Invasive species are a concern in all biomes and ecosystems across South Africa, with 180 species of invasive alien plants already infesting the equivalent of 10 million ha, or 8% of South Africa’s surface area. That's bad.
To add to it, South Africa has the highest known concentration of threatened plants and the highest extinction estimates for any area in the world. About 20% of biodiversity in Gauteng is not protected.
Businesses and schools all feel the pinch of the recession. When residents lend a helping hand it is much appreciated. Hennopsrivier Primary School parents and local residents have been very supportive, says Hennops principal Pieter du Plessis. He thanks Billy le Roux for donating a vacuum cleaner and a new motor for the gate and Christo van der Merwe for two roll-of-honour boards.
“Claudio Bufacchi has been a great help with computer equipment and with setting up a computer centre for us,” Pieter says. “The biggest bonus was the computer lessons he presented to the Grade 7 learners. Thank you!”
Part of the October Veld Plants Walk took place on the to-be-proclaimed Egoli Granite Grassland (EGG) nature reserve in Doornrandje. Prof George Bredenkamp, who led the walk, was involved with the original identification and description of EGG in Gauteng. He says: “Human impacts on this sensitive ecosystem have resulted in an altered species composition, loss of many species, and a change from a species-rich grassland with high conservation value to a species-poor grassland with low conservation value. The conservation of the last remaining relicts of original Egoli Granite Grassland is essential.”
The tension in the SciBono Science Museum Auditorium in Johannesburg on Thursday 15 October was palpable. The occasion was the bi-annual MTK (MmaTshepo Khumbane) Awards ceremony, organised by the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (GDARD). The awards serve to recognize and reward individuals, communities and schools which take responsibility for their environment and for people in their care.
The fires that swept through the Conservancy this year left vast areas looking bare and bleak. Add to that the fact that spring and summer rains continue to fall Elsewhere in Gauteng, bypassing our “droë driehoek” once again! (What attraction does Elsewhere have for the rains?)