Operation Save Escaped Elephant From Being Killed

Mount Camdeboo orchestrates specialist translocation operation to save escaped elephant from being killed

An African elephant bull that escaped an Eastern Cape game reserve for a second time in recent weeks was on Thursday set to be shot. However, due to an expeditious, conservation response from Mount Camdeboo Game Reserve in joint partnership with the owners of the elephant, the Eastern Cape’s Department of Economic Development and a conservation task team of elephant and translocation experts, the bull is set to receive a reprieve from this death sentence.

Although this large bull of approximately 20 to 25 years of age has over the last few days, wandered across neighbouring farms and roads it appears to be an extremely calm and relaxed animal and thus far has not been a threat to anyone.

It is for this reason that the task team comprising of Dereck Milburn of the Aspinall Foundation, an expert dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of wildlife; Dr William Fowlds, a well-respected wildlife veterinarian; Brett Mitchell, an elephant expert of the Elephant Reintegration Trust; Peter Chadwick, a protected area and conservation specialist; and Mount Camdeboo (whose ethos is #conservationinaction), have put forward a far more pragmatic solution that will hopefully save the animal.

The Eastern Cape’s Department of Economic Development, Environmental Affairs were able to issue the relocation permit within a short time; whereafter it was concluded by the parties that it would be in the best interest of the bull to be translocated to Mount Camdeboo – who fully understand the risk of receiving this elephant. In only 30 hours, the task team faciliated the translocation of the elephant.

After initial immobilisation, via aerial darting, the elephant will be translocated for release at Mount Camdeboo by Conservation Solutions, whose expertise in safe, wildlife capture is well-renowned. Specialised equipment that will be needed to move this large animal has been specially transported from KwaZulu-Natal.

On arrival at its new home, Dr William Fowlds, his veterinary team, Conservation Solutions as well as a helicopter will be on standby for a period of up to 24 hours to monitor the elephant’s condition during and after the translocation. A satellite-tracking collar will also be fitted to allow for the constant monitoring of the bull as it settles into its new environment.

The bull will join a small breeding herd of elephants that were released on to the property in August this year. Despite this rescue plan, it is however recognised by all that this is an extremely complex operation with multiple risks still posing a threat to the elephant’s survival.

Dereck Milburn, the main coordinator of this monumental effort said, “the dedication from all parties has been absolutely incredible, and, without the initial call for assistance from Michele Pickover with the full support of John and Sandra Skinner, little would have been possible. Iain Buchanan and Mount Camdeboo Game Reserve have been indispensable throughout this operation, as have Patrick Grewar and the Elephants, Rhinos & People (ERP) team. The teams have gone beyond the call of duty to secure the life of this elephant. I am extremely confident that they will continue to do so to ensure the elephant settles in well. Wildlife 911, represented by Chris Holcroft, have also truly demonstrated their commitment to wildlife rescue by generously funding this translocation operation.”.

These synergistic efforts, unparalleled teamwork and unrelenting commitment to ensure the safety of the elephant have undoubtedly demonstrated that this teamwork approach can solve conservation challenges, such as saving the life of an elephant. It should be regarded as a benchmark as to how future complex conservation operations could be handled.

Press Release – 12th October 2019


Matric Looms – Is it University or a Gap Year?

BackpackingThousands of students will soon start writing their matric, their final school exam before venturing into the world beyond. Some will go on to university having long planned their road ahead. Many more will go to university with no real plan other than knowing they need a degree of some sort if they are to stand any hope of getting a job and yet others will go to on to follow more technically oriented careers, some entering an apprenticeships.

But there will be many who have no idea of their path forward and will join the labour market in whatever position they are fortunate enough to secure. Without further education or training they stand little hope in advancing in life unless they are exceptional and committed for there always will be a few unusual souls who will rise from poverty and no education to go on and accomplish great things.

Then there are those who choose not to pursue an immediate education or employment straight out of school but to rather take a year or two off to decide on their future and get over the harrowing experience a whole 12 years of school. Some will laze about the house enjoying free board and lodging and a suitable allowance to allow them to enjoy life. Others will take ‘temp’ type jobs as waitrons or other and survive as they decide on the path forward but others, those with a little, or a lot, of financial backing of family be able to take GAP year. 

Depending on the funds available today’s world is their oyster with many options, many not without significant I initial funding by way of airfares and seed money to get them off on a safe and secure start in the US in particular. Some may choose the way some of their parents chose and take a more adventurous backpacking route living hand to mouth with odd jobs here and there as they tour the world.

But there are local options and if your youngster or grandchild is still unsure of what to do a visit to a local company’s website (Cape Town) may give them some ideas whilst they put their education on hold until they are more certain of the route they want to follow.

The company, GAP YEAR SOUTH AFRICA offers various options working in volunteer programs helping and teaching in disadvantaged communities. (Read More)

And then there is one that is almost tailor-made for local youngsters who have been brought up in the surf of Huletts, Bruces or Seal Point by giving a little back teaching swimming and surfing in the Ubuntu Learn2Swim&Surf Program.

More on this subject to follow when an experienced luxury yacht skipper shares his thoughts on a career abroad in the luxury and super yacht industry..

If you have a youngsters / grandchild who is presently on a gap year or has had a successful experience in their year off, share it in the comments below.

Not all men are created equal

A man is assaulted with machete in front of kids going to school in Sea Vista, a man dragged from his truck and beaten to death for being a foreigner as mobs burn and loot shops, even a car dealership in Johannesburg. Similar scenes played out in Pretoria last week and again yesterday. Cape Town student abducted, raped and beaten to death with a scale in a post office. A six-year old kidnapped from outside her school with a R2 million ransom on her head???

Two weeks ago we mourned the senseless murder of a gentleman who did nothing but good for our community and a shocking and unnecessary assault on his elderly defenseless wife. The mayhem cause by these savages goes on unrelenting with seemingly no way of stopping it.

Last year an elderly St Francis man was badly beaten by robbers in St Francis Bay. Recently his attacker walked free because his attorney was able turn the tables on the victim and set his client free. South African law dictates that everyone if considered not guilty until proved otherwise but surely that applies to people, to human beings not savages. These savages that murder and rape whether their victims are the aged, women or children, they show no mercy, no feelings or humanity so humanity should show them no mercy. No defense and life behind bars, better still life at the end of a rope.

It’s not because they are poor, or that they never had opportunity or lack of education and it’s not because of apartheid. It is because they are savages with no conscience or empathy, even for their own families who they will assault and rob and kill  as easily as they will a stranger.

 Incarceration does nothing to get them change their ways and it simply a waste of taxpayers’ money for you cannot rehabilitate a savage. Sadly our justice system seems intent passing lenient sentence that sees these savages back on the streets in next to no time to continue to terrorise and wreak havoc on their the communities. Why do we not pass sentences as they do in the United States, three strikes and you are out? Life in prison without possibility of parole!

Some people call these savages animals. Please don’t do that! Animals kill to protect or to eat, they don’t kill for fun or rape their own. Don’t besmirch our wildlife by comparing them to this scum of the earth.  

In an interview on Charl Leslie’s Sitdown Show on AlgoaFM last Sunday he asked his guest, South Africa’s first black woman to take command of an air force base (Port Elizabeth) and the first black woman air force helicopter pilot, his weekly question “if you were president for a day”? Her answer was “bring back the death penalty”! Plain and simple and without hesitation.

Now as those all human rightist choke on their post toasties saying it won’t stop the murder and rape. Well yes it will! Those perpetrators sentenced to death and hung by their necks will never murder, rape or molest a woman or child again. That is an absolute guarantee and the world will be better off with one less savage.  


Kouga Municipality - logo


Suitably Qualified Professional Service providers are hereby invited to submit
tenders for the Route Determination, Design and Implementation of Duine Road
Extension in Jeffreys Bay.


An electronic copy of the tender scope of works will be available on E-Tender portal www.etender.gov.za or the municipal website www.kouga.gov.za.

Printed copies of the Tender Document will be available at a non- refundable fee of R300 per document as from Friday, 14 June 2019 from the Registry Section, 33 Da Gama Road, Jeffreys Bay,6330 Tel No: 042 2002200.

Please note:
• Telegraphic, telephonic, telex, facsimile, email or late tenders will not be accepted.
• This contract will be evaluated on the 80/20 point scoring system.
• The Guidelines for locally produced goods or locally manufactured goods with a stipulated minimum threshold where applicable will be applied.
• A valid SARS Tax Clearance Certificate and the Tax compliance Status pin to be submitted.
• Prospective Service Providers must register on Kouga Municipality’s Supplier database as per the registration requirements.
• The National Treasury Central Supplier Database Summary report must be submitted.
• In order to claim Preference points a valid originally or certified B-BBEE Status level Verification certificate or a Sworn Affidavit completed on the DTI
format must be submitted to validate the claim.
• The Council reserves the right to accept any tender and, or part thereof, appoint more than one contractor, and does not bind itself to accept the lowest or any tender. The Council reserves the right to appoint any contractor.
• The validity period for submission must be 120 days from the closing date.
• Eligibility as detailed in the Conditions of Tender will apply (see F2.1 in Section T1.2: Tender Data) will be applicable. A tender offer not satisfying the stated eligibility criteria will be eliminated
• Functionality as detailed in the Conditions of Tender will apply (see F3.8.2 in Section T1.2: Tender Data). Tenderers are required to demonstrate their ability to undertake the work and provide proof of experience and expertise. Tenders failing to score a minimum of 70% for Functionality will be eliminated.
• Tenders that are deposited in the incorrect box or delivered to any other venue will not be considered.

Any inquiries relating to this tender must be submitted in writing via e-mail to tenders@kouga.gov.za and copied to jdutoit@kouga.gov.za

Completed documents in a sealed envelope endorsed “NOTICE NO: 113/2019:

“APPOINTMENT OF PROFESSIONAL SERVICE PROVIDER FOR DUINE ROAD EXTENTION”, must be placed in the Tender Box in the foyer of the Municipal Offices at 33 Da Gama Road, Jeffreys Bay on or before MONDAY, 15 JULY 2019 at 12:00.

C. Du Plessis
Municipal Manager

Tongue in Cheek at SONA 2019

Well we can expect the warm weather berg wind to continue for a bit longer considering all the hot air that was spoken in parliament last night. Talk of a new city was most interesting for Cyril must have paid an unseen visit to St Francis recently for we have the start of the ‘new city’ right here on our doorstep.

 I refer of course  to the growing ‘city of China Town’ for the way it is expanding adjacent Santareme towards the tip and alongside the R330. Cyril  spoke of revitalising the building industry but somehow I don’t see our many construction companies benefitting unless thaye start new tin and boxwood divisions. The estate too cannot expect too many sales from this sector unless of course they are an ANC cadre who has a concession to sell the plots. Sadly is won’t benefit the municipality for the development of this ‘new city’ will not attract anycash flow by way of rates and taxes but rather reduce the profitability of an already stretched electricity uupply with thousands more illegal connections. And the SRA cannot expect a spinoff for this ‘new city’ fall outside the demarcated area.

Oh well Cyril did say they are going to clamp down on all those involved in state capton and corruption. Of course he omitted to say this excluded the higher echelons of his party  for they have become the ‘Untouchables’. Little doubt that the head untouchable will be Cyril’s predecessor followed by the ACE in the ANC’s stacked deck.

Ah well maybe there is a little hope that the Untouchable will indeed fall for I seem to remember a movie made called the Untouchables starring Sean Connery and Kevin Costner some years ago where the baddies finally fall in a bloodbath. An aspiring movie maker could get some colourful scenes for a local remake with cadres dragged off kicking and screaming their innocence dressed in in orange suits if Cyril really means there will be ‘No Fear – No Favour’!

Talking of suits. I see Cyril led the fashion with his beautifully tailored suit, tie and shirt all made in Suth Africa, in fact right there in Salt River. It seems he wasn’t prepared to divulge where his undies were made lest he would have to admit they were of Chines iport variet. No self respecting gentleman is going to admit something that personal.

SONA must challenge both the Durban July and JB Met when it comes to fashion. Did’t see a lot of what was on offer but is seemed a lot tamer than in previous years. A few outrageous hats, surely they can’t be comfortable for the earer nor for the poor spectator who has to sit behind the hat. That said, the way so many politicians sleep in parliament maybe the lucky ones get shilded by theses expansive hats and can catch 40 winks ignoring Cyril’s threats to lock them up if they do bad things with the state’s money.

Good to see the R230 billion to refill the coffers at Eskom should see us keep our lights on, well certainly through the winter but seems after October they are not too sure. But if you flying anywhere maybe it is a good idea not to fly SAA or SAX. Not much being said about neither SAA nor the SABC bailouts.

Cyril’s promise to make Daya cheaper won’t have pleased Multichoice for cheaper data will see even more viewers dump DSTV for much cheaper and a far better choice offered by Netflix. Wonder if Vodacom will come to the party and reduce data costs on their 24 month contracts. Somehow I doubt it.

Oh well another SONA done and dusted until next year unless Musi has his way with the Public Protector report on Cyril. Please let us pray that they don’t make Cyril step aside for that would let the ace in the hole who, with his buddies are already lining up at the ATM chomping at the bit to turn SA into another Venezuela or Zimbabwe.

Remembering D-Day

One of the advantages of being retired, well sort of retired, on cold, wet and windy days one has options available. Stay in bed with a good book until it warms up, shuffle through to your favourite chair and sit and watch TV covered with a blanket until it warms up or, be brave and face the shower  with fortitude.

Being 6th June , the 75th anniversary of D-Day I had already chosen the second option no matter the weather for both Sky-News and CNN had given notice that they would be giving extensive coverage to events at Omaha Beach in Normandy being attended by Presidents Trump and Macron as well other commemorations at other events both sides of the channel attended by Royalty,

And what a rewarding decision it was for both channels gave so much insight into the events of that day 75 years ago that changed not only the course of the war but the freedoms we enjoy today.

Many older South African men have had to face battle at young age as did the brave men who landed on Normandy beaches that day. To all of these souls we must honour their bravery too for running into battle knowing that the next bullet could end your life is indeed the ultimate sacrifice for one’s country.

The events were attended by many of the courageous men who on that day stormed the beaches only to see comrades at arms mowed down by Nazi gunfire. Now in their nineties, most of these true veterans were still in their teens at the time and to see them honoured was a moving, poignant experience even if it was only a television rendition of the events and certainly brought a tear to the eye on more than one occasion.

Surprisingly the highlight of the day was the speech by President Trump. For once it wasn’t all about him, how great, how wonderful and important he is. Yesterday he spoke of the bravery of a generation that sacrificed so much. Citing individual acts of bravery of some of the men were actually present, shaking their hands and embracing them truly added to not just the emotion of the event but more than illustrated the bravery of those present and those lost forever.

Thank you SkyNews and CNN for not only commemorating the event but also for reminding us what so many of our parent of those us in our late 60’s, 70’s and 80’s suffered from 1939 to 1945.