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IMPACT PROMISE

Our Partners are carefully selected due to their high conservation impact

Appeal Snapshot

Partner:

Cape Leopard Trust

Location:

South Africa

Category:
  • Education
  • Scientific Research
  • Wildlife Conservation
Urgent Appeals:

None currently

Date Founded:

2004

Partner Qualifications:

  • IUCN Member
    A distinguished Member of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. IUCN Members are each vetted and voted on based on an independent, rigorous assessment and external references. Learn More
  • Verified Partner
    One of Conservation Allies' staff or trusted advisors has visited this organization and verified its work and impact.
  • Legally Constituted
    This organization is formally constituted and is a legally recognized non-profit in its country of origin.
  • Top Accountability
    Our experienced team has rigorously reviewed the organization's annual accounts. Learn More
  • Effective Impact
    We recognize this Partner for their tremendous efforts to make a difference for wildlife and local communities, as well as welcome technical support from Conservation Allies to improve and scale up their impact.
  • Conservation Action Heroes
    We recognize this Partner for their high level of engagement with the Conservation Allies team and their demonstration of a clear commitment to our collective mission of making a real difference and having a major impact on wildlife and communities where it is needed most.

About Cape Leopard Trust

The Cape Leopard Trust (CLT) is an environmental NGO and non-profit, based in the Western Cape of South Africa. They facilitate and promote the conservation of biological diversity, with a focus on the leopard as a flagship species. Their purpose and vision is to ensure the continued survival of leopards for the benefit of nature and society, by supporting the protection of leopard habitat and prey species,
promoting peaceful coexistence between leopards and people, and fostering community custodianship of the Cape’s unique biodiversity.  CLT works to achieve this vision through rigorous scientific research, conservation-in-action
initiatives, environmental education and outreach, and positive communication, in collaboration with communities, private landowners, and partner organizations.

Their Challenges

The Western Cape, South Africa, is home to globally relevant fauna and flora, and the Cape Floral Region is a Global Biodiversity Hotspot. The leopard is a member of the Big 5 and the last large predator to still roam free in the Western Cape. The species faces multiple threats, including limited and fragmented habitat, reduction in prey numbers, and high levels of conflict with people. 

Leopards in the Western Cape occur at low densities and utilize home ranges up to ten times larger than leopards in other parts of South Africa. Protecting connectivity across the landscape is essential for the leopard’s long-term survival and to ensure they can continue to provide vital ecosystem services.

Poaching in the form of illegal snaring is an exceedingly complex challenge. Snares are indiscriminate and take a huge toll on the entire ecosystem, also impacting predators like leopards. The threat of snaring to leopards is two-fold: firstly, it reduces the numbers of their prey species like small antelope and porcupine, and secondly leopards themselves can get caught.

Human-predator conflict is another age-old and still ongoing challenge, as leopards continue to be persecuted in retaliation for both real and perceived livestock losses.

Engaging youth in protecting biodiversity is often overlooked, yet this is crucial as it fosters a lifelong commitment to environmental stewardship, instills a sense of responsibility, and ensures the continuity of conservation efforts for future generations. In rural settings, teachers often face unique obstacles such as isolation, resource constraints, and multi-grade teaching.

Their Approach

The CLT’s work and reputation is built on a well-established foundation of robust science and strong relationships. The CLT values an inclusive approach to research, conservation and education. They believe that strong stakeholder communication and incorporation is essential to devise successful conservation strategies. In addition, they try to ensure that all people can access nature-based learning and have created a suite of inclusive environmental education tools to facilitate this. 

Their research seeks to understand leopard ecology and people’s relationships with leopards, and they employ a variety of methods including camera trap surveys, dietary analyses, habitat suitability and connectivity modeling, citizen science, and social science. 

CLT takes a holistic approach to conservation and provides support for livestock farmers with leopard conflict, snare patrols, knowledge-sharing workshops, resources, collaborative initiatives, and community-based outreach. 

Finally, they aim to inspire the next generation with quality environmental education including wilderness camps, eco-clubs, day outings, holiday programs, art competitions, presentations, online learning, and a children’s literacy project.

Why They Need Your Help

Cape Leopard Trust seeks support to monitor leopard population trends through repeat large-scale camera surveys of core leopard habitat. The operational running costs of these surveys are immense. Furthermore, they need help to rapidly mitigate emerging threats to leopards. The increasing prevalence of snaring in the province has prompted the development of our collaborative Snare Free project, which requires urgent support to combat this threat. Additionally, funds are required to identify, investigate and conserve ecological corridors in partnership with private landowners and other stakeholders.

Conservation Allies charges no overhead fees or administration costs meaning 100% of your donation goes directly to Cape Leopard Trust.  All donations made from the United States are fully tax-deductible.