Paardevlei can have its original name back now

29 October 2013

Flaminke Valey (now known as Paardevlei) circa 1700s

Flaminke Valey (centre left. now known as Paardevlei) circa 1700s

Paardevlei before rehabilitation (Photo: Bill Harding)

Paardevlei before rehabilitation (Photo: Bill Harding)

Paardevlei, a shallow and much-modified vlei south of Somerset West, used to be known as Flamingo Vlei.  OK, this was back in the 1700s – the map above shows it as Flaminke Valey [center left], with the then much larger Zeekoe Valey (at Sitari, north of Maccassar) just to the north.

The wetland at Sitari (former Vogelsang Farm), now known as Klein Zeekoevlei, is to be recreated over its original footprint.

Paardevlei pre-rehabilitation - with a spectacular blue-green algal bloom (Photo: Bill Harding)

Paardevlei pre-rehabilitation – with a spectacular blue-green algal bloom
(Photo: Bill Harding)

Paardevlei used to be a nutrient-enriched cesspool of note until it was rehabilitated under the direction of DH Environmental Consulting – a composite process involving fish removal, draining and sediment removal and the formulation of a future plan for the restored vlei (see link here).  DH Environmental has also prepared the rehabilitation plan for Sitari’s Zeekoevlei (see link here) and designed and created the Intaka Island wetland at Century City near Cape Town.  But now, the Paardevlei flamingos are BACK!

We're back guys!  (Photo: Bill Harding)

We’re back guys! (Photo: Bill Harding)

Flamingos have been a common feature of Paardevlei during recent weeks, along with a wide variety of other waterbirds.

Flypast (Photo: Bill Harding)

Flypast (Photo: Bill Harding)

Sadly, though, the algal blooms appear to be back as well, something the current management team should give some thought to!

Cyanobacterial bloom in the restored Paardevlei (Photo: Bill Harding)

Cyanobacterial bloom in the restored Paardevlei (Photo: Bill Harding)

 

Damn flamingoes get all the glory!  If only I were bigger! (Photo: Bill Harding)

Damn flamingos get all the glory! If only I were bigger! (Photo: Bill Harding)

(Mark Bezencon of Heartland Properties is thanked for permission to visit the vlei)

 

 

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