Southern Bald Ibis programme
Southern Bald Ibis (Geronticus calvus) is endemic to southern Africa with a restricted range centered on the Drakensberg. It is listed as vulnerable because of small population size (probably not more than 2000 breeding pairs), being endemics (only occurring in north-eastern South Africa, Lesotho and western Swaziland) and having a restricted distribution (high altitude grasslands). The population underwent a rapid decline over the past century. The main threats are to their grassland habitat, through commercial afforestation, intensive crop farming, open-cast mining and dense human settlement. Hunting and disturbance, especially at breeding colonies, are also major threats.
Our conservation activities are based on the following objectives:
Reduce the rate of conversion of grassland foraging areas to cultivated land.
- Reduce the rate of afforestation of grassland foraging areas.
- Determine affects of different burning and grazing regimes on SBI habitat.
- Investigate the role of pesticides on the reduction of prey availability.
- Maintain the current number of breeding colonies and pairs.
- Identify and investigate factors adversely affecting reproductive success of SBI.
- Set up a GIS database of all active and historical breeding colonies.
- Prepare a map showing historical and potential foraging habitat available to the SBI.
- Establish guidelines for landowners & avitourism operators to protect breeding colonies.
For more information, please contact Dr Hanneline Smit-Robinson,
Conservation Manager/Oppenheimer Fellow of Conservation, email@example.com
Eskom is the Species Champion for Southern Bald Ibis conservation in South Africa