May 08 - Barbary Macaque Management Plan Outlined

apesThe Government of Gibraltar has announced its Barbary Macaque Management Plan and is now preparing an implementation schedule which will include a public launch.

The Plan, which has been prepared in consultation with experts in Gibraltar and abroad, incorporates a number of actions aimed at improving a wide range of aspects of Gibraltar’s famous monkeys.

The main aims of the Plan include:

Stabilising the Barbary macaque population; Minimising incursions into built-up areas and preventing the establishment of urbanised groups; Improving monitoring of the macaques; Increasing the research and knowledge base; Increasing veterinary involvement in the care of the macaques; Improving communication of macaque matters to the public; Maximising the use of the macaques as an educational resource; Improving their value as a tourist product.

Measures to achieve these will include:

            -  Greater presence at the main sites on the Upper Rock, with operatives working with tourism operators in helping both in interpretation and in discouraging illegal feeding and other interactions.

            -  Greater and more active monitoring of group size, structure and movements.

            -  Greater ability to attend to calls-out and deter monkeys becoming established in built-up areas.

            -  Improvements to the feeding sites on the Upper Rock.

            -  Provision of ponds on the Upper Rock. - Better interpretation facilities on the Upper Rock

            -  Better education of visitors including production of leaflets and other literature.

            -  Establishment of a research and a conservation advisory panel of Gibraltar and international experts.

            -  Continuing research into the species.

            -  Pursuance of contraception, active management and exportation as the preferred management tools.

The resources will now begin to be put into place, following which a detailed presentation will be made to the public.