La Motte Hiking Trail
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Where better to start a hike than on a beautiful wine estate, that is not only producing top quality wines, but is also committed to conservation excellence. As an estate, La Motte is committed to the highest conservation and biodiversity standards, and their hiking trail is a wonderful showcase of some of the extraordinary work that they are doing. Wandering … Read More

Fabulous Fynbos Wines: Vondeling
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Yesterday’s delicious Rooibos #FynbosFlavours were paired with the creamy and environmentally friendly Vondeling Chardonnay. As a WWF Conservation Champion Vondeling, and its sister estate Bowwood, are following an impressive and noteworthy environmentally sensitive approach to farming. With 200 ha of their 654 ha farm under conservation, these two estates are certainly leading the way in sustainable wine production. Situated between … Read More

Strikingly beautiful and misunderstood
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Photo Credit: Peter Chadwick To celebrate Reptile Awareness Day we look at one of the most misunderstood animals on the planet, a reptile that strikes fear into the hearts of most mortals. Sharing a top spot with spiders, there are few things, if any, that terrify humans more than snakes. The reality is that most snake encounters occur when snakes … Read More

Dassies – our little energy efficient herbivores
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Dassies (Procavia capensis) are a common sight when hiking in the Table Mountain National Park. More closely related to elephants than the guinea pigs that they superficially resemble, dassies are one of four living species in the order Hyracoidea, and the only living species in the genus Procavia. When seen on Table Mountain dassies are usually lazing around on rocks … Read More

The Blue Crane – South Africa’s vulnerable national icon
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Last week, while driving through the Swartland’s lush wheat fields, I was met with a spectacular sight, at least 20 Blue Cranes were wandering through the green fields. It was enough to cause a minor traffic jam as day tourists pulled over to photograph our national bird. While those of us in the Cape appreciate this beautiful sighting, we don’t … Read More

The Wild Almond – a little piece of South Africa’s history
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As we celebrate Heritage Day it is fitting for us to think back across the centuries to what has shaped our nation. We have a diverse and often volatile history which has seen a number of wars, generally disputes over land between indigenous people, settlers and colonisers, fought on our soil over the centuries; but have you ever wondered how … Read More

The majestic Cape rhinoceros – lost to history
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In this week’s Species In Focus we celebrate World Rhino Day by looking back at the sad history of rhinos in the Cape. Few are aware that the southern black rhinoceros (D. b. bicornis) also known as the Cape rhinoceros, was once abundant in the Cape of Good Hope. It was the largest subspecies, but as no photos exist its … Read More

The “berg” wind – our proudly South African wind
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Hot gusty and dusty winds have buffeted parts of the Western Cape since Saturday. Blowing into Cape Town overnight, we woke up to a very warm early morning temperature and we knew that we were in for some unusual weather. The dust made for a blood red sunrise, which created eerie lighting, and soon the thunder rolled in and a … Read More

The Cape of Storms: Why Newlands is the wettest suburb in South Africa
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Last night Cape Town was buffeted by a cold front bringing torrential rain and gale-force winds. The build up to this cold front, and the subsequent weather, is a classic case study of Cape Town’s winter weather. Firstly a stream of high cirrus clouds rolled in, creating spectacular clouds, but definitely warning us of an impending storm. This was followed … Read More

Major conservation win for Cape Floral Kingdom
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The biodiversity conservation of the Cape Floral Kingdom was given a major boost on 3 July 2015, when UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee approved the expansion of the Cape Floral Region Protected Areas (CFRPA) World Heritage Site. With the approval of this expansion the CFRPA has increased in size from 557,584 ha to 1,094,741 ha, and now includes 163 new land … Read More

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