The Pine Tree Project

10 Jan 2016 21:55 - 11 Jan 2016 07:24 #66391 by Papa Dragon
Replied by Papa Dragon on topic The Pine Tree Project
A successful working hike, attended by FlatDoggy (Mark Robertson, Conservation Manager at EKZNW Monk's Cowl), JulieMK, and myself. Total bag was 9 mature trees either ringbarked or felled, and 1 baby tree.

There is quite a serious problem in the Vaalribbokkop/Hospitalspruit area, so we also identified and assessed a fair number of sites for future work.


JulieMK about to attack a difficult pine


In progress


Job well done!!





The pic doesnt show it properly, this tree was right on the edge of a drop of about 3m over a stream, required some gymnastic skills to get it done!



Encouraging that this tree, which was ringbarked by Night Hawk Bravo in August, is showing signs of dying, as is another one like it.

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Last edit: 11 Jan 2016 07:24 by Smurfatefrog. Reason: Rotated pics
The following user(s) said Thank You: intrepid, diverian, ghaznavid, Smurfatefrog, AndrewP, supertramp, andrew r, saros

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11 Jan 2016 07:10 #66393 by Coeta
Replied by Coeta on topic The Pine Tree Project
Just a side interest question here, where do these trees come from originally?
These things don't just materialise from nowhere.
Did somebody plant some by design some time back?

All it takes is just one tree and a moderate berg down wind to spread cone seeds far and wide. (Overstating the obvious I guess.)

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11 Jan 2016 08:28 #66394 by andrew r
Replied by andrew r on topic The Pine Tree Project
Brief description by tiska about the origin of the pines here

make a difference. today.
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11 Jan 2016 08:31 #66395 by Stijn
Replied by Stijn on topic The Pine Tree Project
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13 Jan 2016 11:12 #66442 by Papa Dragon
Replied by Papa Dragon on topic The Pine Tree Project
Diverian, is the route up river from the road bridge, and then across to Marble Baths clear, or is it worth carrying the panga and bowsaw?
Cheers
Papa D

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13 Jan 2016 11:31 #66444 by Papa Dragon
Replied by Papa Dragon on topic The Pine Tree Project

Diverian, is the route up river from the road bridge, and then across to Marble Baths clear, or is it worth carrying the panga and bowsaw?
Cheers
Papa D

Amend that to LIC please, Marble Baths is already booked.....

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15 Jan 2016 18:39 #66500 by Papa Dragon
Replied by Papa Dragon on topic The Pine Tree Project
Our little group have decided to "unofficially adopt" the Hospitaalspruit catchment basin, Vaalribbokkop and cave, to Stable Cave area in terms of pine tree work. This is with the approval and support of the Conservation Manager of Monk's Cowl.

We have loosely committed to a pine tree working hike every second month, our next one will be in March. Let me know if anyone is interested.
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15 Jan 2016 22:15 - 15 Jan 2016 22:16 #66501 by intrepid
Replied by intrepid on topic The Pine Tree Project
This is really excellent news guys, you have my full support in that. We started chewing on the idea of how to develop this kind of thing with the previous CM at Monk's Cowl and its great to see your little group take that ownership. The scope of the pine tree project alone (never mind alien invasives in general) is well beyond the efforts of our "official" VE efforts thus far, even in conjunction with resources from Working For Water and the Working On Fire teams. The good news is that the battle against pine can definitely be won.

There is a draft version of a map in circulation defining VE's "official" areas in the Monks Cowl/Culfargie area. I will get it finalised in order to publish it here and would like to include your work area on it too. I use inverted commas for official to convey that while we are all VE members, the VE trips will continue to function as they have, alongside all other teams, and that we encourage the formation of groups such as yours, who have their own sense of ownership for certain areas.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.
Last edit: 15 Jan 2016 22:16 by intrepid.
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15 Jan 2016 22:59 #66506 by Papa Dragon
Replied by Papa Dragon on topic The Pine Tree Project
Thanks for the support Chris. I suggested this after our working hike this weekend, and it was enthusiastically agreed to by Mark and Julie, thanks guys. My son will also hopefully be joining in as part of the core.

We had an enjoyable hike this weekend, not all work, but the work part is very rewarding. Like I said in an earlier post, great to see trees that we had worked on in August definitely on the way out.

So, as it stands now there is me, then Julie, founder member and official Pine Tree Spotter (she can see then from miles away), Mark who is the Conservation Manager from Monk's Cowl and will be joining in as often as he can, and my son.

If anyone else feels inclined to join, please let me know. Work is at your own pace and no pressure, next trip hopefully early March, and every second month after that. I really feel that with this effort we can make a real difference in this area, with 1 2-man trip that was not really a dedicated work trip, and another with 3 of us, there's already 11 mature pines on their way out, or cut down.

Thanks for listening
Papa D
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16 Jan 2016 14:48 #66510 by Papa Dragon
Replied by Papa Dragon on topic The Pine Tree Project
Because the pics in my post above make it look like Julie did all the work on last weekend's hike, here's a pic to prove that Mark and I also worked.
:laugh: :laugh:

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