Encountering baboons if you live in an area where baboons occur
If you have chosen to live in one of the villages in areas where baboons occur then it is up to you to follow the simple rules that will make your life easier and go a long way to make the entire village a low reward area for your baboon neighbour.
Make sure that your waste management is extremely efficient.
If possible keep your garbage bin out of sight, for example, inside a garage.
It is essential to baboon-proof your dustbin, wherever it is situated.
There are a variety of methods available to baboon proof your bin, depending on the type of bin you are using.
If you are using the wheelie bin supplied by the municipalities – remember to attach locks to both sides of the bin – a single lock in the middle of the bin is insufficient. See illustration 1
If the municipality has supplied you with a baboon proof bin – remember to attach a padlock or bin lock – see illustration 2.
Secure your bin upright so that baboons cannot knock the bins over – this can be done by tying the bin to a pole or to a wall. Baboons will run past the bins and attempt to knock them over to gain easy access to the food contained within. As the baboons knock the bins down, the bin lid will pop open if not secured with padlocks (see above). If the bin remains upright it is more difficult for the baboons to access the food within.
It has been suggested that the bins are most effective stored flat on the ground. This is illogical and untrue. It is not only difficult for residents to place their garbage in the bin when it is flat on the ground, but it is considerably easier for the baboons to sit next to the low bin and reach into the bin for food.
Reduce your waste by planning carefully and recycling. If your throw a lot of food content into your waste the baboons will soon come to view your bin as a rich reward site. With the huge pressures of waste management both locally and globally it is good to reduce your waste in any event.
A few commonly asked questions
1. Will rubber snakes chase baboons away if I place them on my dustbin?
No! Baboons are far too clever to think that rubber snakes provide any real threat.
2. If I place my garbage into black bags the baboons won’t be able to see or smell the food and will leave the rubbish alone.
Not so - the baboons have come to associate black bags with easy food, and easily rip the bags apart and in searching for food will spread the garbage all over the road.
3. Will ‘bungees’ be sufficient to hold the wheelie bin lid down?
If you are the only resident attempting to baboon-proof your bins, then bungees may have limited success. However, if your neighbours have employed efficient baboon proofing, then the baboons will spend more time where baboon proofing is less efficient and they will work out how to remove the bungee cords and open the bins fairly quickly.