Category: For Holiday Accomodations

Bird Feeders and the Biosphere

Bird Feeders and the Biosphere

In theory, bird feeders are a pleasant addition to any garden. They attract wild birds and motivate them to stay near the property. Some people would say it makes up for the loss of habitat and food sources due to rural development.
However, bird feeders do have drawbacks.
One important adverse effect of bird feeders is he spread of disease. Bird feeders that are not regularly cleaned and kept dry can fester and provide a breeding ground for bacteria, fungi and Protozoa. Common diseases that can be present include salmonella, trichomoniasis, aspergillosis and avian pox. Many such diseases can affect people as well.
Bird feeders habituate wild birds, motivating them to stay on a property for extended periods of time. Sometimes, large groups can congregate and become a nuisance. There is a greater risk of them injuring themselves by flying into windows (as they have difficulty seeing glass), and they become more vulnerable to predation, either due to household pets such as cats and dogs, or due to wild animals that have become accustomed to their presence. All of this applies to both seed feeders and drinking stations.
Not to mention other animals may also be drawn to these features, including baboons.
A better solution is to plant natural vegetation that they like to use for foraging, such as berry bushes for mousebirds, Ericas for sunbirds, Proteas for sugar birds, seeding grasses for ground birds and so on. The best way to determine what kind of plants to choose is to observe birds foraging and identify the species that that they show interest in.
There are also many local conservation and gardening groups that can advise on indigenous gardens such as Pringle Bay Rewilding and the Kogelberg (Hangklip-Kleinmond) Garden Circle.

Natural plant growth is healthier for wild birds and less conspicuous for uninvited guests. The addition of a bird bath would also be a more natural option if you enjoy watching the birds in your garden.

By KVET BIO – Christoff Heidmann

Holiday Accommodation Resources and Programmes

Holiday Accommodation Resources and Programmes

Status: Not yet started

Our towns and villages of the Kogelberg (Bettys Bay, Mooi Uitsig, Kleinmond, Pringle Bay, Hangklip and Rooiels) are popular holiday destinations for local weekenders and school holiday visitors as well as international visitors.

KVET will be assisting holidaymakers and holiday accommodation providers by equipping them with information about enjoying a responsible stay in the Kogelberg Biosphere local area including:

  • Understanding Waste Management
  • Tips on how to handle encounters with baboons and other wildlife
  • The laws surrounding wildlife interactions (not feeding or harming the wildlife)
  • Being Firewise
  • Controlling Dogs
  • Responsible use of beaches and trails

We Need:

  • Funding – For printing of information packs and flyers. More information on how to make a donation.
  • Volunteers
    • For managing a database of accommodation providers (Guest Houses, B&Bs, Airbnbs etc) and making sure that they are kept stocked with information packs and flyers (especially leading up to the holiday periods).
    • For assisting with setting up holiday education and awareness campaigns including fun activities for children, environmental activities such as talks, walks and workshops and Baboon Information Officers (BIOS) for information days in the village centres. To learn more or sign up to volunteer.
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