The Project


The Bat–eared Fox Project

Asks for a future


The Bat-eared Fox Project was founded in June 2000 in Dortmund, Germany, as a non-profit organisation (Das Löffelhund-Projekt e.V.) for the protection of small carnivores, especially the bat-eared fox on farmland in Namibia. Since March 2003 the project has its base on the farm Nanania No 47 in the south of Namibia.

The principle of the Bat-eared Fox Project is the efficient mixture of scientific research and the protection of wildlife. Our research provides us with the data about behaviour and living conditions of bat-eared foxes and other small carnivores on farmland. But also enables us to understand more about the influence of factors like poaching, road kills and infections on the survival of these species.

The Bat-eared Fox Project was initiated without a time limit and we hope to become a permanent Institution in Namibia. That is why we intent to build up a research and information centre on Nanania, which will also house a small clinic for orphaned and injured wild animals. Very important for us is a good relationship with Namibian farmers, from which we already receive a lot of interest and support. This is the reason why the future information centre will especially encourage the exchange of information with and between farmers and farmworkers. As we can only be successful in our aim to protect wildlife on farmland in close cooperation with the farmers and their employees. 

But we also want to make as many people as possible aware of the diversity of Namibian wildlife and how important it is to save as many species as possible. 

In cooperation with Dr. Tubbesing from the Rhino Park Veterinary Clinic, we could also build up a relocation program for unwanted wild animals, like leopards, cheetahs, caracals and many more. Cage trapped animals normally get shot, but we could ask the farmers to let us pick up and relocate these animals. 

The most urgent support we need as soon as possible is enough funds to cover our current maintenance costs and to purchase a second hand 4x4. This would for now give us the chance to continue with our research work and to concentrate on the future of the Bat-eared Fox Project.

 Business Plan for the Bat-eared Fox Project

A: Necessary repairs and improvements

We generate our power with the help of solar panels and a diesel generator, but the existent system is already to small and will not be able to deliver enough power for our future needs. That is why we need to replace the inverter with a stronger one, replace the old Batteries and add some more solar panels or a wind charger.

  • Existent cages need to be repaired and enlarged
  • We currently employ 4 people out of 3 families, who are living with us on the farm, their living quarters (location) should be renovated,
  • B: Needs to improve and extent the research work
  • At least one more research assistant, so that we are able to conduct the necessary research work not only on Nanania, but on the same time also in other areas.

    • Technical equipment, like digital and video cameras, GPS, radio collars, laptops
    • Two used 4x4s cars for the fieldwork, visiting farmers and schools, attending meetings, collection and transport of animals
    • Information material needs to be printed and distributed, in order to attract more attention to our work
    • Publication of the already gathered material about bat-eared foxes
  • C: The Bat-eared Fox Research Centre
  • 1. The research centre

    Living quarter for research assistant

    • Office with desk, Computer, storing facility for technical equipment etc
    • Small laboratory, with fridge and freezing possibilities for storing samples and dead animals for further examinations
  • 2. The clinic
  • Cages in different sizes

    • Food kitchen with storing facility
    • Examination room with storing facilities for medication and dressings
    • Transport boxes in different sizes for animals
  • 3.) The information centre
  • Room with information on display

    • Conference room
  • D: The Bat-eared Fox Guestfarm
  • Improvement of the three existing guestrooms, building of more double rooms, or set up a new complex and use the existing rooms for assistants and trainees  

    • Manager for the farm, guest and administration work
    • Living quarter for the manager
  • E: Maintenance costs
  • Salaries

    • Diesel, petrol, gas
    • Service costs (oil, engine parts etc.)
    • Feed for the animals
    • Insurance for farm and cars 
    • Telephone and internet connection
  • Remarks:
  • Existing buildings on the farm are the main house and a second building, which contains three guestrooms and a flat with two rooms, kitchen and bathroom.

    The flat is currently rented out to a couple who would be interested to work as manager and research assistant. This would save the need to build extra living quarters.

    The most important building is the research centre with the clinic and cages, there is space in the main building which can be used so long for displaying information and holding meetings.

    Also important is the extension and improvement of the guestfarm, because with becoming an attraction we will be able to cover more and more costs ourselves. An attraction we can become not only by involving the guests in our work, like other projects already do, but by giving them the chance to come in contact with animal species they normally do not see, or not even now. But we will not only be able to show off our animals, but also discuss with our guests which role this mostly overlooked species play in their environment.

    Our current costs split up in:

    • Salaries for:
    • Research Manager
    • Farm Manager
    • Research Assistant
    • Farm employees 3
    • Maintenance costs:
    • Diesel
    • Petrol
    • Gas
    • Insurance
    • Service parts and oil
    • Research costs:
    • Telephone and Internet connection
    • Feed for foxes
    • Paper and cartridges
  •   Our current running costs per month are an estimated NAD 40 000 (Euro 5000)