Pangolin friendly

Pangolin friendly
farm fencing

One of the biggest threats facing pangolins in southern Africa is their accidental electrocution on electrified fences. Studies have found as many as 1,000 pangolins may be killed on these fences every year in South Africa alone.

This threat quite possibly overshadows the illegal wildlife trade as the biggest threat to pangolins in the region.

We work with researchers, conservationists, and wildlife rescue experts to develop, test. and implement ground-breaking new systems that can significantly reduce, if not entirely prevent, mortalities related to electrified fencing while still maintaining the integrity and primary function of the electrified fences.

Why we need pangolin friendly electric fences

Electrified fences are prevalent on game reserves, private game farms, nature reserves and commercial livestock farms across southern Africa. They are a popular option for the control of animal movement, ensuring livestock and wildlife stay in the confines of the farm and unwanted predators and people are kept out.

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While economical and effective, electrified fences also result in the electrocution of non-target species such as tortoises, reptiles, birds, and pangolins.

When a pangolin encounters an electrified fence, its head or unprotected underbelly usually receives the initial shock. This causes the pangolin to adopt its natural defensive position of rolling into a ball and inadvertently wrapping itself around the electric wire.

The consecutive shocks the animal receives cause it to curl even tighter around the wire until the successive electrical pulses – or exposure – ultimately result in its death.

With generous funding support from SavePangolins, we have teamed up with the Tikki Hywood Foundation and the Kalahari Wildlife Project to redesign the way electric fences work to protect these vulnerable creatures while maintaining the integrity of the fences.

The development and roll-out of the pilot stage of this project was made possible through funding and support from Save Pangolins, the Oppenheimer Generations Research and ConservationStafix Electric Fence and Security Centre and JVA Technologies, Maclin Power Fencing, Stafix in Kimberley and Polokwane, and Protoclea.

We aim to continue the development and modifications of pangolin friendly electric fences with support from new partners, researchers and donors seeking to save vulnerable wildlife from unnecessary death.

Watch: Eye of the Pangolin

This ground-breaking documentary follows two men on a mission to capture the four species of African pangolins on camera – follow them and fall in love with these extraordinary creatures.