Remove invasive species from around the Lonehill Dam

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The LRA is looking for volunteers to help clear invasive species at the Lonehill Dam on 27 January.

Looking for a way to care for the environment? Volunteers are needed to help clear away invasive species from around Lonehill Dam on 27 January.

The main aim of the clean-up is to remove as much of the Kariba and milfoil weeds from the dam as possible. Both of these are category 1B invasive species, meaning that they have a big impact on South African ecosystems.

“The Lonehill Dam does not have a natural water source and is only fed by stormwater,” explained Marykey Blewett, estate manager for the Lonehill Residents Association (LRA).

“Stormwater run-off is contaminated and generally nutrient-rich. The lack of circulation combined with nutrient-rich water, as well as decreased water depth (due to the silting up of the dam) promotes the growth of the two main invasive weeds at the dam. In favourable conditions, these weeds naturally multiply every few days.”

Although the solution to this problem is multi-faceted, one step being taken is a volunteer clean-up of the weeds on 27 January. Volunteers are invited to meet at the dam at 8.30am and are encouraged to bring rakes (or any other items that can be used to scoop weeds out of the water), gumboots, a hat, sunblock and a bottle of water. “People who would like to help on the day can just come and join the action,” said Blewett.

“Those who cannot help on the day but who would like to be involved and/or help on a different occasion, or even on a more permanent or regular basis can contact the LRA.

“What we really need are some boats so that people can get onto the water to reach further than just the edge. This is entirely own risk though and those on boats should be wearing life jackets.”

Finally, Blewett asked that volunteers please place the gathered weeds on the upstream side of the dam where there is already a pile, as placing them under the bridge means that the vegetation is washed downstream, spreading the issue.