Protected species find a safe new home
Because of the planned expansion of the N4 in the Crocodile Gorge east of Nelspruit, where additional passing lanes have become necessary, TRAC recently relocated a large number of protected species along this stretch of road.
Many of the plants were relocated to similar habitat adjacent to the area cleared. This is often the preferred approach because it gives the plants the maximum chance for survival as the soils and microclimate are very similar to the area from which they were removed. Plants were carefully removed by hand using forks, picks, spades and a crowbar. The majority of plants relocated were succulents such as aloes which relocates easily and with a high success rate.
Only one species of conservation concern needed to be relocated, namely the snake vine (Adeniagummifera), which is listed as declining. It is not yet considered threatened, but it is worthy of monitoring because of its popularity in the traditional medicine industry.
Plants that were not relocated were donated to the Lowveld Botanical Gardens where they were received with “thanks and enthusiasm”.