New Wildlife Technician Joins Perdix

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We are delighted to welcome Wildlife Technician James Robins to our team, to help expand our provision of knowledgeable service and support for our clients. James has recently returned to the UK after gaining a 1st Class Honours Degree in Conservation Ecology at Stellenbosch University, South Africa. Whilst his degree covered a range of wildlife management and conservation topics, human-wildlife conflict management formed a core part of his studies. In addition to his theoretical knowledge, James also has extensive fieldwork skills after working as a wildlife technician and research assistant on various MSc and PhD wildlife projects in South Africa and the United States.

Managing Director, Dr. Dave Butler, commented ‘We are really pleased to welcome James to Perdix. His knowledge of international wildlife issues, particularly human-wildlife conflict management in Africa, will help us further increase the services and products we supply our clients in this field’.

Since being with Perdix, James has worked on various projects developing new and improved techniques and products for wildlife management, conservation and welfare. Some of these will be launched later this year. In the meantime, if you have a particular wildlife problem that requires an effective solution, please get in touch and have a chat with James or one of our other wildlife experts.

Using VHF Tracking Transmitters During The Roan Antelope Calving Season

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Dave Houghton from New Wycombe Game Farm in South Africa reports on the trials and tribulations of this year’s Roan antelope calving season…

” Looking for a needle in a haystack is something we do on a daily basis during the Roan Antelope calving season. This coincides with the rainy season which in turn brings the long grass and the reason for finding the “needles” in the first place, the Ticks. The Brown Ear Tick is responsible for transmitting Theileria, a deadly parasite which is normally fatal in Antelope and cattle alike, which means we have to find and dip the calves at a day old to help them through the first few weeks of life.A Roan antelope calf

The Roan originate from areas that have a lower tick load than the Limpopo region in South Africa which is where our farm is situated and as a result seem to be more susceptible to tick borne diseases. Before we started monitoring the calves the herds were left to their own devises and by the end of the season only 30% of the calves born were still alive.

Once born the Mother stashes her calf in the grass for up to five weeks before introducing it to the herd so we have to intervene just after birth to increase the likelihood of survival. We know the birth is about to happen due to a change in the Mothers behaviour, she is observed and the position of the birth is marked. The calf is given 24 hours to bond with the Mother and then caught and given an ear tag for identification and the all-important anti parasite dip. At one day old it is too young to dart and if left any longer will be impossible to catch by hand.

Now comes the hard work. The calf must be seen twice daily to pick up any early signs of Theileria (if caught early enough it can be cured). As you can imagine finding a calf that has been hidden in the grass by its Mother is not an easy task, finding it twice in one day is almost impossible and finding 29 of them (this year’s calf yield if all goes well) twice in one day is not realistic.Roan antelope calf being treated

So on a recent trip to the UK to visit family and friends and armed with a couple of circuit diagrams of radio collars I caught up with an old friend who used to be an electrical engineer. After giving him my specs, a radio transmitter small enough to go in a new born calves ear, at least 500 metres range, be able to switch on and off and please could I have it in two weeks, he set about some research.

Radio Transmitters For Game Birds…And Antelopes!

His initial feedback was not good news, too expensive, not easy to put together at the size I was asking for and of course the time factor. He then phoned me to say he had found a company that was already making small VHF tracking transmitters for game birds and thought they could help.

A few phone calls later and Dr Dave Butler of Perdix Wildlife Supplies was busy putting together the first prototype ear tag transmitter.

Delivery of the tag came just in time as the first Roan calf was born the next day. Finding the calf was now very easy despite the long grass and the fact that the Mother moves it pretty much every day. We now have ten tags in operation and have already removed the one from the first calf as it is now with the herd and viewable daily. This frees up the tag for another calf and as the calves join the herd so the tags are removed and switched off until needed again.

We are continuing to work closely with Perdix to further develop the tags for our application but they are already proving an invaluable management tool. The VHF transmitters Perdix have provided have given us the chance to check the calves regularly for early signs of sickness and drastically reduced the man hours involved.Two Roan Calves

I would like to thank Dr Dave Butler and all his team at Perdix for listening to my request and turning it into a reality at such short notice. Their continued efforts to improve the product shows how dedicated they are to providing wildlife solutions to any problems that should arise.”

Dave Houghton
New Wycombe Game Farm
South Africa

Our New Website Goes Live

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Perdix are proud to announce the launch of our new e-commerce website today!

Perdix Wildlife Supplies Website

We have built the new site to better serve our customers across the world. The all new site has been designed to be easier to use, faster, have improved information and help you our customers do more in your work. The new interface has been designed to be cleaner present the information to your more clearly. Combined with our new branding we hope you like the look for the new site. We responded to your feedback about the speed of the old website, which as it grew had become slower. The new website has been designed to always be fast, even on mobile phones as we know many of you purchase products when you are out in the field. International sales have always been important to Perdix as our products are used on every continent. The new site should help our international customers further as we not only display products in USD and Euros but payments can be taken in these currencies too. We still can provide next day delivery to North America and Europe so that our international customers get most of our products as quickly as our UK customers.

The e-commerce website design & development was by Innovation Visual who will be continuing to support the website for Perdix going forward. Both Perdix and Innovation Visual would welcome any feedback, both positive and negative so that we can continue to improve the website for you. We are passionate about what we do and we are confident that with our new improved site launched today we shall be able to continue to be proud of our customer service reputation and increase what we can offer to our customers worldwide! Please let us know what you think of the new site, we would love to hear from you.