How Noise Pollution Affects Wildlife

How Noise Pollution Impacts Wildlife

posted in: Game Drives | 0

Most visitors to nature reserves or national parks, whether on a self-drive safari or guided safari, go there for the sights and sounds of the natural environment.

We love the ‘noise’ of twittering songbirds, yapping geckos, roaring lions, grunting hippos, howling jackals, wind rustling in the trees, barking hyenas, the whinny of zebras, the cry of the eagle, baboons bawling, water flowing, and the sawing of a leopard because natural soundscapes are soothing to the soul!

Unfortunately the visitor noise pollution in nature reserves and national parks is on the rise and the great outdoors is becoming a lot less peaceful. The excess noise can do more than just annoy human visitors. For plants and animals, the disturbance can upset entire habitats. Some plants need silence for seed spreading — cars and loud humans can scare away rodents that might otherwise do the job. Animals need silence to hear predators approaching or to communicate with their mates. On the other hand while noise pollution makes some animals more vulnerable to predators, it can also have the opposite effect, making it harder for some predators to find food. Bats and owls rely on sound to hunt, for instance, which may not work if noise pollution obscures the subtle sounds of their prey. Birds whose song would normally travel 100 meters would, with a 10% increase in noise, have its melody subdued to a 10-meter radius.

The bottom line is “Less Visitor Noise = Better Game Viewing” and a more pleasing wilderness experience for visitors and animals!


The Noise policy at Mabalingwe Nature Reserve applies to the entire property and all lodges within the reserve:

Please note that strict noise restrictions apply as you are in a nature reserve.

Noise travels far in the open areas and guests are asked to keep all noise to a minimum at all times.

We kindly request that you be courteous towards the wildlife and your neighbours and keep the noise levels to a reasonable level.

10:00 to 22:00 – Low noise (no screaming and shouting) and soft music (for your ears only).
22:00 to 10:00 – No noise and no music.
No loud noise or music (portable speakers or music from motor vehicles) will be tolerated / permitted at any time.

A hefty fine (up to R 4 000) will be issued by the nature reserve directly to guest(s) that disregards this noise policy – this fine will not be covered by the lodge.

Children are welcome. Please note that young children must be under the supervision of their parents at all times.

Under age (teenage) children must be accompanied by adults.

No parties.
No pets are allowed under any circumstances.

Noise policies are regulated by “The Noise Control Regulations In Terms Of Section 25 Of The Environment Conservation Act, 1989 (Act No. 73 Of 1989) SA”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *