Save Cape Baboons

Scarface has been murdered by the Overstrand Municipality and HWS. Despite the offering of life in a sanctuary, they still killed him. A baboon that lived in a biosphere. 

Why should baboons be killed when humans are at fault?

Human Wildlife Solutions  (HWS) filed an incident report on Scarface but, after a Baboon Task Team meeting on 13 July 2021, he was given a reprieve from possible execution. He still had a “Rap Sheet” and was therefore not yet in the clear. To understand why Scarface was labelled a problem, one must look at the root causes. After the devastating fires in Betty’s Bay in 2019 (caused by an illegal flare fired at the mountain by a local resident), the baboons entered the lower coastal plains more frequently in search of food. This resulted in the troop finding human-derived food in the form of unsecured waste. The fynbos is recovering slowly but the troop continues to be attracted to areas where bins and bags are left unsecured.

Scarface was not a gangster, he had a scar on his face from an altercation with another baboon. Scarface was one of a troop of twenty-one within the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve of Betty’s Bay. He played a pivotal role in protecting the troop and could occasionally be seen at his post as sentinel, keeping a larger neighbouring troop from entering Betty’s Bay from behind the mountain. Although not usually the alpha male, Scarface did occasionally rotate with the two other alpha males. Each male plays a vital role in the dynamics of the troop, and to interfere with the make-up of the troop by the removal of one or more, will have lasting consequences on the sustainability of this small and cohesive troop.

Since the appointment of HWS, with its cruel and extreme methods, the deterioration in the condition of the troop is evident, house entries have increased and the local residents have been left further polarised and divided and Scarface is now dead. This very same situation is faced by residents and their baboon neighbours in the Cape Peninsula (read more via the links at the bottom of this post).

Voice your opinion about the killing of baboons for the purposes of management.

Euthanizing and paintballing baboons is currently being authorized and permitted by the authorities within the Western Cape – which include the Provincial Department of Environmental Affairs and Development Planning (DEA&DP), Cape Nature (CN) and Overstrand Municipality (OSM) and the City of Cape Town (CoCT). The OSM promised a Pilot Project which did not materialise.

We understand the need to keep baboons out of homes. There is a strong correlation between access to human derived food and the presence of baboons in urban areas. Homes are then targeted. Residential waste, drop-off points for rubbish, and public bins that are not baboon or animal proofed exacerbate the problem. Birdseed, bird feeders, pet food and fruit trees are also attractants that lead directly to human/baboon conflict.

Human Wildlife Solutions (HWS) were contracted by the OSM to monitor baboons in Betty’s Bay which lies firmly within the bounds of the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve. This was done without prior public participation and BEFORE the aforementioned issues had been addressed by the OSM.

HWS uses techniques that deliberately instil fear in the baboons by means of “virtual fence” technology with the related predatorial sounds. Paintball guns designed to hurt are the weapons of choice. Non judicial shooting of paintballs by Monitors result in pain and injuries. “Rap Sheets” of so called “Habitual Raiders” mark the baboon for a lethal “solution”.

Anton Bredell who heads the DEA&DP instructed Mayor Dan Plato to facilitate a workshop in order to address Baboon Management Reform. This was scheduled for January 2021. We are still waiting.

Images of baboons that have been tagged, collared and paintballed.

Please fill in the form below and submit your entry to oppose HWS and any other baboon management company from sentencing any baboon to death.

Municipalities should be working closely with residents in a search for ethical and holistic resolutions to resolve human/baboon conflict.

Your details will be stored and only shared with the Overstrand and Cape Town Municipalities, Cape Nature, and the Western Cape Government for the purpose of this petition.

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Results so far...

Do you oppose the killing of any baboon for the purpose of baboon management?
(969 votes)
(32 votes)
Total Votes: 1,001

Do you oppose the use of paintball guns on baboons?
(942 votes)
(59 votes)
Total Votes: 1,001

Your feedback so far...

“People should be educated about living in an area where wildlife is encouraged to live undisturbed. We should be taught and supported in protecting property and food sources from access. The more baboons move through houses without viewing it as a source of food, the less chance of them trying to gain access.”


“I am very resentful that my taxpayers and ratepayers money in Overstrand is being spent on baboon monitors instead of anti poaching which costs the economy and our environment far more. The minor cost of baboon house damage could easily be reduced or prevented if people were more careful. Baboons enhance the fynbos and we are privileged to live so close to nature.”


“We are visited by baboons here but they have never entered or tried to enter the house and only take fruit from our trees!”


This Petition is supported by concerned residents of Betty’s Bay, Pringle Bay ReWilding Group, ReWild Rooi Els and Betty’s Bay Baboon Action Group, together with those of the City of Cape Town including Baboon Solutions. These groups are supportive of this important petition to put the power of change in the hands of the community. . .“Our Chacma Baboons are facing an onslaught like never before on their lives and livelihoods.”

More information about how we are fighting the paintballing, tagging and “euthanising” of our baboons in the Western Cape can be found via the links below (you can also join the organisations supporting this cause via their Facebook links, to get involved locally):

Images supplied by participating groups – thank you for your contribution!