LAST OF 8 ELAND RELEASED AT BLAAUBERG GAME RESERVE

If you are planning a trip to a game reserve soon, then consider a visit to Blaauberg Nature Reserve along the West Coast, as it now boasts of a wide range of free-roaming game including eight eland species recently relocated to the area.

Apart from the vierity of game to be viewed, visitors will also be able to indulge in an aray of different plant species on offer.

In the statement issued last week by the City of Cape Town, the recent release of the last eland to the reserve – on Wednesday 8 March – was  describe as a “momentous occasion”.

Brett Herron Mayco member for transport and urban development, said the eland, or Taurotragus oryx  as it is also known, was relocated from Koeberg Nature Reserve.

“The other seven eland were introduced to the Blaauberg Nature Reserve in December last year and in February this year.

“The animals were donated by Koeberg Nature Reserve as part of their management of eland population in that reserve. In September 2016 we also released five red hartebeest in the Blaauberg Nature Reserve that were obtained from private game owners,” Herron said.

He said the release of the animals is part of the reserve’s game introduction management plan that will serve to enhance management of the vegetation cover and other ecological process. Apart from the red hartebeest and eland, grey rhebok are also earmarked for reintroduction.

“We plan to release more of the designated species depending on the numbers that can be allowed,” Herron said.

One eland has been collard for vegetation and habitat use monitoring within the reserve.

Suzette Little, Mayco member (North) said monitoring the species is critical, as they need to ensure that the reintroduced animals do not impact negatively on the reserve’s critically endangered vegetation types.

The reserve is approximately 2000 hectares in size.

“It has a rich mosaic of natural, cultural and historic elements, and being so close to Cape Town, the reserve has potential to become an open air classroom that is easily accessible,” said little.

Excerpts – Tyger-Burger

IMAGE: Photo of Lake Eland Game Reserve is courtesy of TripAdvisor

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