Shark nets removed on Durban beaches
"Shark nets removed on Durban beaches Unsettled seas and groundswells of up to three metres...
Beachwood Mangroves Nature Reserve honorary officers, Lynne Johnson, Joan Pillay, Sameera Omar and Rosemary Harrison with an area earmarked for dune rehabilitation. Pieces of driftwood have been placed in sections along Beachwood Beach to halt dune erosion.
There is no doubt that sand dunes play a vital role in protecting our beaches and shorelines from coastal erosion. With this in mind, Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife officials have urged residents not to remove driftwood off Beachwood Beach. High tides have wreaked havoc on several dunes undermining them, leaving around a two kilometre stretch of the popular beach vulnerable.
Beachwood Mangroves Nature Reserve manager, Basil Pather, said wildlife and honorary officers had embarked on an education and awareness initiative to sensitise residents visiting the beach to the problem.
“In the past residents were taking driftwood from the beach because it made good firewood and furniture. Often the horticultural and landscaping public think that driftwood is foreign to that environment and they remove it not understanding the full impact of their actions. Climate change has meant higher tides have accelerated erosion of the dunes closest to the sea. We’ve now started placing driftwood on sections of the beach that have been severely damaged to form mini ecosystems.
“Driftwood performs the dune plant’s function, slowing the wind and trapping sand. They form the foredune (a system of sand dunes on the side nearest to the sea) which helps the dune rehabilitation. The dune degradation has also affected a creek which runs through the mangrove forest,” he said.
Pather added that dunes were vitally important because they formed a natural barrier to wind and waves by absorbing the impact of storm surges and high waves.