Agricultural Research Council, PO Box 101, Grahamstown 6140 South Africa, Agricultural Research Council, PO Box 7063, Nelspruit South Africa, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, PO Box 77000, Port Elizabeth 6000 South Africa
- Key words: rangeland, parkland, arid and semiarid zone, wildlife, Southern Africa
- Page(s) : 362-70
- Published in: 2006
Using data from state-funded and private conservation areas throughout South Africa, we explored the production of secondary herbivore biomass as a function of rainfall. We examined trends within the wildlife industry, including changes in the area of land under both state and private management, wildlife numbers, auction prices and hunting statistics. As a result of the availability of wild herbivores from formal conservation areas, there has been a dramatic increase in the biomass of wildlife on private conservation land. Rain use efficiencies for both formal and private conservation areas are at or below 2, suggesting that there is potential for increasing wild herbivore biomass throughout the country. The area of land under informal conservation management has increased to almost 14% of the surface area of South Africa, with the formal conservation agencies contributing a further 6.3%. We recommend that further stimulation of the wildlife industry should occur.