PROTECTING OUR WETLANDS
The Greystone Nature Preserve, a haven for nature lovers, is about to undergo a major transformation.
Nestled in the leafy suburb of Greystone Park, the 7 hectare wetland is administered by the Greystone Nature Preserve Association in conjunction with the City of Harare.
The property consists of two major ecosystems; Savannah Grassland and a Riverine section. This makes it not only ideal for teaching younger generations about the preservation of nature but also as a refuge for the flora and fauna of many species.
The dam was the jewel in the Preserve’s crown. Quiet, welcoming and habitat for birds, mammals, and fish. That all changed, however, on 26 January 2017 at 0200 in the morning. After staying true for more than 60 years, the damn yielded to heavy rainfall, sending rocks and mud downstream.
WORKING WITH THE CITY COUNCIL
After the tragedy, a MoA was signed between the Greystone Nature Preserve Association and the City of Harare in order to safeguard the precious wetland from all forms of human abuse, as is the case with other wetland areas. This agreement also protects any improvements undertaken requiring financial support.
A number of fellow supporters of Wetlands Preservation met the cry for help with consultative and financial support. Kennan Properties was one of the first to assist by donating funds to erect a small bridge over the stream of water from the adjoining vlei, and provided a signboard at the main gate.
REPAIRING THE BREACH
Restoration plans were provided at no charge by Engineer Ken Nicholson.
The actual reparation will be undertaken by Mandebvu Contracting, a family business belonging to Graham and Keegan Taylor, who share our passion for protecting the Wetlands. They provided a very reasonable quotation which comes within the budget.
It is expected that work will begin this month, April 2019.
Additionally, an anonymous lover of the peace and contentment enjoyed in the Preserve donated a sizable amount towards restoring the dam wall.
The removal of exotic and invasive species of trees is an important aspect of the restoration efforts. These will be replaced by indigenous varieties with the help of Cutting Edge, a leading supplier of forestry maintenance and control equipment. Their generous donation of equipment and manpower will g a long way in undertaking this mammoth task.
The Association will then use the donated equipment to avoid future recurrence.
Cutting edge will also sponsor a large sign showing a plan of the preserve, which will also include the logos of sponsors who aided in the process.
Financial assistance is still needed for areas including fencing, signage, maintenance costs and other additions such as owl nesting boxes.
Such sponsorship would be most welcome. Acknowledgment for any assistance, through press articles and on Facebook is guaranteed.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
There’s still a lot to achieve. Organisations such as Birdlife Zimbabwe and the Tree Society, who visit the Nature Preserve regularly are amongst our supporters.
If individuals or companies would like to help in the transformation of Greystone Nature Preserve please contact Roger Fairlie at email@example.com