The good management of Nylsvley Nature Reserve and the long term security of water supplies for the Nyl floodplain are the Friends primary concern. Since our first work party March 1991, we’ve been responsible for: The Dragonfly and Jacana walkways, Dabchick and Kingfisher hides, the Bittern Bridge, the rehabilitation long drop toilets in the campsite and the enviro loo at Vogelfontein. We have eradicated alien plants, maintained the watering points and developed the Nyl trail. When provincial funding was limited, the Friends provided basics such as diesel, repairs to cold rooms and equipment, supplied patrol bicycles, uniforms and boots. In 1996 the Friends introduced the very popular nature based residential weekend courses for the layman.
Well over a 100 have been run on such diverse topics as Beginners birds, Waterbirds, Frogs, Trees, Stars, Raptors, Butterflies etc. The convivial environment of the group camp is an ideal training venue and the reserve an excellent outdoor classroom. Nylsvley’s bird population is closely monitored by the Annual Woodland Bird Census and the biannual CWAC count and IBA programme. Due to Friends persistence the reserve was declared a RAMSAR site in 1997. The Friends have been responsible for various publications about Nylsvley. We produce a regular Newsletter and keep in touch with members via e-mail.
The Friends are greatly indebted to many individuals, Clubs and organisations for funding, especially WWF, Wits Bird Club and Sasol Pty Ltd. and for support from The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa and BirdLife South Africa to whom we are affiliated. The Friends have been the recipients of several National Environmental Awards, the latest being an Owl Award from BirdLife South Africa in June 2008.Future projects include the development of an environmental exhibition and the production of the Nyl trail booklet.
A priority is the acquisition of more land for the reserve and the development of a Special Birder Friendly campsite. We wish to facilitate the setting up of a University- supervised Research Station to promote Avifauna focused studies.
Friends of Nylsvley affiliated to WESSA and BirdLife SA. PBO 930010829