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The Table Mountain dassie population is declining – listener

13 April 2021 2:51 PM
Tags:
SANParks
Table Mountain
Table Mountain National Park
Pippa Hudson
TMNP
ecology
ecologist
Lunch with Pippa Hudson
dassies
dassie
Rock hyrax
Marna Herbst

Are there fewer dassies than before? Pippa Hudson interviews SANParks Regional Ecologist Marna Herbst.

Is the Table Mountain dassie population dwindling?

A listener and regular hiker in the Table Mountain National Park called to say she’s noticing far fewer dassies than before.

A tourist on Table Mountain taking photographs of dassies. © Mauro Pereira/123rf

Pippa Hudson asked SANParks Regional Ecologist Marna Herbst if we should be worried.

Herbst says that dassie populations fluctuate naturally and that there’s no indication of a population decline.

We have 88 camera traps across the whole mountain…

Marna Herbst, Regional Ecologist - SANParks

We think there are quite a bit more, but that’s just an anecdote…

Marna Herbst, Regional Ecologist - SANParks

You get dassies in Israel; their urban population has increased… there they’re doing well.

Marna Herbst, Regional Ecologist - SANParks

Dassies might bite you when you try to feed them… They eat plants…

Marna Herbst, Regional Ecologist - SANParks

As long as they have shelter and food… they don’t need water, they get it from food… I don’t think we should be worried about dassie numbers.

Marna Herbst, Regional Ecologist - SANParks

For more detail, listen to the interview in the audio below




13 April 2021 2:51 PM
Tags:
SANParks
Table Mountain
Table Mountain National Park
Pippa Hudson
TMNP
ecology
ecologist
Lunch with Pippa Hudson
dassies
dassie
Rock hyrax
Marna Herbst

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