Friday, 26 October 2012

On Saturday 27th October The Tree Group will join Bot Soc for a walk in Burman Bush.

On Saturday 27th October we will join Bot Soc for a walk in Burman Bush.

Meet in the parking area at 2pm.

walkers from the Durban Green Corridor



Some people might like to do the longish walk,  quite steep in parts, to the lookout platform.  There are  great views of the Umgeni River from there.
 There are also shorter walks in the forest, and one can also  walk up the old road.
 We can split into groups if necessary.

Do bring a chair and picnic tea for afterwards.
It should be lovely after all the rain – let’s hope for a dry day on Saturday!

Jill Seldon

031 209 3977

Monday, 22 October 2012

WESSA Share-Net is offering four resources to support your ‘birding activities’! Birding Big Day is coming up on 24 November!|

Bird of the Year 2012: African Fish-Eagle (Haliaeetus vocifer)

Birding Big Day is coming up on 24 November!

Birds are the most studied, the most easily seen and accessible, the most melodious and many think, the most beautiful animals on Earth. In celebration of Birding Big Day on Saturday, 24 November, WESSA Share-Net is offering four resources to support your ‘birding activities’!  

A Beginners Guide to Owls, written and compiled by Geoff Lockwood includes Owls and People; Life of Owls; Owls as Predators; Detailed information on Barn Owls, Grass Owls, Wood Owls, Marsh Owls, African Scops Owl, Whitefaced Owl, Pearlspotted Owl, Barred Owl, Cape Eagle Owl, Spotted Eagle Owl, Giant Eagle Owl and the Pels Fishing Owl; Finding Owls; Attracting Owls; and, Owl Projects.

How To …. Build an Owl Box. This “How To” pamphlet gives detailed instructions on building both Spottled Eagle Owl and Barn Owl nesting boxes.
envirokids birds.jpg

EnviroKids magazine on African Birds – articles include Birds in our lives, Bird basics, Beaks and feet tell a story,
Our special birds, Saving Wattled Cranes, Bird record holders, and the Secret life of PCGs.

Three comprehensive school lesson plans, with a Natural Science focus, on ‘Birds of Prey.

For the month of November only, you can purchase this pack of four resources for R25.
For more details or to place your order, please contact WESSA Share-Net, PO Box 394, Howick 3290.
Tel (033) 330 3931 ext 2124/2144, e-mail or

Monday, 15 October 2012

WESSA Southern KZN visit to Mbumbazi, Saturday, October 20th: at 8:15 for 8:30 am

Greetings one and all.

Are you enjoying the weather? Our last walk was decidedly damp, but those who came along to Umtamvuna were rewarded with a lovely display of spring flowers.
This month we are planning to visit Mbumbazi, to see how the flora is doing there. A very different ecosystem, with different geology, topography and micro-climate.
The walks can be a bit steep, but are generally quite easy going. And there is always the chance of seeing something different in the fauna department. Is there really a leopard there?

So please make a plan and come and join us on Saturday, October 20th: at 8:15 for 8:30 am. The usual terms and conditions apply: bring a picnic, and be prepared for walking over grassy and stony tracks. And since the views are magnificent and the zebra are co-operative, a camera may be worth-while – even if the leopard are elusive.

The arrangements have yet to be confirmed, but I am optimistic. They have always managed to fit us in before, and it is only a case of making sure the gate is unlocked for us. But please contact me beforehand just in case – or the risk is your own!

To get there you have two alternatives.
Form Port Shepstone go inland on the N2 to Paddock, and turn left at the petrol station; go past the police station and follow the road for about 2km. Turn right on the D174, and follow this to its end, at the entrance to the reserve.
Alternatively, turn inland at Shelly beach on the road to Izotsha, and follow this until it becomes a sand road. Keep going for another 5.6km and then turn left on the D174, and follow this to its end, at the entrance to the reserve.
A special thanks to Peter Vos who some years ago sent me a map – it is still a work of art, and most helpful…

I have sent a notice to the SC Herald, as follows:

Saturday, October 20th: at 8:15 for 8:30 am – The Southern KZN branch of WESSA will be walking among the hills – Join us for a walk in the Mbumbazi Nature Reserve, near Paddock (venue to be confirmed), followed by a picnic. We recommend that you bring refreshments, suitable footwear, hats, and some lunch. Meet at the Reserve. All are welcome. To confirm the details and get directions contact Paddy on 039-695-2827, or Dorothy on 072-219-1548.

Hope to see you there.

Kind regards,
Paddy Norman
Branch Chairman,
WESSA – Southern KZN

Sea View D’MOSS walk 21 October 2012

Sea View D’MOSS walk 21 October 2012
September was such a busy month for everyone we didn’t do a walk. Our October walk is next Sunday 21 October, starting at 10 o’clock. We are meeting just before ten at George Codnor Park, at the top of Coedmore Road just near the bridge over the railway line. Coedmore Road is off Sarnia Road opposite Elgin Road at the robot. The park next to Elgin Road is Beacon Park. It sounds confusing, but we will be there at 9:30; turn off Sarnia Road into Coedmore Road, and then first right to the parking area under the trees. You will recognize walker types.

There is plenty of parking and your car will be safe. During the walk “Friends of the Sea View D’MOSS walkers” will set up and prepare tea, coffee, and juice, and biscuits for the end of the walk. There is no charge for the walk, but the friends ask for a R5 donation to cover their costs.

We start at 10 o’clock, or as soon after, and set off across Sarnia Road to join the D’MOSS trails from Elgin Road, and then onto the trails between the Sarnia Road ridge and the Umbilo River valley. Our route will take us to a view site from which we will be able to see the Umbilo River flow under the M7, sweep round in a wide bend, and flow under the M7 again just at the start of the Umbilo canal. The river is the boundary on three sides of the Portuguese Club and its grounds. The Natural Resources Department has maintained these trails and they are quite easy walking. We will follow different trails out and back; and perhaps even a recently cut new trail which we will inspect during this week.

The walk is in shade for much of the trail, but hats, sun block, sturdy shoes, and some liquid is recommended, especially if it is a hot day. We should be back at the start (George Codnor Park), and tea with biscuits, within two, or two and a half hours. We don’t rush, so nobody need worry about being made to hurry too fast.
If you want to ask anything, please telephone me.

Derek Nicholson
031 465 4278     or   072 400 1216

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Workshop 29 September 2012 | eThekwini Natural Resources Parks, Leisure & Cemeteries Department

Crispin on his birthday celebrating FOPV and his 65th

Jabulani Mthethwa

Prof Baijnath and his passion

Vuyi Radebe Thabethe thanking Prof Baijnath

Jean Lindsey, KZNCA, thanking Thami Kunene who received the certificate on behalf of  the Friends of Virginia Bush
eThekwini’s Vuyi Radebe Thabethe from the department of  Natural Resources Parks, Leisure & Cemeteries Department, organised a workshop, together with her department,  for stakeholders within the city who are contributing to greening and enhancing biodiversity through conservation efforts.  These are volunteers from community based organisation ranging from communities in Folweni to Lamontville as well as the formalised conservancies registered with the KwaZulu-Natal Conservancies Association and Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife, and non-government organisations.

The full programme covered talks by several speakers such as Crispin Hemson on the work of the Friends of Pigeon Valley, Virginia Cameron of Birdlife Port Natal, young impassioned Jabulani Mthethwa from the Ngqondozethu Conservancy,  Bongi Khanyile  from the Folweni members group, Paul Seaman from UKZN on his thesis of a “ Critical assessment of the efficacy of the D’MOSS implementation strategy in the Outer West of Durban” and last but not least by any manner of means Professor Himansu Baijnath on the city’s Kniphofia’s.

 Prof Baijnath emphasised the value of Durban’s Big 4. These are Kniphofia linearifolia (at Caversham), littoralis, pauciflora and gracilis.  The minute surviving gene pool for the Kniphofia of Durban is under severe threat as the Clairwood race course development is under discussion.   “Clairwood Racecourse is built on land that was originally a swamp and was opened on May 24, 1921. It is known as the “Garden Course” because of the fauna and flora”. 

Thembinkosi Ngcobo, head of Natural Resources Parks, Leisure & Cemeteries Department thanked his department and staff and all those present, emphasising the role of the municipal employee as someone who serves the people of Durban.