Coast KZN

30 Oct 2016

Alien eradication project takes on next phase

Mariclair Smit (Northglen News)

Nathi Ndimande and Busi Duma have received the necessary training to properly identify and remove the alien invasive species.

Alien eradication project takes on next phase

Efforts to restore coastal strips in the eThekwini region to their indigenous states are once again being implemented in eMdloti. Last week, a team of nine trained contractors continued clearing the alien species along Bellamont Road. The current contract is set to be completed by the end of the week.

The current work involves the second phase of the project. In April the contractors began culling the alien species from the bottom of the residential road and then in September, the locals were invited to participate in the environmental restoration project.

Dozens of community members rolled up their sleeves, slipped on their gloves and gumboots, and spent the day filling the empty spaces left by the removed aliens with indigenous trees, such Tinderwood, Coral tree and the Natal wild banana tree.

The project, instigated by the Endangered Wildlife Trust’s (EWT) Threatened Amphibian Programme, was launched with the purpose of rehabilitating key habitats for the critically-endangered Pickersgill’s reed frog.

According to Dr Jeanne Tarrant of the EWT the contractors have received relevant training for invasive and indigenous plant identification as well plant propagation and health and safety.

Working alongside the eThekwini Municipality’s Restoration Ecology Branch (Environmental Planning and Climate Protection Department), Mount Moreland Conservancy, the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA) the contractors are set to remove invasive plants from over 600 hectres of wetland and coastal vegetation.

The project is ongoing and is expected to be completed in three years time.

Terry Rens of the eMdloti Urban Improvement Project (UIP) once again appealed to the community to refrain from illegally dumping in the protected areas, as it would jeopardise the progress of the project.


Online Article