Climate Change and Livestock Management in the succulent Karoo | WWF South Africa

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Climate Change and Livestock Management in the succulent Karoo

Sheep farmers in the Suid Bokkeveld, around Nieuwoudtville in the Northern Cape, face an extreme climate that ranges from over 40 degrees C in summer to minus four degrees in winter. With support from the WWF Nedbank Green Trust a livestock-monitoring project was started in this area in 2013.

This is an innovative Participatory Action Research (PAR) project being undertaken by vulnerable small-scale rooibos and livestock farmers in the Suid Bokkeveld in conjunction with development practitioners and academic climate scientists.

The project will enhance our understanding of how marginal communities can adapt lifestyles and livelihoods in the face of expected climate change and climate extremes.

Additional to livestock monitoring, the project entails documenting the impact of extreme temperatures on human health and activities on farm. While the data collection is still ongoing and will continue until 2015, some preliminary findings are emerging.

To support farmers in taking wise decisions in management of livestock and biodiversity under climate extremes, the project manager envisages publishing the detailed findings and a compilation of possible adaptation options in a handbook in 2015.

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