Saturday, 17 June 2017

Albertina Sisulu Orchid

Today the day in-between 2 busy function days of my 50th, a day of rest between the family braai and tomorrows photowalk incorporating a cheese and wine sundowner.

Resting but no ways putting my feet up as I had to get to a Proteadal Conservation Association’s talk at Featherbrook Estate about the Albertina Sisulu Orchid. This orchid is listed as Critically Endangered and the next step is Possibly Extinct. It was first discovered in 1918 but was only named in 1955 as the Brachycorythis conica ssp. Transvaalensis but was last seen the following year. In 2007 a group was rediscovered in Krugersdorp section of the Gold Reef Mountain Ridge. The kloof that runs past my house is part of this ridge system and about 3km south of where the orchids where found.

With just over 100 left, this last know viable population of orchid species is the reason for me being here at this talk. The conditions are the same as the Protea forested veld outside my home and I am hoping that we can find another population of these orchids here.

Interesting facts about the Gold Reef Mountain Ridge which includes the kloof is that there are 700 plant species, 200 animal species, and 22 species of birds of prey, in this area and the bonus is it is all outside my home, not that I have seen anywhere close to 1% of them.

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