Families invited to enjoy birdlife

2018-10-09 06:01
Children participating in the Birdathon in 2017.

Children participating in the Birdathon in 2017.

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Communities surrounding the False Bay Nature Reserve (FBNR) are invited to enjoy a family day in the outdoors celebrating some of Cape Town’s best wetlands and the diverse birdlife they support on Saturday 20 October.

This will be an opportunity for residents to discover a nature reserve right on their doorstep. The invitation is extended by the City of Cape Town for participants to take part in a 4km, 5km or 6km walk through the Strandfontein birding section of the False Bay Nature Reserve, which includes a fun environmental quiz relating to the area.

The FBNR is regarded as the most significant natural asset in the Cape Flats district, and in 2015 it was declared a Ramsar Site, which is a wetland of international importance.

The City is located in a global biodiversity hotspot and the False Bay Nature Reserve is one of the City’s 16 protected areas.

“Our False Bay Nature Reserve is an important multipurpose open space that should be enjoyed by all our residents. The Birdathon offers families a cost-effective outing where they will be able to learn about the value of our nature reserve through fun and interactive activities. We hope that, through this event, we will be able to encourage greater use of the area and create awareness about the importance of this park and the birds, animals and plants that it supports,” says Brett Herron, Mayco member for transport and urban development in the City.

“Protecting our natural resources is a team effort. The City therefore works with our partners such as the Cape Town Environmental Education Trust (CTEET), Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) and Cape Brewing Company (CBC) to actively conserve these important areas. We also encourage our communities to support our conservation efforts so that together we can protect our environment for generations to come,” he says.

The FBNR Birdathon, Fun Walk and Festival aims to bring people of all ages together to introduce them to the area and its incredible natural resources by letting them experience it in a fun way, while learning about its importance.

“In extending the conservation message to the greater Cape Town community, we hope to broaden awareness of the False Bay Nature Reserve, and in turn to encourage our youth to become custodians of their natural heritage,” says Dr Anthony Roberts, CEO of CTEET.

Registration will take place from 07:30 to 09:30 at the picnic area on the eastern shore of Zeekoevlei. Participants in the fun walk will be able to start walking any time from 08:00 to 09:30. There will also be a lucky draw with prizes on offer at the end of the walk.

The festival, which will take place on the banks of the eastern shore of Zeekoevlei, will include interactive activities such as a live bird display by the Eagle Encounters Raptor Rehabilitation Centre, a reptile show and display, Jungle Theatre, as well as other exhibitions and activities such as dragon boating. Melomed, a key sponsor of the event, will provide a facility for basic health screening and information for adults.

The festival will start at 09:00 at the Zeekoevlei eastern shore picnic area. The venue will be signposted from the access point off Strandfontein Road.

Entry to the event is R5 per person, up to a maximum of R20 per family. All profits will go towards conservation activities at the site.

For more information about the event, contact Helen Whelan via email at events@cteet.co.za or visit the event on Facebook.

To get to the False Bay Nature Reserve, turn into Dollarbird Road from Strandfontein Road (M17).

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