release of injured species
- Advocacy to ban gin traps, hunting dog packs and poison traps
- Research into leopard ecology and management at landscape level i.e. facilitation of wildlife friendly farms – where agricultural businesses are equipped with sustainable wildlife management tools.
- Instituting ethical and ecologically acceptable management methodologies on participating farms
- Developing a green brand (Fair Game) for the retail sectors and to enable consumer awareness whereby individuals are able to participate by being offered an ethically conscious choice and thereby make a difference at every purchase opportunity.
- Raising awareness and Educational programs for scholars and the general public regarding predators, often using art and culture to highlight issues and promote our natural heritage
- Increasing suitable landscape / habitat for predators and biodiversity outside of protected areas
If you wish to read the full information about the landmark Foundation – please download the document:
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