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International Day of Happiness

March 19, 2019


Wednesday March 20, 2019 features the sixth annual celebration of the United Nation’s International Day of Happiness. The 2019 World Happiness Report will be published on that day. In the 2018 report, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Iceland and Switzerland topped the rankings and all scored well on the main factors found to support happiness: caring, freedom, generosity, honesty, health, income and good governance. The report is produced by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network which is also involved in producing the Global Happiness and Well-being Policy Report (the second edition of which was issued last month).

Human-Baboon Conflict Mitigation

February 25, 2019

Baboons in pecan tree-Greyton, SA


The chacma baboon (Papio ursinus) is one of the largest of all monkeys and is a relatively common sight in the Cape Province in South Africa.  In fact, the 500 or so baboons living on the mountain slopes of the Cape Peninsula (Cape Town, South Africa) are now the focus of serious human-wildlife conflict concerns.  The baboons have learned that food and people are closely linked.  Individual baboons have learned to open car doors parked in the Cape Point Nature Reserve and baboon troops now get into houses and raid refrigerators in Cape Town and its suburbs.  However, the human-baboon conflict is widespread in South Africa and the following is a description of how the Greyton community is resolving this conflict.

Plastics in the Ocean

February 25, 2019

As the global production of plastic items explodes, plastic debris and waste is accumulating across the planet’s oceans. A 20-fold increase in plastic production occurred between 1964 and 2014, and the rate of production continues to increase (see figure:  407 million tonnes in 2015, 302 million tonnes of which ended up in the waste stream in 2015). Between them, China (60mt), the USA (38mt), Germany (14.5 mt), and Brazil (12 mt) account for 40% of this waste.  An excellent update on this topic is provided by a new website – Our World in Data – produced by academics at Oxford University.

Data from publications by R Geyer, JR Jambeck & KL Law, 2017, in Science Advances 3(7).

Costa Rica

October 26, 2018

–WBI’s first blog details the impressive,positive changes in the human-dog relationship in Costa Rica over the past twenty to thirty years.  These developments are occurring in countries around the globe but on different timescales in each country.

Dog Management in the USA

October 26, 2018

– A recent analysis of trends in US dog populations and dog management has been published in the Open Access journal, Animals by Andrew Rowan and Tamara Kartal .  The article was published on April 28, 2018 and has received 1,779 views since then. 

Baboon Monitor Team

October 26, 2018

A recent posting on Facebook by a resident of Greyton, a town (and artists’ retreat) about 80 miles from Cape Town in South Africa, asked readers if they were wondering why they were not seeing baboons around or in Greyton.