Burghers Walk in Simon’s Town will be temporarily closed overnight in order to facilitate the capture of a caracal that is threatening the endangered African penguins in the area. Read more below:
The City of Cape Town will again be closing Burghers Walk in Simon’s Town to the public in an attempt to capture a caracal which is preying on the highly endangered African penguin in the area. The City was unsuccessful in its attempts to trap the caracal in December and the next operation will start tomorrow, 12 January 2017.
‘The City’s Environmental Management Department has brought in an expert trapper to try a different method of trapping that utilises padded foot loops. This method has been very effective in catching leopards for research purposes. The City’s wildlife veterinarian will be on standby to sedate the animal in the event of a capture.
‘The area will be closed on a daily basis from 18:00 to 06:00. Signs to this effect will be placed at the entrance to Burghers Walk (bottom of Bellevue Road) as the boardwalk area is the only section affected. Extensive efforts are being made to capture the caracal and the City appeals to members of the public for their patience and cooperation during this time,’ said the spokesperson for the City, Priya Reddy.
The City halted capture operations after 23 December 2016 due to the high number of visitors to the area. As a mitigation measure, a night-time patroller was employed in the evenings from 20:00 to 06:00 to act as a deterrent. This approach has been successful and we have only recorded three predations (all on one night) since 24 December 2016.
It is important to note that all trapping is being done under a permit from CapeNature. Once captured, the caracal will be relocated.