On Saturday the 20th January 2018, a group of very enthusiast young students volunteered to assist the Friends of Faerie Glen Nature Reserve (FFGNR) with our very first alien invasive plant hack of the New Year. As many would know by now, Faerie Glen Nature Reserve, which creates such pleasure for many of us nature lovers, is severely threatened by many different invasive species. If it were not for the diligent work members of the FFGNR, who regularly dedicate their time to clearing and managing these invasives, we would not have this unique nature area to enjoy with our friends, family, and even our dogs.
A large group of young teenagers from Woodhill High School under the able leadership and encouragement of their biology teacher, Cathy Marneweck, and a couple of Hatfield Christian School girls dedicated Saturday morning to making a difference in their local community. The groups were split into two, with one group under Jenny Bester’s (member of FFGNR) able leadership, focussing on removing the cat’s claw creeper near the bird hide, which smothers our large indigenous trees by starving them of light.
The other larger group, focussed on removing the highly invasive Lantana camara shrub from one of the pathways up to the koppie, under Edwin and Vincent van de Wiel’s (members of FFGNR) leadership. In both groups, the students learned quite a bit about these invasives and how to effectively control them.
They attacked their job with enthusiasm and much laughter and gaiety, and really made a huge difference. Sweaty and hot, but with a great sense of achievement, the youngsters cleared a large area of these invasives.
It was wonderful to see our youth really being willing to make a difference in our community and we applaud their selfless efforts and really hope to see them again in future when we have another hack.
How about some other schools taking up the challenge??