False Bay Nature Reserve hosts annual Birdathon – a family fun walk and festival

Residents will have the opportunity to discover nature on their doorstep with the annual Birdathon. The City of Cape Town, in partnership with BirdLife South Africa and the Cape Bird Club, will host a festival and family fun walk on Saturday 28 March 2015 at the False Bay Nature Reserve. Read more below:

The City of Cape Town’s Environmental Resource Management Department and its partners invite all residents, especially the communities surrounding the False Bay Nature Reserve (FBNR), to enjoy a family day outdoors, celebrating some of the city’s best wetlands and the diverse birdlife.

This will be an opportunity for residents to discover a nature reserve right on their doorstep.

The FBNR is regarded as the most significant natural asset in the Cape Flats District, and has recently been declared a Ramsar Site – a wetland of international importance.

‘The False Bay Nature Reserve is a multipurpose, inclusive open space, which can be enjoyed by families across the city. Through this event, the City and its partners hope to encourage greater use of the area and to create awareness about the importance of this park and the birds, animals and plants that it supports, as well as the role this space plays in contributing to a sustainable environment.

‘Protecting our natural resources is a team effort, therefore the City, working together with partners such as BirdLife South Africa and the Cape Bird Club, actively conserves this asset as part of our commitment to being a caring, responsible city. Furthermore, we ask communities to support our conservation efforts, and one such way is by attending the Birdathon to celebrate the city’s best wetlands and the diverse birdlife on our doorstep,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Energy, Environmental and Spatial Planning, Councillor Johan van der Merwe.
The FBNR Birdathon: Fun Walk and Festival aims to bring people together to introduce them to the area and its incredible natural resources by letting them experience it in a fun way, while learning about the project’s importance to the City of Cape Town.

Participants can take part in a 4 km, 5 km or 6 km walk through the Strandfontein Birding Area of the False Bay Nature Reserve, which includes a fun environmental quiz relating to the area. There will also be a lucky draw with prizes on offer at the end of the walk.

The first 750 participants who register early and complete the routes will receive a free lunch courtesy of John Dory’s, which they can enjoy after the walk, while picnicking on the banks of the Zeekoevlei at the newly constructed picnic and braai facilities.

Other interactive activities include a live bird display by the Eagle Encounters Raptor Rehabilitation Centre, a reptile show and display, a fire safety demonstration, dragon boating, and other exhibitions and demonstrations.

Melomed, a new key sponsor of the event, will also be providing a facility for basic health screening and information for adults.

Entry for the event is R5 per person (a maximum of R20 per family). All profits will go towards conservation activities at the site. Registration will take place on Saturday 28 March 2015 from 07:30 to 09:30 at the picnic area on the eastern shore of Zeekoevlei.

Participants in the fun walk can start walking anytime from 08:00 to 09:30. The festival component will commence from 09:00 at the Zeekoevlei eastern shore picnic area. The venue will be signposted from the access point off Strandfontein Road.

Directions:
From the south: Strandfontein Road can be reached via Baden Powell Drive (R310).
From the north: Strandfontein Road can be reached via Jan Smuts Drive or Lansdowne Road.
To get to the False Bay Nature Reserve, turn into Zeekoevlei Road from Strandfontein Road (M17).

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