Kabelious Reserve Action Group Newsletter - August 2020

It is hard to believe that just over two years ago the Kabeljous Reserve was an unused, overgrown area of land.

Earlier this year, our KRAG logo was launched (see top of newsletter). It was developed by Johno Swanevelder and CCPrints has sponsored the printing of signs and stickers for use on volunteers’ vehicles.

It has been wonderful to see how well used and popular our reserve has become. It is encouraging to all our hard-working volunteers to see a full parking area, and visitors, both local and from out of town, enjoying themselves hiking, cycling, trail running, picnicking and bird watching. The lagoon water pushing up into the wetlands has given the reserve a whole different look recently, and it is possible to canoe beyond porcupine bridge. This has also attracted much birdlife.

Unfortunately, several events had to be cancelled. The popular moonwalk was cancelled firstly due to bad weather, and then the lockdown. We are looking forward to holding these again as soon as possible.

We were also due to host two trail runs. The 60km Smhart trail run in April, and the Winterfest trail run in July. We look forward to being involved in these events again next year.
Despite the lockdown, our volunteers obtained working permits which allowed projects to be tackled during level 4.

Two surveys have been carried out in the reserve this year. A small mammal survey was done, assisted by Prof. Graham Kerley, Director of the Centre for Conservation Ecology at NMU. We were loaned 40 Scherman traps which were set up in different vegetation types. They were checked and cleared three times daily over a period of 5 days. Two species were recorded, striped field mice (Rhabdomys pumilo) and vlei rats (Otomys irroratus). We plan to start writing up the report on this survey later in the year.

KRAG in partnership with the Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm, installed advanced wildlife acoustic equipment and collected data on bat activity for 3 months. This data will allow identification of the bat species present in the reserve. We will be consulting with bat specialists, as well as NMU to analyse the data.
We have a rich source of wildlife in our small reserve. Camera traps have revealed over 30 “larger” mammals, the bird club has a list of more than 150 different bird species, and reptiles are frequently seen.

To read more on the summary of maintenance activities carried out over the past few weeks, click here.

 

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