In two days time we will open our leopard and vervet monkey traps. Sam and I have been very busy training all our assistants, continuing pre-baiting, learning how the collars work, and gathering all the equipment together.
The leopard trap pre-baiting is going very well. We photographed a target male leopard at one trap site (picture below) and also saw photos on our stationary cameras of a leopard carrying pre-baited meat. They seem very happy moving into these area for a free meal so things are looking positive for when trapping begins.
In the next two months while we have vets on site we will also be attempting to collar a vervet monkey. This is so we can find the troop and habituate the animals to humans for data collection purposes. One of our assistants, David, has been pre-baiting the unset traps and taking preliminary data on the vervet monkeys since March. The vervets visit the areas and eat the fruit but the traps are also frequented by warthogs and red duikers so we will be rebaiting throughout the day once the traps open. David has been teaching all the Primate and Predator Project team how the traps work so that we are all able to help with theses traps over the next couple of months.