What? The Greater Mapungubwe Lion Project is an initiative by local stakeholders in the Greater Mapungubwe Transfrontier Conservation Area to secure the future of one of South Africa's few remaining free-roaming Lion population. Find our facebook page at www.facebook.com/thegreatermapungubwelionproject.
Where? The Greater Mapungubwe Transfrontier Conservation Area (GMTFCA) measures approximately 4,872 km2 in extent, of which 1,350 km2 (28%) is in Botswana, 2,561 km2 (53%) is in South Africa and 960 km2 (19%) is in Zimbabwe. The boundaries of the three different countries are marked with the Shashe River in between Botswana and Zimbabwe and the Limpopo River forms the border between South Africa and Botswana and South Africa and Zimbabwe.
The area is home to free-roaming Elephants, Leopards, Cheetahs, Lions, Wild Dogs, Brown Hyenas and Spotted Hyenas.
Who? The Greater Mapungubwe Lion Project is supported and managed by local stakeholders in the GMTFCA. Green Dogs Conservation is managing the project and is working closely together with Andrei Snyman from the Predator Management Group in the Northern Tuli Game Reserve, but stakeholders as Mopane Bush Lodge, Galagos Wildlife Conservation, Klein Bolayi Game Lodge, Mapungubwe National Park and representatives of Wildlife Trade and Regulation, Peace Parks and the Endangered Wildlife Trust are part of the network.
Why? The Lion population in the GMTFCA is one of the few last free-roaming lion populations in South Africa. A genetic study by PhD – student Susan Millar (TUT) on lion genetics on small reserves in South Africa, shows that these Lions vary genetically from other populations within South Africa and are therefore very important for the South Africa Lion gene pool.
There is, however, significant conflict between the Lions and people, and every year a significant number are illegally killed, and there is also permitted hunting in some areas that may be above a sustainable level. The project aims to safeguard the future of this population in a number of ways. Firstly, there will be a comprehensive survey of the Lion population on all sides of the GMTFCA. This will include scat surveys, call-ups and a total count from photographs. We also intend to deploy satellite collars on key individual Lions as both a means of monitoring, and of setting up mitigation measures by being able to inform farmers if Lions are moving near their livestock and help them better protect their livestock. Collars on Lions are also known to confer some degree of protection from illegal hunting.
How? We are looking for YOU! In order to secure the future of these Lions we are looking for funding to thoroughly survey the GMTFCA for Lions with Conservation Detection Dogs. The dogs are trained to find scats which can then be sent off for individual identification so we know how many Lions utilise the GMTFCA. Furthermore, and very importantly, we want to set up a Lion Response System. We are looking for 10 GPS-collar in total ($4000,- each) to put on certain individuals so we can keep track of their movement. If the Lion puts foot on intolerant farmlands we can give a forewarning to the farmer and move the Lion off to safer grounds.
We need your help! If you are interest in getting involved and would like to support this project PLEASE contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Small donations will go a long way!!