A volunteer clean-up took place today at Lonehill Dam and wetland in Fourways, Johannesburg. Around Lone Hill – the koppie – is a little piece of conserved nature – a remnant of what this part of the world looked like before development. The small dam nearby is a popular walking spot for local residents.

ARMOUR committee member, Mark Mcclue, was there. “One team cleared rubbish from the top of the spruit as it enters Lonehill. It is amazing how much plastic rubbish can enter the spruit, in a short stretch of a few hundred metres. The other apparent factor, very evident from last night’s storm impact, is the speed and volume of run-off with its resulting erosion.

“The second team tackled the massive volume of invasive weed that is choking the dam.”

There is a difficult, emotive debate between parties, says Mark. “Some want a clear dam to look nice and to fish in. Others suggest adapting the man-made feature to incorporate the natural run-off of the spruit through restoring the wetland. There is a view that the dam could be encouraged to become one wetland system with channels and pools for dealing with storm run-off and attracting more indigenous flora and fauna. This perhaps would be more sustainable. Either way – it was great to see another example of the community getting involved at a localised level and listening to the water!”

Source: Helen Duigan

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