This project focuses on how large predators affect the foraging and habitat use of herbivores in arid environments. Predators directly affect their prey in both lethal and non-lethal ways. Non-lethal effects such as fear and apprehension generated from the possibility of being attacked may be enough to change prey behaviour. Ultimately, risk-sensitive behaviour may affect food and habitat use, change ecological processes, and potentially affect biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. Thus, an understanding of the effects of fear (or the absence thereof) can play a key role in the management and conservation practices in reserves and parks. The project is undertaken by Dr. Mohammad Abu Baker and Dr. Adrian M. Shrader of the School of Life Sciences at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg.
For further information, participation and/ or donations please contact Tswalu Management