About

SAWPS aim to improve animal welfare, prevent animal cruelty and abuse, protect wildlife and conserve biodiversity in South Africa

The South African Wildlife Protection Society is based in Wilderness South Africa, where the founders, Vernon and Tony Gibbs-Halls established The Garden Route Wildlife Sanctuary and Bird of Prey Centre. As with many sanctuaries, Vernon and Tony treated abused, ill, sick and orphaned wildlife at their own expense but for a caring attitude to nurse and reintroduce the wildlife under their care back to freedom. Although they have moved, Vernon and Tony continue to proactively campaign for animal rights and are in constant need for donors, sponsors and volunteers.

Wildlife rehabilitation involves caring for injured, ill and orphaned wild animals with the goal of releasing each into its natural habitat It is the managed process whereby a displaced, sick, injured or orphaned wild animal regains the health and skills it requires to function normally and live self-sufficiently. The definition may seem simple, but there is a staggering amount of work behind those words. The successful return of a wild animal to its natural habitat is the result of a community effort, with each individual contributing to achieve a common goal.

Critics of wildlife rehabilitation advocate "Let nature take its course," indicating that distressed wild animals should be allowed to remain free to meet their natural fate. However, records indicate that the majority of injured, ill and orphaned wild animals handled by rehabilitators are suffering not because of "natural" occurences, but because of human intervention -- some accidental, some intentional, many preventable: autos, trains, mowers, high line wires, firearms, traps, kids throwing stones, woodcutters, picture windows, poisons, oil spills, pets, etc. Rehabilitators ease the suffering of these animals by either caring for them until they can be released or humanely euthanizing them. At all hours you'll find them, feeding orphans, cleaning cages, giving medications, changing bandages... in fact, performing nearly every chore related to caring for captive wildlife. As well as wildlife care, rehabilitators provide public education programs that encourage empathy, respect and protection for wildlife and their habitats The telephone is our first line of defense. Wildlife information providers advise and educate concerned, curious and sometimes frustrated members of the public. Calls to and from Western Cape Nature Conservation decides next course of action and permits are then issued for transport of animals and a 3 month rehabilitation period, pending nature of injury or longer for orphaned animals. On arrival, a registration form detailing species, nature of injury, prognosis, area location, names of persons collected from and a short history is completed. Some species are referred to specialist centres whilst others require a high level of expertise like a veterinarian. Before the injury is treated, whether bird or mammal, the animal is initially treated for DEHYDRATION AND SHOCK, the biggest initial killers.

1. Campaign to end all wildlife cruelty in South Africa

2. Educate environmentally sound best practise

3. To ensure the conservation, preservation and protection of both our terrestrial and marine biodiversity

4. To act as a strong public watch over government legislation and environmental compliance

5. To campaign to regulate the hunting industry, ban the use of gin traps and poisoning and outlaw the canned lion hunting industry