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Chacma baboons (Papio ursinus) form a part of the Cape Peninsula’s rich biodiversity. The Cape Peninsula baboons are considered to be a major tourism asset and play a potentially significant ecological role in the Cape Floristic Region.

Under the current scientific management programme, the Cape Peninsula baboon population is growing steadily (4% per year).

The population is not endangered, nor is it under threat.

The welfare of baboons rises when the conflict between baboons and urban dwellers is scientifically managed. 

In the long-term, the management goal is to reduce conflict between humans and baboons. The City of Cape Town believe that the baboons of Table Mountain National Park should remain wild and free. 

Urban Baboon Programme

On 1 October, 2020, the City of Cape Town appointed service provider, NCC Environmental Services to manage the Urban Baboon Programme. The contract will run until 30 June 2023.

NCC will have over 70 staff members working on the project which include: 44 Rangers, 22 Supervisors, 4 Field Managers, 4 Area Managers and 2 Project Managers.

NCC is committed to approaching the Urban Baboon Programme with a multidisciplinary perspective. This includes supporting the authorities in addressing waste management, increasing community education initiatives and keeping up to date with advances in wildlife management technology.

Funded by the City of Cape Town, the aim is to keep baboons out of the city's suburban areas.

Update: Baboon population - September 2021

Update: Baboon population - September 2021

As of September 18, 2021, the total count for the baboon population overseen by service providers on the Cape Peninsula is 495.  This figure excludes the approximately 110 baboons that live in the protected area of the Cape Point section of Table Mountain National Park.  

The baboon population which borders on urban areas has shown a general increase since June 2016 from 404 baboons to 494 baboons presently. 

While growth in the two subpopulations was relatively constant between June 2019 and June 2020, there was an overall increase between June 2020 and September 2021. 

To download the 2021 annual population census, go to: 2021 Annual Baboon Count of Managed Troops

Baboon Population 2021 PS

Update: Baboon population - June 2020

Update: Baboon population - June 2020

In the June 2020 census, it was estimated that a total of 445 baboons were living in 10 managed troops on the Peninsula.

There are a further five troops which live in protected areas (National Parks) in the southern Cape Peninsula. The population of these troops is not included in this population data. n Management Annual Report, go to: 2020 Baboon Management Annual Report 

To download the June 2020 annual population census, go to: 2020 Annual Baboon Count of Managed Troops

To download the 2019 - 2020 Baboon Management Annual Report, go to: 2020 Baboon Management Annual Report 

Update: Baboon population - June 2019

Update: Baboon population - June 2019

In the June 2019 census, it was estimated that a total of 449 baboons were living in 11 managed troops on the Peninsula.

There are a further five troops which live in protected areas (National Parks) in the southern Cape Peninsula. The population of these troops is not included in this population data. 

To download the June 2019 annual population census, go to:  Baboon Management Annual Report 2019

 

 

Update: Baboon population - June 2018

Update: Baboon population - June 2018

In the June 2018 census, it was estimated that a total of 414 baboons were living in 11 managed troops on the Peninsula.

There are a further five troops which live in protected areas (National Parks) in the southern Cape Peninsula. The population of these troops is not included in this population data. 

Population data table 2013 2018 PS 127

**The Misty Cliffs individuals were included in the GOB Troop totals since January 2017, when they merged with the GOB Troop. Some individuals later returned and continue to move above and between Scarborough and Misty Cliffs. Sub-totals are shown to differentiate between the GOB Main Troop and the six individuals (three adults and 3 juveniles).

**The Constantia Troops totals are split between CT1 and CT2 from December 2017 to differentiate between the total baboons for each of these two troops from 2018. 

Update: Baboon population - June 2015

Update: Baboon population - January 2015

By mid-2014 it was estimated that a total of 550 baboons were living in 16 troops on the Peninsula.

Human Wildlife Solutions (HWS) is responsible for the 10 managed troops.

HWS used the December 2012 census population total as a baseline and accurately recorded birth, deaths and emigrations and immigrations to derive troop numbers among the managed baboon troops.

The latest ground count of the managed population by Esmé Beamish (Baboon Research Unit, University of Cape Town) is accurate up to the end of January 2015.

HWS will now use these counts as a baseline for future counts. They were incorporated into HWS data as of the HWS February 2015 Report.

According to these statistics 383 individuals baboons live in the 10 managed troops on the Peninsula.

population statistics stats 2

The population of the Cape Peninsula managed baboon troops continues to show positive growth.

This is supported by the ratio of juveniles: adult females in the population being greater than 1.

Another positive trend is that overall mortality is lower than the previous year.

The adult baboon sex ratio (number adult males: adult females) is within the normal range for Chacma baboons (Papio ursinus) indicating a healthy male population.

Reduction in 'human-induced mortalities'

Since the implementation of scientific wildlife management, conflict between humans and baboons on the Cape Peninsula has reduced substantially.

Human-induced mortalities (e.g. baboon deaths from pellet guns, car accidents, poisoning or baboon-dog altercations) have reduced from:

  •  63% of all deaths between 2006 and 2008 to
  •  52% of all deaths between 2009 and 2011 to
  •  25% of all deaths between 2012 and 2014

In the long-term, the management goal is to reduce conflict between humans and baboons.

To this end, 63 baboon rangers, funded by the City of Cape Town, work to keep baboons out of the suburban areas all year round.

Census date: 31 January 2015
Esme Beamish (M.Sc) - University of Cape Town Baboon Research Unit

  • Click here to view or download the Census Data Table. 
  • Click here to see census: Cape Peninsula Managed Baboon Troops @ January 2014
  • Click here to see census: Cape Peninsula Managed Baboon Troops @ January 2015

 

Update: Baboon population - June 2013

Update: Baboon population - 2013

In early January 2013, a population census concluded by Esmé Beamish of the Baboon Research Unit (BRU) of the University of Cape Town indicated that the total baboon population on the Cape Peninsula was 501.

The census covered all 16 troops in the Southern Peninsula, including the three splinter troops – Da Gama, Misty Cliffs and Zwaanswyk.

Total baboon population – year on year

population statistics stats 1

 

 

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