This month, we have reached an incredible milestone with our LGD placement programme — after nine years of placements, this month we placed our 200th LGD! We are thrilled that our latest research, monitoring puppies that we have placed, showed that these little Tswana LGDs have reduced conflict by at least 85% for every farmer that received them. Livestock predation by carnivores has declined dramatically and attitudes towards cheetahs and other carnivores have improved dramatically. And the word has spread beyond our placement programme. Farmers are now sourcing and training their own LGDs, and we are training up our model farmers to become LGD training hubs for the communities at large, helping more and more farmers to protect their livestock from predation and protect themselves against human-wildlife conflict.
CCB’s Jane Horgan reflects back on what this journey means.
“I was hired by CCB in 2010 with the purpose of building the demonstration farm at CCB’s Western Kalahari field camp in Ghanzi. The 12 goats and LGD “Tau” arrived on my birthday in November 2010 into a freshly minted, brand-new kraal with an untouched farm full of long grass and browse that the goats could enjoy all to themselves. When I started my Masters thesis in 2011, we wanted to find the data that would prove that Tswana dogs were capable and impressive livestock guardians, despite their smaller size. The fact that the data from my research was able to inspire the unique approach of CCB’s LGD placement programme is an incredible source of pride to me. And the team’s unwavering drive to rescue puppies, train them so efficiently and place them with farmers in need brings not only me, but the entire team and incredible amount of joy. It is so satisfying to hear from these farmers that they no longer experience conflict, that they no longer have to worry continually about the safety of their livestock and that, thanks to our LGD programme, their farms have been able to grow and help provide for themselves and their families. And the fact that we’ve been able to provide this peace of mind to over 200 farmers is an incredible achievement and is a tribute to the dedication and commitment of CCB’s team.”