New by-laws released for Cape Town nature reserves

Posted by Anita Froneman on 2 November 2020

A new set of by-laws for the City Nature Reserves managed by CapeNature has been approved by the City of Cape Town.

‘Thousands of people visit our nature reserves every month. They want a safe space, and an environment that contributes to the pleasure and enjoyment of being in nature. We have a responsibility towards these visitors, but we also have a duty to ensure that we preserve our nature reserves for future generations, and that the activities taking place in these areas are sustainable and not harmful to the environment,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment, Alderman Marian Nieuwoudt in a statement.

New by-laws released for City of Cape Town nature reserves

The City of Cape Town has approved a new list of by-laws for City Nature Reserves.

These by-laws include the deployment of ‘peace officers’ to enforce the rules.

‘The by-law empowers peace officers to issue a fine, or instruct those who are contravening the by-law to leave the reserve. The instructions may be verbal or in writing, and the person must comply immediately,’ the City said.

‘It also allows the reserve manager, as the authorised official, to ban any person who fails to comply with the provisions from its nature reserves for a certain time period; and provides for procedures to appeal against any administrative decision taken by an authorised official.’

The new by-laws include:

  • Nature reserves will be open from sunrise to sunset – with no specific time given due to the extremes in the region during summer and winter
  • No reckless driving in reserves, or bundu bashing off demarcated areas
  • No person may fly a remote control plane, no drones, no landing or taking off of hot balloons and gliders, unless with authorisation
  • No picking plants, throwing seeds, collecting wood, or hunting, growing, or breeding a species in a reserve.
  • No guns allowed except by authorised contractors or officials
  • Fishing is allowed in designated areas only, and people who smoke while fishing have to do so in designated areas to avoid fires and butt pollution
  • Water sports are allowed in designated areas, and people who use water-borne transport can only travel between sunrise and sunset
  • No pollution or littering
  • Churches who hold their services on nature reserves must get authorisation to do so
  • No trade is allowed on a nature reserve, unless with authorisation
  • No fixed webcams or other image recording devices such as trail cams are allowed, and nor are recordings of animals for virtual hunting. Recreational photography and filming are permitted, but authorisation is required for other media uses, like films

Picture: Twitter/StellMun

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