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Regulation of Agro-Chemicals to Avert Killing of Non-Target Species – Vultures as Case Study (Botswana)


Titre : Regulation of Agro-Chemicals to Avert Killing of Non-Target Species – Vultures as Case Study (Botswana)

Pays : Botswana

Numéro projet : BOT/SGP/OP5/STAR/PP/13/12

Domaine : Chemicals

Durée : 9/2013 — 9/2016

Bénéficiaire : Cape Vultures Environmental Association

The Cape Vulture (Gyps coprotheres) is a species of vulture that is endemic to Southern Africa. In Botswana this species of vulture breeds only in Otse at Mannyelanong Hill and at the Tswapong Hills. The Cape Vultures Environmental Association (CVEA) was established in 2003 (and registered as a Society with the Botswana registrar of Societies in 2012, see Annex 1), and since establishment the association has been monitoring the Cape Vulture colony in Mannyelanong. Over the years it has emerged that intentional and accidental poisoning is the number one threat to vultures in Botswana, most of which are globally threatened, based on the IUCN Red List (See Annex 2). For instance, large numbers are killed through deliberate or accidental poisonings, largely through baits that use agricultural pesticides which are freely available or can be bought over the counter (e.g. >200 vultures were killed at a single poisoning event in Kwando in May 2012 ; during post-mortem, greenish-bluish granules from the meat in the vultures’ crop contents were retrieved and the poison used proved to be carbofuran, a commonly used pesticide). Sometimes vultures are the unintentional victims of poisoning that was meant for other predators that are considered as vermin to livestock keepers e.g. lions and hyenas. These mortalities are impacting seriously on Cape vulture populations in Botswana. It is in this light that CVEA has come up with this vulture awareness project, after which they approached BirdLife Botswana so that the NGO can collaborate and provide technical back-stopping to the association. The main aims of the project are (1) to lobby for the regulation of, and usage of “safe” pesticides in the country, (2) to raise awareness on vulture conservation/ poisoning and (3) to create a vulture monitoring network whilst improving the livelihoods of the Otse Community as custodians of the Cape Vulture breeding site. These objectives will be met by the production of posters, mobilisation of community support groups, Kgotla meetings, attending relevant stakeholder meetings (e.g. farmers meetings, the agro-chemical committee meetings etc), trade fairs, educational and environmental symposia, and other gatherings through which anti-vulture poisoning information could be disseminated, as well the celebration of the International Vulture Awareness Day in Otse, and painting of vulture murals in and around Otse, so as to raise the profile of the vultures there (The project proponents will engage the youth in drawing murals depicting the plight of the cape vulture in schools, bars, shops and other public areas such as Kgotlas, in and around Otse). The project also aims to improve the conservation status of vultures in the country and to get the general public to appreciate avi-tourism as a means for rural livelihood improvement and economic diversification. This will be done to tap on the rarity and scarcity of vultures and use it as a tourist attraction. The project will target the farming community, the Otse Community, law enforcers, the general public and guides. The proponents intend that at the end of the project there should be revision (at least a commitment) to revise the national legislation regulating the importation, trade, ease of access and handling of agro-chemicals in the country. This project will be carried out in close liaison with BirdLife Botswana as they are the only ornithological society in the country, and thus far have been championing the cause for vulture conservation

Grant Amount (GEF Small Grants Programme) : US$ 50,000.00
Co-Finanshing in-Kind : US$ 24,825.00

GEF Small Grants Programme

Page publiée le 12 août 2017