A concerted effort is being made by the Nature’s Valley trust and the ratepayers
to conserve the delicate ecosystem river estuary and the fauna and flora that exist
in this portion of the National Park and trying to manage a constant onslaught of
developers that inevitably destroy the environment.
The education and exposure of youth groups to conservation is ongoing.
Natures Valley is a situated at the bottom of the Groot river pass and is a triangular
shaped piece of beforrested land, wedged in between the Indian ocean, the
Groot river estuary, which forms a lagoon, and a mountainess escarpment,
a truly unique location.
In an effort to preserve this beautiful piece of Gods handiwork the Nature's
Valley Trust was established three years ago and focuses on the protection of the
environmental integrity of Nature's Valley and the surrounding area. Funding from
WWF has helped to establish a range of projects aimed at preserving and raising
awareness of the coastal, forest and fynbos areas of this unique environment. Volunteers
working with the Trust will help out on a number of projects simultaneously, but
may choose to put their efforts into one or two main projects once they have started.
The projects are all ongoing and will be constantly evolving and new initiatives
are being introduced on a regular basis.
The Brenton Blue butterfly
has not been seen in
Nature's Valley since 1984. There are now plans to reintroduce this rare species
to the area. Volunteers will assist with the intensive monitoring of the butterflies,
host plants and associated ants. In addition, the reserve needs to be maintained
through the removal of alien vegetation (saplings), excess bracken fern etc. The
existing paths through the reserve need to be made more user-friendly and mapped.
Interpretative signage needs to be developed for the reserve, together with a brochure
explaining a little more about the flora and fauna in the reserve.
Phyl Martin Park Botanical Garden
Assistance with maintenance of the gardens, pathways and production of interpretive
signage and brochure. Development of a 'treasure route' for children through the
Both the above areas plus a 'forest route' and 'coast route' need to be planned,
mapped and a flyer produced for distribution in local schools. Volunteers would
also visit local schools to boost environmental awareness and advertise the availability
of 'outdoor classrooms'. All routes need to be developed in order that they can
be undertaken as 'self-guided' routes.
Removal of Invasive Plants
Volunteers would work in conjunction with the existing Open Spaces Committee to
remove invasive plants from the Valley.
Conflict between baboons and residents in Nature's Valley is an ongoing problem.
Baboons entering properties pose a threat to both the property and the residents.
Volunteers will assist with a seeking to determine why baboons enter homes, measures
that may be taken to deter them. A record of incidents and interviews with residents
concerned about baboon incidents also needs to be carried out. This will include
research into the design and costs of baboon-proof dustbins, etc. This will provide
information for a booklet on "Living with Baboons".
Monitoring of the estuaries (Groot River and Salt River), beaches, fishermen, forests,
etc. This will involve daily monitoring of the beaches, talking to local fishermen
and establishing information about their fishing practices. Volunteers will aim
to raise awareness of safe fishing practices and encourage the removal of litter.
There is likely to be further monitoring of local rivers as concerns have been raised
about the future of these local water sources. This will include monitoring pollution,
rate of flow, health of invertebrate species living in the rivers etc.