Zandvlei Trust

ZANDVLEI  ACTION COMMITTEE

Minutes of the quarterly committee meeting held at the Zandvlei Imperial Yacht Club on Wednesday,
03 June 2009 at 14:30.

1. Opening and welcome

The Chairperson (Cassy Sheasby) welcomed all members that were present and opened the meeting. People around the table introduced themselves and who they were representing. An attendance register was passed around. Apologies of members not present were announced. The last meeting was in September 2008, almost a year ago so many issues to debate

Attendance Register

C Sheasby
R Paulse
M Thompson
L Harrison
M Gamildien
C Giljam
J Sher
D Qually
R MacLean
V Wilson

Apologies

P Joubert
G Lawson
C Haskins
B Thomson

1. Minutes of the previous meeting
The minutes of the previous meeting were accepted.

2. Water levels
MT handed over the estuary opening scheduled dates which had already taken place. TP to forward CS the upcoming scheduled openings. CS to forward to all members on the mailing list. It was 
decided that the yachting and canoe events should be scheduled around the opening and closing of the estuary mouth. Action TP / CS

3. Water Quality
Water quality results for April and May were read out by CS. Zandvlei centre 290 E coli per 100ml. Zandvlei south 160 E coli per 100ml. Royal Road bridge 1000 E coli per 100ml. Westlake Wetlands 5000 E coli per 100ml. Water quality results were discussed and LH conveyed that these need to be viewed as long term trends to show environmental pollution such as sewerage spills. Graphs of the water quality trends over the last few months were sent around. Additional samples taken by Reserve staff showed high E coli in the Retreat Industrial area (18000) and must be monitored continuously to see if there is a continuously bad result which could become a problem. A carwash in Stellenbosch was discussed as an example of run off directly entering the river systems. CG suggested that to promote environmental awareness, we paint murals on the pavements to educate public on where the water (and litter) goes. Roads and Stormwater departments would have to be consulted with regards to this and permission granted. CS asked that anyone seeing people cleaning paint brushes or dumping any unknown liquid or material into a stormwater system in the area to contact her immediately. There were a few small sewerage overflows in the past months which were reported to BT. Affected water was treated with bioagent immediately by Reserve staff and Zandvlei received some bioagent re-imbursements from Brian Tompson’s department. There was a request that user groups are informed by way of signage erected around the vlei when there are sewerage events. This was discussed and once BT is contacted that LH and the Environmental Health Dept be contacted as well as the representatives of the user groups. There are also problems with the pump stations and sometimes the back up generators do not kick in. BT to provide info on these pump stations and how they work. It was requested that a sticker with emergency contact number be placed on each of the pump stations so that members of the public can report sewerage spills due to pump station failure.

  • Roads and Stormwater:   0860 10 30 54

  • Illegal dumping:   0860 10 30 89

  • Land Invasion/squatter control:   080 022 5669

  • Disaster Risk Management:   021 597 5000 (all hours)

  • Cable theft:   080 022 2771

Salinity: MT would like to have a list of the names of the members who collect the salinity readings. PJ and Sharon McCullum, not sure if Tim Hoffman still collects, did not receive any results for 2009 for yacht club area. Importance of getting the salinities up and keeping them high was stressed.
The opening and closing of the mouth is a key operation ensuring the functioning of the ecosystem. It was decided that the opening and closing schedule must be sent around by Talcott Persent and the user groups must arrange their activities around this, not the other way around. These activities should then be sent around to everyone on mailing list. Action CS.

4. Pondweed
The Muizenberg Parks Dept were did not send a representative to the meeting and it was requested that it be compulsory for a representative to attend the future ZAC meetings to deal with issues around the cutting of pondweed and maintenance of Parks areas. CS to inform Parks well in advance of the next meeting. R MacL reported that the weed is not being cut, that it isn’t too bad in the canals but in the main water body is very thick. The full extent of the cut weed is not collected with the cutter, if there are storm conditions, the weed collects in the blind ending canals and decomposes. This is creating thick anaerobic sludge in the canals that needs to be cleared. RMacL gets very little response from City of Cape Town with regards to his complaints. CS explained that Eugene Rayners has now taken over from Ricardo de la Cruz and will need to be taken around and shown where the problem areas are. Action CS.

5. Litter traps
One litter net was broken with the high flood levels, but was fixed. A litter cleanup of Wildwood Island was undertaken by Reserve staff, about 30 tyres and 2 vehicle loads of litter were removed and taken to the landfill site. There is still a large overflow of litter into Zandvlei even with the metal litter trap and three litter nets. The issue around pushing the rehabilitation phase 2 of Langevlei was discussed and should be prioritized in City’s budgets. CG brought up the issue around health and safety of school children doing litter cleanups and it not being safe for them to undertake this. Also liability issues for City of Cape Town.

6. Park Island
The litter collected on Park Island is not picked up by Solid Waste or Parks. It is left in places that are easily accessible. CS to follow up with Eugene Rayners. Alien vegetation that has been cut down has also been left at the entrance to Park Island and not removed. When the gate was open, a truck dumped a large amount of tyres on Park Island. CS to follow up with Eugene Rayners if he knows if this was Parks or another department. Dogs running free on Park Island briefly discussed. CG reported that an agreement was reached originally that dogs would be allowed free reign on the Island. CS asked for documentation. CS to follow up with Julia Wood and Clifford Dorse about the designation. CG asked that stakeholders be involved in the decision making process to prevent public outcry. According to the Parks By law, all public open spaces unless otherwise signboarded by City of Cape Town are classified as dogs on leashes. There are options about zonation of certain other areas for free running of dogs.

 7. Tube worms
Nothing new to report.

8. Mallards
The sedative has been ordered. A rollout of the mallard eradication strategy will have to be finalised with Louise Stafford and then removal efforts can start.

9. Fish
CG invited a representative of the fishing community to attend the meetings to give feedback, however he was unavailable. DQ asked for update on the fishing and boating by law, amendments required have been documented, however the process will take a long time. CS needs to follow up with Legal Dept. Action CS

10. Invasive Waterweed
Hyacinth that is removed should be pulled onto a slipway and removed and not left on site to decompose as this replenishes the nutrient cycle which we don’t want. The hyacinth cannot be picked up by the weed cutter as it breaks the conveyer belt. The same design as the barge at Zeekoevlei should be recreated at Zandvlei for hyacinth removal.

11. Signage
CS reported R10 000 donated to the Nature Care Fund by Sharon McCullum’s sister Lyn for information signage. this will be generic signage for the entire of GZENR with the new boundary, basic 
information on the reserve and contact details. This will have to go through City of Cape Town’s Corporate Communications branch and be branded before it goes up. CG requested that the public 
be allowed to include their creative input into the signage. More by law signage needs to be erected in the new financial year.

12. Other business
a. Boardsail Inn
The shaping of the banks took place and plants for rehabilitation are still at the Zandvlei nursery. Nothing new from Amenities dept on follow up on removal of alien vegetation and general clean up of area. CS to find out about taking over the management of this section from Amenities. Action CS

b. Leopard toads
Leopard Toad breeding season approaching. Mark Day will be co-ordinating for all areas again this year. He is looking for help from students and interns as well as volunteers. A Leopard Toad pamphlet is in the process of being produced and everything has to go through the Leopard Toad Steering Committee. Mark Day is looking into temporary speed bumps. All members are urged to be vigilant for toads on the roads and to report calling or sightings to Mark Day on volfire@sanparks.org.za

c. Mowing of areas
No mow zones were mapped and sent to Parks, also on the biodiversity database for reference. This year Mark Arendse of Zandvlei had to speak to Parks again about mowing plants at the mouth and around the Promenade Road management block. CS explained that the mowing is often contracted out to new contractors and they are not shown the no-mow areas by the Parks Dept prior to commencement of work. CS to forward the maps to Eugene Rayners and Leon Swartz again. CS also suggested bollards be erected along the rehabilitated edges to prevent tractors from reaching plants. CS. Action  CS

d. False Bay Station Flats
The ROD said holes in walls every 10m for animal movement, not been taken into account by developer. CS following up on this with Joy Garman and ECO Kate Snaddon. Action  CS

13. Closure and date of next meeting
The next meeting scheduled for 2nd September 2009 at 14:00 at the Yacht Club. JS to check availability and access with club commodore Lance Dixon as the new fence will prevent access to general public. Action JS

                                                                                                                                           

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