Friends of Rietvlei
Member of the Wildlife & Environment Society of South Africa Western Cape Region
Description of Rietvlei
Rietvlei is a freshwater wetland located on the floodplain of the Diep River before it drains into Milnerton Lagoon and finally into Table Bay. There is a permanent freshwater lake, shallow seasonally inundated pans, extensive reedbeds, true riverine habitat and a tidal lagoon. With the gradual removal of alien vegetation, tracts of typical Strandveld flora and fauna are flourishing. The springtime wild flowers are a wonderful sight. Approximately 560 hectares in size, its location ensures that both freshwater and coastal birds are regularly seen. The wide diversity of habitats makes this wetland system particularly impressive, in both the variety of species to be found, and the sheer numbers of birds present.
The most rewarding viewing seasons are spring and summer when large numbers of migrant waders are present. The number of waterbird species stands at 102, of which 70 are regularly present. Over 10 000 individual birds have been counted during waterbird censuses. The total species count stands at over 190.
Rietvlei Wetland lies between the suburbs of Milnerton and Table View and is only 15 minutes drive from central Cape Town. There is sufficient suitable parking, toilet facilities, a picnic area, barbecue facilities and a network of pathways around the wetland and up to the bird hide. The hide can seat about 20 people and is perfectly positioned for the best viewing of small migrant waders.
The dunes along the seaside of the reserve are a good vantage point for whale-watching (winter) and dolphin sightings.
At present, Rietvlei is a P.N.E. (Protected Natural Environment), and is a section of the Table Bay Nature Reserve. Future plans include having it declared a Nature Reserve under the Protected Areas Act.
There are spectacular views across the bay to Table Mountain, making Rietvlei a photographer's paradise.
Enquiries about recreational activities in the Table Bay Nature Reserve can be obtained from the office at Rietvlei during office hours or email:
Rietvlei Section is open daily from 7.30am to 5pm except on a few Closed Days per year. For details of Closed Days please contact the office on 021 444 0315.
See Tariffs page for entrance fees, etc.
Office: 021 444 0315
Read more about the Table Bay Nature Reserve on Wikipedia
Read more about Rietvlei Section of the Table Bay Nature Reserve on Wikipedia
Disclaimer: The Friends of Rietvlei has placed this information here as a public service, but is not responsible for its correctness. The City could introduce changes which may not be reflected on this page; if you want to make sure please contact the Rietvlei Wetland Reserve (telephone and email above).
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