Gauteng and NW Province

Biodiversity treasures of North West

RUSTENBURG -“The biodiversity treasures of the North West Province” was the theme of the talk given by Pieter Nel, Manager of Ecological Services of the North West Parks and Tourism Board, when he addresses a meeting of the Rustenburg Wildlife Society.

Pieter told the meeting that they manage 14 parks throughout the North West Province from Madikwe and Pilanesberg to Wolwespruit and Bloemhofdam Nature Reserve in the Vaal River, to the Molopo Nature Reserve in the Kalahari. The North West Province is the 6th largest province in S.A. and the 7th densest with a population of 4 million people. 50% Of the province is taken up by agriculture and mining. Registered game farms cover approx. 1.2million ha.

Further in his address Pieter Nel explained how the geology, rainfall patterns and land cover affects the biodiversity of the province. Unique biological features in the province include amongst others the Aeolian pans (eg. Barberspan), the range of norite hills north of Magaliesberg, the Magaliesberg itself, the Swartruggens and Ghaap plateau, as well as the Vredefort Dome – the result of a meteor impact 65 million years ago.

The proposed Magaliesberg Biosphere is an example where private sector and government is working together to achieve common conservation goals.


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