Friends of Rietvlei
Newsletter October 2003
EVENING TALK "BIRD CALLS"
The next evening talk will be by Kirsten Louw, one of our members, who is currently studying for a Masters Degree in Ornithology. Kirsten will discuss birdcalls and the reasons why and how birds sing. We really look forward to seeing our members at this meeting. Please invite your friends to join us.
Date: Thursday 23rd October
Venue: Milnerton Aquatic Clubhouse, off Pentz Drive, Table View
Time: 7.30 for 8p.m
Contact: Margaret on 557-4990
PLEASE DIARISE THURSDAY 20 NOVEMBER FOR OUR NEXT EVENING GET-TOGETHER. YOU MUST BE THERE!!!
 
ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION CENTRE
Hopefully quite a number of our members have been down to the bird hide recently to see the extensive birdlife Rietvlei has to offer. On your way to the hide you should have seen our "cabin" going up. Work commenced at the end of September. Koos Retief and the Rietvlei Nature Conservation Students set up an Environmental Management Plan for the contractors to follow whilst working at Rietvlei. The contractors were also given a briefing on the environmental sensitivity of the site and the working area was demarcated. Koos and the students have been undertaking regular visits to the site to ensure that the builders have been complying with the plan. The builders have been doing an excellent job and the site has been kept clean and tidy.
The building operations are due to be completed by the end of October and as of writing this in mid October the roof is on, the floors are being completed, internal panelling has been going in and it is really starting to look like a home for Friends of Rietvlei and environmental education. DETAILS OF THE OPENING WILL BE SENT TO YOU NEXT MONTH.
REQUEST: Friends of Rietvlei has a huge amount of material gathered during our existence. We would like to produce some posters/displays for the centre and we need some volunteers to help with this. Please email us or phone Margaret on 557 4990 or Pat on 557 3748 with your offer to help. WE NEED YOU!!!
 
NEW MEMBERS
We are happy to welcome the First Milnerton Sea Cubs, under the leadership of their Akela, Shelley Donaldson, as new members. The children have paid a few visits to Rietvlei and the bird hide and have now decided to become more involved by tackling a project. The Rietvlei NC students have been assisting with project ideas and will be assisting the cubs.
PLEASE ENCOURAGE YOUR FRIENDS, NEIGHBOURS, COLLEAGUES TO BECOME MEMBERS - GET A MEMBERSHIP FORM BY EMAILING OR PHONING MARGARET ON 557 4990. THERE IS STRENGTH IN NUMBERS!!
 
RAINFALL UPDATE
Total Rainfall for Rietvlei (mm) for 2000-2003
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2003
Century City
January - 16 57.9 3.5 5
February - 2 10 6 19
March - 0 10.1 32.2 63
April 5+ 18.9 29.9 10.9 22
May 26.1 48.7 38.6 22.2 40
June 51.6 36.4 62.8 13.1 39
July 46.1 175.7 69.5 19.5 59
August 24.3 108.7 66.9 - 124
September 49.3+ 61.5+ 19.5 - 107
October 5.3 31.2 33.7 - 33.7
November 8.8 22.5 13.2 - 13.2
December 2.5 10.5 20.1 - 20.1
Total: 219+ 532.1+ 432.2 -  
Just for interest, please see that the last column gives the figures for rainfall measured at Century City (and therefore for Blouvlei/Intaka Island) They seem to get a consistently higher rainfall than Rietvlei!!
 
SNIPPETS
MILNERTON LAGOON MOUTH: For those of you who drive to town occasionally or regularly you will see some changes happening there. Nelis Visagie has been attending the Environmental Liaison Committee (ELC) meetings for this project, which originally commenced in 1996. Spinnakers is a block of apartments at the southern end that has had an impact on the dune system. This development has not had a good record of environmental compliance and the September audit report by the Environmental Control Officer highlighted NINE areas of non-compliance. The Lagoongate development commenced in early October and they have had to be chased to ensure they adhere to the Environmental Management Plan. This development will overlook the Milnerton Lagoon and consists of hotel and apartments.
ROYAL ASCOT: Margaret Macivor is the FofR representative on this ELC. Of crucial importance now is ensuring the apartments known as Sandown Crescent do not impact the adjacent conservation areas. These apartments are being built on a portion of the old horse race track following the crescent shape. The new stormwater ponds, at the corner of Racecourse/R27 roads, are shaped and the indigenous vegetation is starting to grow. The stormwater will flow from these ponds to Rietvlei. These ponds should help to slow down and clean up the water before Rietvlei has to "handle" it.
This newsletter comes to you with the kind assistance of Caltex.
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