Holiday Program 2014

 
Wacky Wild Life Holiday Fun!


The new Wacky Wildlife holiday program hosted by Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area has produced great results for future events, with an average group of 25 participants a day. Looking back at the week that was from the 8th to the 11th July, whereby all children between six and twelve years experienced glorious adventures. The week was filled with games, creativity, activities, crazy competitions, with lots of fun and learning. All the participants left the program with tremendous knowledge and understanding of biodiversity imparted in both formal and informal ways. Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area would like to thank all those that supported this event, especially those that made this event possible. We hope to continue hosting more of these exciting programmes in future.


 
The FKRCA 6th Annual General Meeting 


 The Friends of Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area hereby give notice of their 6th Annual General Meeting to be held on Monday evening, 19th May 2014.

The meeting will be held in the Protea Room at the Kenilworth Racecourse (directions will be provided at the boom gate).

Meeting commences at 6:30pm promptly - kindly arrive from 6:00pm onwards. 

In accordance with the FKRCA Constitution, the committee members, having served two years, will stand down and a new committee will be elected at this AGM. All present committee members have agreed to stand for re-nomination should they be so requested and serve another term if elected. However, an appeal is made either to nominate another member or to put yourself forward for election to the committee. All nominations can be sent to fkrca-owner@yahoogroups.com 

Agenda: 
1. Welcome and approval of the Minutes of the previous AGM 
2. Chairman's Report 
3. Treasurer's Report 
4. Election of new committee 
5. General discussion 
6. Overview of the Conservation Area by the Reserve Manager, Rob Slater. 
7. Short presentation. Topic and speaker to be confirmed 
8. Closing 

Tea, coffee and biscuits will be served. 

It is anticipated that the meeting will last no longer than one hour. All past, present and aspiring future Members and their friends are encouraged to attend. You are also reminded that your annual subscription of R25 is due and may be paid on the evening. 

 

 
Notification of Ecological Burn to be conducted in the Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area (KRCA) March – April 2014

Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area (KRCA), Rosmead Avenue; has received a permit from the City of Cape Town’s Fire Services and Air Pollution Control Department, to conduct an ecological burn of Fynbos.

This permit allows the burning of three different sections, of an approximate total of 15ha of Critically Endangered Cape Flats sand fynbos in KRCA, as part of a prescribed ecological burning programme. The burn will take place on one suitable day between March and April 2014 and will be completed within the course of the day.

The smoke and heat of the fire will enable the long dormant Fynbos seeds to germinate. Fynbos is a fire-driven system and relies on fire to regenerate and maintain species diversity. In 2010, 2011 and 2012 other areas of KRCA were successfully burned and numerous plant species have emerged since.

The vision for KRCA is that its Critically Endangered Cape Flats sand fynbos be conserved in an ecologically viable state with a high diversity of indigenous plants and animals. Following the correct ecological burning regime will help to meet this target and ensure that KRCA is maintained for continued enjoyment by both present and future generations.

For any queries, please contact Air Pollution Control at 021 590 1419 or the KRCA Site Manager at 021 700 1843 (Conservation2k@kenilworthracing.com).


 KRCA Annual Nature Walk

On Sunday the 24th November, the Friends of KRCA lead a Nature Walk through the conservation area with a group of approximately 20 Adults and a few enthusiastic children. The walk offered a few wonderful botanical surprises which included spotting Ixias, Aristeas, and a few spectacular Erica species. The group was fortunate enough to spot a Mole snake (Pseudaspis cana) crossing the horse track in an attempt to avoid the 40 odd footsteps walking in its' direction.

KRCA would like to thank the Friends group for hosting the walk, as well as all those who came to be part of the final community event for the Friends of KRCA this year.



Frog walks at KRCA

On the 7th and 8th August KRCA hosted its first Frog Walk for 2013. The Frog Walks were both hosted by the resident KRCA Nature Conservation students for 2013, Sabelo Memani and Grant Alexander and were attended by over 40 interested members of the public. The attendees consisted of a diverse group with ages ranging from 5 to 80 years old. Everyone in attendance however shared one thing in common, a keen enthusiasm to head off into the wetlands and find as many frogs as possible.

Top on the list for most attendees was to have a sighting of the critically endangered Micro Frog (Microbatrachella capensis). The Frog Walk did not disappoint with as many as 15 Micro Frogs being spotted over the two day event. In addition to this guests were also treated to sightings of Flat Caco (Cacosternum platys), Banded Stream Frogs (Strongylopus bonaespei) and Clicking Stream Frogs (Strongylopus grayii) as well some “non-frog” residence such as the Common Skink (Mabuya capensis) and some indigenous fresh water fishes, the Cape Galaxia (Galaxias zebratus). All those in attendance agreed that the Frog Walk was a resounding success.

   

KRCA would like to extend a thank you to all those in attendance for their participation and assistance in making the Frog Walks such an interesting and educational experience.

   Check our calendar for more exciting events!


 

Volunteers take on Invasive Alien Plants at KRCA

 The Kenilworth  Racecourse Conservation Area (KRCA) hosted a  very spirited group of  volunteers  from Rondebosch Boys High School (RBHS) and Good Hope Studies (GHS) on the 8th and 9th of July 2013 for a community service hack. The hack involved Invasive Alien Plants (IAPs) clearing using dual clearing methods (mechanical and chemical).

Target species were Acacia saligna (Port Jackson), Kiggelaria africana (Wild peach) and Ricinus communis (Castor-oil plant). Tool use introductions were done before the hack, as a variety of tools were used for the activity, these included hand saws, loppers and poppers. Before the hack could start the learners were introduced to the “rules of engagement” to negate any health and safety issues out in the field.

KRCA staff aimed to educate the group about IAPs clearing as well as the reasons behind clearing, at the volunteer’s request. Interpretations were done by Sabelo Memani (student) and they were randomly quizzed about the hack on both days to test if they had understood the relevance of the hack for conservation.

 

The volunteers warmed up to the task and seemed excited about felling trees. Challenges were thrown about and egos inflated as the adrenalin rush hit them, even one of the KRCA team members got involved in the fun as the young lads rampantly tore across the entire half the targeted area like elephants.  The learners shouted, "Timber” at the cracking sound of each Acacia saligna (Port Jackson) tree falling like dominos.  

 

 The KRCA staff members were very impressed with the team effort of the volunteers while felling the trees. The highlight of the hack was the enthusiasm shown by the group, as well as their innovation while felling the invasive trees.

The volunteers easily adapted to the techniques of felling, and made a mammoth contribution to the eradication of invasive alien species within the conservation area. The KRCA would like to extend a word of thanks to our volunteers and we look forward to working with them in the near future.


For more pictures, visit our Facebook page or website: http://www.krca.co.za/gallery-activities


KRCA had a uncontrolled fire ignite on 12 February 2013, with the help of the Ottery and Wynberg Fire Departments, Working on Fire and various City of Cape Town Nature Reserve staff, this was brought under control and monitored overnight and the next day for flare ups. Thank you to all involved for your hard work! We will keep you posted with more information over the next few days.


Toadlets have been on the move all week (since 15 November 2012, over a month sooner than expected), emerging from the breeding sites at Youngsfield! Has been a really amazing opportunity to better understand what goes on there.

Western Leopard Toad, Youngsfield


On 31 August our team went searching for breeding sites of the Western Leopard Toad in the area. We found breeding populations at five of the wetlands on Youngsfield! It was truly spectacular, with significant choruses being emitted from dense reeds.


What an amazing time we had with Survivor Club SA during their holiday programme on 4 and 6 July! Go look at our Facebook page for photos of some of our amazing activities with them!

 


The KRCA chameleon survey was a great success! In total, over two nights (24 and 25 April), we found over 30 adult and baby Cape Dwarf Chameleons. And a further 30 were found in a different part of the reserve during our Spider Walk.

Cape Dwarf Chameleon, Bradypodion pumilum, KRCAChameleon Survey, KRCACape Dwarf Chameleon, Bradypodion pumilium, KRCA


On Thursday, 19 April, the KRCA team were called out to Kenilworth Park to retrieve a beautiful mole snake. It was a wonderful opportunity to practice our snake-handling, spread the word about our conservation work and break some fears. It was later released into the conservation area, much to its relief.

KRCA staff, mole snakeJulian, Kadar Asmal Project, Mole SnakeSabelo, KRCA Student volunteer, Mole Snake


KRCA went live on Facebook on 19 April! See our page for photos and reports of the daily goings on, news of events, as well as to comment and interact with us personally!


On Monday 16 April, KRCA began a search and rescue ahead of the Greenfords Estate development. So far we have caught Vlei Rat and Striped Field Mouse, who have all been happily relocated to the centre of the reserve.

Vlei RatStriped Field Mouse


On 9 April, KRCA hosted a stall at the Gold Circle Family Fun Day. A number of children and their parents visited to see Jemima the Western Leopard Toad and to buy books and plants. In total R630 was raised for Environmental Education equipment!

KRCA exhibit


On 29 March 2012, KRCA successfully burnt just less than 0.5ha of over 100 year old Cape Flats sand fynbos. This was much less than we had hoped to burn this year, but due to prevailing conditions the burn had to be aborted. Next year the remainder of the 15ha block will be burnt.


On 24 March 2012, KRCA and their Friends hosted a phenomenal Easter egg hunt with 90 children from SOS, Tenterden and Ons Plek children's homes. PnP sponsored almost 500 marshmallow-eggs, hot cross buns and juice, and live animals were on display. Check out the report or the photos!

Easter Egg hunt, KRCA, 2012


Check out our most recent report of conservation activities!


During the week of Valentine's Day, we ran a fundraiser for our Environmental Education programmes, selling home-baked biscuits and plants. It was a great success, raising a total of R930-00 to buy new equipment for doing experiments!


As a result of a generous donation from Herzlia Middle School, we were finally able to purchase some much needed field equipment for environmental education!!! YAY! Our wishlist however is still long and if you would like to assist it would be greatly appreciated!

 New equipment for children's activities


Flowers in bloom in November 2011...

Ixia dubia

 


 

 

On Sunday the 24th November, the Friends of KRCA lead a Nature Walk through the conservation area with a group of approximately 20 Adults and a few enthusiastic children. The walk offered a few wonderful botanical surprises which included spotting Ixias, Aristeas, and a few spectacular Erica species. The group was fortunate enough to spot a Mole snake (Pseudaspis cana) crossing the horse track in an attempt to avoid the 20 odd footsteps walking in its' direction.

 

 
Notification of Ecological Burn to be conducted in the Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area (KRCA) March – April 2014

Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area (KRCA), Rosmead Avenue; has received a permit from the City of Cape Town’s Fire Services and Air Pollution Control Department, to conduct an ecological burn of Fynbos.

This permit allows the burning of three different sections, of an approximate total of 15ha of Critically Endangered Cape Flats sand fynbos in KRCA, as part of a prescribed ecological burning programme. The burn will take place on one suitable day between March and April 2014 and will be completed within the course of the day.

The smoke and heat of the fire will enable the long dormant Fynbos seeds to germinate. Fynbos is a fire-driven system and relies on fire to regenerate and maintain species diversity. In 2010, 2011 and 2012 other areas of KRCA were successfully burned and numerous plant species have emerged since.

The vision for KRCA is that its Critically Endangered Cape Flats sand fynbos be conserved in an ecologically viable state with a high diversity of indigenous plants and animals. Following the correct ecological burning regime will help to meet this target and ensure that KRCA is maintained for continued enjoyment by both present and future generations.

For any queries, please contact Air Pollution Control at 021 590 1419 or the KRCA Site Manager at 021 700 1843 (Conservation2k@kenilworthracing.com).