A new and transformative Black Rhino Custodianship project partnership has been signed and will see state land, private land and community-owned land consolidated into a single block on which a new population of black rhino will be established.
The Buffalo Kloof Custodianship Project, located adjacent to the Waters Meeting Nature Reserve, near Bathurst in the Eastern Cape, espouses government’s plans regarding biodiversity management in the province, that of ensuring that the industry brings material benefits to surrounding communities.
The project involves a composite of private, community and state land.
- The private land is held by four landowners and has been converted from traditional farming to conservation, wildlife ranching and hunting. It has also recently been declared as a Protected Environment.
- The community land has been bought by the state and is in the process of being transferred to the Yendella community. The land consists primarily of dense bush on steeper slopes, and is not particularly suitable for farming. This community consists of about 25 families and they have registered as the Sikhululekile Co Op.
- The state land is managed by the Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency (ECPTA), and agency of DEDEAT.
This initiative is part of government’s ongoing programme to protect, enhance and transform the industry with a couple of other successful projects having been activated including the Great Fish where community land claimants are now owners of a portion of land in the Double Drift Game Reserve and Wild Coast’s pristine Mkhambathi Reserve where community members came with their own equity share as landowners because there was a successful land claim.