greater Zandvlei Estuary Nature Reserve
Mr May's fishing permit, Nature looking after people.
In June this year, a Fisheries Resource Management student, Sebastian Osborne from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, extended a helping hand to a local unemployed citizen of the Zandvlei area. Sebastian is an experiential learning student completing his National Diploma in Fisheries Resource Management, currently employed as a student conservation officer at the Greater Zandvlei Estuary Nature Reserve. As part of his daily work, he undertakes fishing permit inspections at the estuary and ensures that the fisherman stick to bag limits and the by laws of the Municipality.
Sebatian handing over the permit to Mr May.
Mr May who lives in Lavender Hill is a regular fisherman at Greater Zandvlei Estuary Nature Reserve. He is unemployed and relies on fishing to eat each day. Due to his lack of income he could not afford a fishing permit and expressed this to Sebastian during one of his permit inspections. Sebastian came up with a plan to solve this problem that would benefit both the Nature Reserve and Mr May. He proposed that Mr May come and help the Nature Reserve staff for a day clearing invasive alien plant species and in return the Nature Reserve would find money to pay for the annual fishing permit from the Post Office for Mr May.
Mr May agreed, came and helped clear invasive plants and on 11 June 2008 a valid angling permit was handed over to him from the Nature Reserve. This would ensure that he would be able to legally fish at Zandvlei for a year after which he could come back and apply to receive a new one for a days labour. The fishing regulations, bag limits and expectations on him to keep the permit on him while fishing were explained and given to him in a brochure.
The angling license was purchased using money from the Nature Care Fund. The Nature Care Fund was started a year ago by the staff of the City of Cape Town Nature Reserves and is a non
profit fund that the Nature Reserve Managers and members of the public donate money to for worthy causes such as this. We are hoping that in future many such projects will be started to aid the environmental awareness of the local communities and to provide job opportunities.
The Greater Zandvlei Estuary Nature Reserve was expanded from 22ha to 200ha and proclaimed in October 2006. It is the last remaining estuary on the False Bay Coastline, is a fish nursery and hatchery for 23 indigenous fish species including the Endangered White Steenbras.