Our Team

Philip Richardson – Behavioural Ecologist

Ph.D. (Oxon.) (Zoology); M.Sc. (Zoology) ; B.Sc. Hons (Zoology); Pr. Sci. Nat.

Project Manager

Phil is a graduate of the Universities of Cape Town, Pretoria and Oxford with vast experience of wildlife in Africa.

Phil’s zoological background includes over 15 years’ experience as a wildlife cameraman and producer. He holds a Doctorate in Zoology from University of Oxford and was a Senior Lecturer at University of Pretoria for nine years. He has supervised eight Ph.D. and M.Sc. theses on the behavioural ecology of various African mammals and has published over 40 scientific and popular articles. Phil has also acted as the Scientific Advisor for numerous wildlife films.

Ziggy Rode – Behavioural Ecologist
M.Sc. (Environmental Management); B.Tech Degree (Nature Conservation); Pr. Sci. Nat

Senior Area Manager

Ziggy holds a Master’s Degree in Environmental Management from the Applied Behavioural Ecology and Ecosystems Research Unit, UNISA, with her thesis titled: ‘Elephant impact on the large tree component and its potential effect on selected fauna’.

Ziggy is registered with the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions as a Professional Natural Scientist, and is a member of the World Commission on Protected Areas – Young Professionals group.  Her past experience includes working on research projects with leopards, jackals/caracals, ground hornbills, vervet monkeys, meerkats, and baboons. Ziggy was also involved in working on a Trans-boundary Elephant Research Project (South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique) which was based in the Timbavati Nature Reserve, as well as conducting environmental education with local children.

Ziggy has experience in conducting flora and fauna surveys, as well as compiling comprehensive wildlife management plans and environmental compliance plans.

Ziggy joined Human Wildlife Solutions in 2012 as an Area Manager in the South East, and is now Senior Area Manager of the Baboon Management Project.  She is also currently representing HWS in a partnership with Wildlife & Ecological Investments (WEI) as a Project Ecologist.

Cath Shutte – Conservationist

Dip (Travel and Tourism)

Area Manager (South West)

Cath is a highly experienced and capable conservationist with a wealth of practical experience. After completing her Diploma in Travel and Tourism at Damlin in 2008, Cath spent five years abroad in the United States of America, Australia and the United Kingdom. Upon return to Cape Town she spent several years working in the Travel and Tourism industry.

In 2012 she decided to follow her calling in life and become a conservationist, volunteering in a range of positions while studying towards her National Diploma in Nature Conservation from UNISA. She assisted in a sable re-introduction program in Kruger National Park, volunteered in a marine survey project in Fish Hoek, and worked extensively with several baboon troops in the Tokai region.

Cath joined the HWS team in early 2015 as the Office Manager, but was promoted to South West Area Manager in November 2015.

Byron Loubser – Conservationist
N.Dip (Nature Conservation); Cert. Aquaculture

Area Manager (North)

Byron completed his National Diploma in Nature Conservation in 2010. Since completing his studies, Byron has worked for SANParks and ECO Services and has extensive experience in game capture, care and capture of coastal birds, law enforcement (appointed as a Fisheries Control Officer), environmental education, problem animal management and environmental control.

Byron joined Human Wildlife Solutions as a Field Manager in 2012, and was promoted to Response Manager in 2014.

Abel Takalani – Environmental Scientist

B.Env.Sci. Hons, B. Env.Sci.

Response Manager

Abel holds a Bachelor of Environmental Science Honours Degree from the University of Venda, Limpopo. He joined HWS in August 2012 as a Field Manager, and has since been promoted to Assistant Area Response Manager within the Baboon Management Project.

Abel has also spent time as a Field Ranger within the Table Mountain National Park, SANParks where his time was spent implementing management plans, including rehabilitation systems, soil erosion and invasive alien control. He also ran law enforcement patrols, assisted with fire management and animal welfare.  

Stephanus Ferreira – Conservationist

N. Dip (Nature Conservation)

Assistant Response Manager

Stephanus obtained his National Diploma in Nature Conservation from the Tshwane University of Technology in 2013.  Stephanus worked at the Timbavati Private Nature Reserve during his practical year, in 2013, as an Ecological Technician and has extensive experience in the care and breeding of various large predators, game capture, animal off takes, game counts, anti-poaching, ecological burning, invasive alien clearing, veld condition assessments, erosion control and the compiling of management plans.

Stephanus is currently busy completing his B. Tech in Nature Conservation at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.

Stephanus joined the Human Wildlife Solutions in November 2013 as a field manager and has since been promoted to an Assistant Response Manager.

Phil McLean – Invasive Species Specialist

M.Sc. (underway), B.Sc. Hons (Botany), B.Sc., PCO (Environmental Weeds)

Invasive Species Consultant

Phil is busy completing his Masters Degree through the Centre for invasion Biology at Stellenbosch University. His project revolves around invasive plants within urban settings. He has worked with the City of Cape Town’s Invasive Species Unit where he was responsible for locating, identifying and mapping invasive species as well as gaining access to private property and managing teams responsible for invasive plant control. He subsequently worked for the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) in the Western Cape team of their Early Detection and Rapid Response Programme where he conducted field verifications, herbicide and other control mechanism trials as well as compiling post border Risk Assessments for listed and suspect species.

In his spare time he heads up an NGO tasked with looking after the ecology of an urban river in Cape Town, the Friends of the Liesbeek. He is a passionate conservationist who believes in the strengthening of natural ecosystems through the removal of threatening invasive species and is particularly keen on a pragmatic, ‘get-it-done’ approach. He believes education is a vital tool for conservation and loves the opportunity to inform people from individuals to auditoriums full, about the wonders of nature and how we can all help look after it.

Anthony Roberts – Plant Ecologist and Biological Control Specialist

Ph.D. (Zoology); B.Sc. Hons (Botany); B.Sc. (Botany & Environmental & Geographical Studies)

Invasive Species Consultant

Anthony is a graduate of the University of Cape Town having completed his studies in 2006.

Through his tertiary studies Anthony developed a strong knowledge of plants and invertebrates. He has a broad interest in both flora and fauna and having spent over 5 years employed in conservation areas in South Africa he has lectured and supervised students in nature conservation and mammal research.  He has a well-developed understanding of game management including captive breeding programmes.

Anthony believes strongly in the development of human capacity through environmental projects and sees great opportunity in supporting disadvantaged communities through upskilling and job creation programmes that the management of invasive alien species require.

Jacques Pretorius – Environmentalist

M.Phil. (Environmental Managment); B.A. Hons. (International Relations), B.A. (Social Dynamics).

Research and Development Officer

Jacques completed a BA in Social Dynamics before moving to the Sabi Sand in 2006 to work as a guide in the lodging industry. In 2008 he completed an Honours degree in International Relations at the University of Stellenbosch. The focus of his studies was on the human aspects of conservation in Africa and how international environmental management and conservation governance structures are influencing conservation in the SADC region.

During 2009 and 2010 he completed a MPhil in Environmental Management at the University of Stellenbosch. Masters level studies were focused on further investigating the relationships between humans and the environment in Southern Africa, specifically the structural aspects of management regimes in the region

As part of the baboon management team on the Cape Peninsula, his dissertation focused on the co-management structures for baboon management on the peninsula and the problems and pitfalls surrounding this type of management structure.

Since completing his studies he has held positions in the Conservation, Environmental Management and Corporate Sustainability sectors. All of these positions involved research on innovative solutions to conflict situations as it pertains to humans and the environment.

He has also held positions in the formal education sector, both as a lecturer for Ndip Nature Management students and at a primary and tertiary education level as environmental education facilitator.

Jacques joined the HWS team in 2017.

Phillip Olivier – Zoologist

M.Sc. (Zoology); B.Sc. Hons. (Zoology), B.Sc. (Geography).

Assistant Research and Development Officer

Phillip holds degrees in geo science and zoology including an M.Sc. degree in Zoology focussing on wildlife management.  He has formal training in GIS software and has experience in aquatic ecology and water quality measurements. Additionally, Phillip has done specialist zoological studies for environmental impact assessments and worked as a laboratory and teaching assistant at the Department of Zoology and Entomology at the University of the Free State.    

Phillip is passionate about conservation and a real tech head, consequently, he is now responsible for managing HWS’s tech hardware which includes GPS tracking collars.

Phillip Joined HWS in 2015 as an intern and has since been promoted to Assistant Research and Development Officer.

Kim Diedericks

Office Manager

Her excellent inter-personal, problem solving and administrative skills stems from her project management and legal administrative background. Kim was previously employed at a local environmental consultancy where she provided support and co-ordination on a variety of environmental assessment projects, public participation processes, environmental monitoring and control and assisted with the implementation of environmental management systems.

Kim also has experience with the compilation of Environmental Management Programmes and has four years’ experience as an independent Environmental Control Officer, monitoring and reporting on construction activities as well as providing environmental training and education to site labour.

Her legal administrative background at two local environmental law firms contributes to her proficiency in the drafting and formatting of communications and reports. Furthermore, she holds a national qualification in Project Management, a Paralegal Diploma and secretarial and minute taking certificates.

Kim is an analytical thinker, passionate about the well-being of people and animals and aims to maintain professional and meaningful relationships.