Wetlands, Catchments and Rivers 31 March – 2 April 2023

Water…. The life force for all living organisms!

This short but powerful opening statement was the start of a fascinating weekend. This very insightful weekend spent in the beautiful Kgaswane Nature Reserve, had us experiencing a freshly squeezed, great tasting sample of this incredible resource, almost from the point of origin.

It was a welcome repose not to have our Friday evening spooked by the dreaded test and all took advantage of the relaxed atmosphere around the campfire. Kgaswane proves to be so special and diverse an ecosystem that it was a delight to experience the practical side of the wetlands, rivers and catchments module here. Learning about the importance of water, where it comes from and what lives in it, highlighted how minuscule we as perceived apex predators are in this wonderful universe we occupy.

Weekend Activities

The group was amazed at the many ways in which rivers and all water could be influenced by us, as well as influence how we live. We were awestruck being introduced to the dynamics of Wetland ecosystems as the masters of water management. As diverse as being from a stream-source setting like high up in the Drakensberg, wetlands occur right through inland basins, plains, streambanks – and ending with estuaries and marine settings. A little friendly competition to aid in the understanding of the function of wetlands, saw Team Grasslands taking a win for the best design and the purest water.

On Saturday, on a very beautiful, warm afternoon, we drove to Mushroom Rock. This is an area of geological wonder. How is it possible for such huge boulders to balance on the smaller ones below! The group wondered around the quartz floor with a drink in hand and saluted the end of the day. The dawning of the day has been seen in this area for many thousands of years.

Mushroom Rock Kgaswane

Special thanks to our course presenters for the weekend: Peter, Ulrich and André

ED’s Note: Thanks to the Wetlands team for this feedback, looks like lots of fun and learning was had by all.