The astonishing thing is that simply putting up road signs that warn of crossing caracals would make an enormous difference to their survival. The problem is the South African government controls road signs and the approval process is very slow. The City of Cape Town says it could take years to shepherd the necessary legislation for a national caracal road sign. Caracals don’t have years!
We have promised to raise $3,000 (£2,120) to have temporary signs created that will save caracal lives. The signs will be placed by volunteers in areas where caracals cross over roads; it’s a simple thing to do and, with your help, we can begin saving lives today.
These last caracals living in Cape Town’s mountainous peninsula are almost completely isolated from other wild areas. There is hope that in the future, we can develop wildlife corridors to safely connect these populations to other wild spaces, but without immediate help – there may be no caracals left to save by then.
Losing these beautiful creatures would make the world a poorer place. In the 13th and 14th centuries, caracals were used by rich people to hunt. They were exposed to a flock of pigeons so gamblers could bet on which caracal would kill the largest number of birds. This probably gave rise to the expression “to put the cat among the pigeons”.
It’s not often that a simple, effective and cheap solution presents itself. So please, if you possibly can, donate today and together we will ensure that in the 21st Century, instead of putting the cat among the pigeons, we will put the warning signs among the caracal, and make sure caracals and their kittens live on in the Cape Town mountains.