KwaZulu Natal Game and Nature ReservesThe Karkloof Conservancy
The Karkloof Conservancy protect a beautiful 40 000 hectare area of land set high in the Natal Midlands – a series of wetlands, grasslands and natural forests within which live a range of wildlife that include all three of the country's endangered crane species.
The Karkloof conservancy protects the biodiversity of the Karkloof in the Midlands. It is formed by a group of local farmers, foresters and landowners who are involved in a number of community projects to conserve the area that include bird counts, game counts, invasive plant control and land care programmes.
The Karkloof is, interestingly, named after an upturned ox-wagon that served as a landmark along the major route between Natal and what was once the Transvaal.
As a result of the conservancy, farmers here practise environmentally friendly farming, cutting back on alien invasive plants and maintaining the quality of their soil and vegetation. Farmers in the Karkloof Conservancy also practise no-till cropping for maize, and biodiversity within agriculture by allowing corridors of natural habitat that support the natural movement of animals and plants.
The conservancy's 'headquarters' lie in the conservation centre dedicated to educating and spreading the message of conservation in the Karkloof. It rests at the entrance to Gartmore Farm, roughly 15km north of Howick, as does one of the two bird hides that form part of the conservation centre with views out over a series of natural wetlands and dams.
Neighbouring farm, Loskop, is the site of a second bird hide. Both boast sightings of the blue, crowned and wattled cranes, as well as another 180 species of bird that congregate in the area at varying times of the year.
A bird guide is available to take visitors on guided walks as well as visiting. Another of her tasks is to visit all the local farm schools to engage with children about environmental issues.
Popular Activities in and near Karkloof Conservancy
Crane & Conservation Centre
The Karkloof Crane and Conservation Centre is an exquisite natural resource in the heart of scenic KwaZulu-Natal. While it offers visitors plenty of beautiful vistas and variety, it is, essentially, an attraction for bird-lovers and avian enthusiasts...
More info and contact details: Karkloof Crane & Conservation Centre
Karkloof Canopy Tour
The Karkloof Canopy Tour has been built in a spectacular valley of the Karkloof Forest Reserve. The tour includes long swooping slides over the treetops of the forest, stops below a 15m waterfall and takes in wide views across the Karkloof valley...
More info and contact details: Karkloof Canopy Tour