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Nhlanganzwani Dam

Discuss the different camps and roads of the Kruger National Park
Chris H
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Unread postby Chris H » Mon May 23, 2005 11:14 pm

Nlanganzwani dam on the S107 of the S28 south of Lower Sabie. (near the Nthandanyathi bird hide)

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craigsa
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Nhlanganzwani Dam

Unread postby craigsa » Wed Dec 21, 2005 9:30 pm

Nhlanganzwani Dam
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Elsa
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Unread postby Elsa » Thu Mar 16, 2006 1:05 pm

We saw 9 white Rhinos together at the dam last year, the most I have ever seen at one time. :shock: :D
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Unread postby Stoffel » Sun Jul 01, 2007 2:55 pm

On 12 March 2001 we saw the biggest herd of zebra we have ever seen in Kruger at this dam. We estimated it to be well over a thousand zebras together. It was one of the best sightings of general game we have seen in the park.
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Unread postby Stoffel » Wed Aug 01, 2007 2:23 pm

Sad to read about the breeching of Nhlanganzwani Dam, but one has understanding for the decision after reading the motivation for the decision. This used to be one of my favourite dams in the park.

Maybe I should not have favourite dams in Kruger, because my all-time favourite (Rabelais) is also part of history.
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Unread postby KNP Spokesman » Wed Aug 01, 2007 2:30 pm

Hi Folks

Just so that everyone is on the same page ...

Media Release: KNP Breeches Dam To Prevent Poison Spreading

EDIT: just linked to the story as it's on the home page instead of quoting in full on the forum
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Unread postby Elsa » Wed Aug 01, 2007 3:08 pm

Wow, KNPSM :shock:
Not sure what to think about this.
So what you are telling us is that there will not be any more dam there at all? :(
But I understand that all those animal deaths cannot be ignored and something had to be done.
I certainly have some wonderful memories of hours spent sitting there over the years.
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Unread postby bucky » Wed Aug 01, 2007 6:04 pm

That is sad , this is 1 of my favourite spots in this area , although lately the view point has got overgrown .

Will SANparks at least allow this to develop into a natural pan , with a closer viewpoint ?
What was in this area before the dam , was it just the river , or was there a pool of sorts ?

I wonder what will happen with the high concentration of game in this area , will duke waterhole be re opened ?

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Unread postby Elsa » Thu Aug 02, 2007 10:16 am

All very interesting questions Fizzpop has asked and ones I would like to know the answers to as well.
That dam was a fairly large expanse of water that is now not going to be there. :?
Also what is the state of the Nhlanganzwani river currently that fed the dam?
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bucky
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Unread postby bucky » Thu Aug 02, 2007 12:23 pm

I suppose that this particular dam just did not have enough water flow through it , to clean the water out .

Maybe transport dam , or other similar dams have a good seasonal flow of water through the dam , or perhaps fish species that keep the algae under control ?

Whatever the case , it is obvious the dam can not be left in this state , so the action is necessary ,especially after repeated problems .

It tends to bring back the issue of culling , and the lack of it being for the greater "bad" of the park .
In the past Hippo where culled if there numbers got to heavy in any particular dam , and rivers also .
Is the demolishing of an entire dam and the lifeblood of that area , really worth it just to not have to answer to groups because of a hippo cull ?

As fizzpop says , will the area become another orpen ?
People visiting orpen for a long time will know what I am saying , as it is a shade on its former prime viewing area status .

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Unread postby Herman » Thu Aug 02, 2007 7:43 pm

I read about this for the first time in our local newspaper "Beeld" today. At first I was quite surprised and felt a bit angry as I love that dam, but I must admit that after thinking about it, I realised that we've had wonderful sightings (Lions,cheetahs,rhinos and many smaller critters like jackals and hyenas) in that area until about two years ago. Last month - and on our last two visits to that area over the last two years, we saw very little ? I guess a lot of scientific research goes into a decision like this, so I'll hope that the correct conclusion was reached ?!!

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Unread postby KNP Spokesman » Fri Aug 03, 2007 7:21 am

bucky wrote:I suppose that this particular dam just did not have enough water flow through it , to clean the water out .

Maybe transport dam , or other similar dams have a good seasonal flow of water through the dam , or perhaps fish species that keep the algae under control ?

Is the demolishing of an entire dam and the lifeblood of that area , really worth it just to not have to answer to groups because of a hippo cull ?

.


Hi Bucky

You are 100% right in the first instance. There was not much water flowing through the system. Which brings the dam itself into question. And if you take the fact that we are in the process of eliminating artificial water points to bring the park into a more natural state, perhaps that dam wasn't meant to be there in the first place?

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Unread postby KNP Spokesman » Fri Aug 03, 2007 7:43 am

Fizzpop wrote:BUT - Questions come to mind now:
1) What of the Hippo Population living/ lived in dam? Are they culled? Left to their own fate?
2) The pressure on other water points in the area that we general public have access to is going to be incredible... what of the Nthandanyati waterhole where the hide is... Already teeming with Hippo?
3) I agree with Bucky... what of Duke Waterhole now... or are we going to see these herds we used to see disappear over the hills to the dams on the border and in the Private concession in the area?

This area was known for its high Zebra and Giraffe populations,especially in birthing season, and there is the Big "Seven" regulary seen.
So basically, can some-one tell me if this particular area is going to become a "wash-out" for game concentrations/ game viewing, if the one larger water supply source is removed and not replaced?

4) What of the other Seasonal dams - Transport dam for example, is this problem there also?

Will be intersesting to see the changes over next few Months.
(Yes Stoffel - Orpen not quite the same without Rabelais dam! :cry: )


Hi Fizzpop

Our Conservation Services department has convinced me that the breaching of the dam was the best option. To chemically treat the dam has certain challenges, least of which would have been to fence the dam off to allow the chemicals to work. In the KNP, fences don't really cut it (with five ton fence breakers walking around) so we needed a solution to the problem, and fast. To date, we have lost more than 60 animals (11 white rhinos, two lions, two cheetahs, a number of zebras, a number of wildebeest and other species) and it needed immediate action.

I will try and answer some of your questions you raise:
1) As what happened after the first spate of deaths, the hippos will probably move off to other water sources;
2) We did not notice the "pressure" building up at the other water points in 2005. Just to be devils advocate here, I wonder what the pressure looked like BEFORE this man made dam was built?
3) The dam in the Mpanamana Concession is also being investigated for the same reason. Remember SANParks still has environmental management duties in concession areas. And also, we are trying to encourage that system of natural migratory routes rather than providing artificial water points;
4) We have also picked up Microcystis algae at Sunset Dam and are monitoring the situation there carefully.

Remember that KNP is here for biodiversity conservation and we as SANParks have taken the approach of adaptive systems management when it comes to veld management. This might mean that certain things might come and go but our decisions have to always be in the interests of biodiversity management. We try and accommodate the interests of guests as far as possible (ie very few of the boreholes close to tourist roads have been closed) but there will be times and actions that tourist attractions might suffer in the interests of biodiversity management.

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Unread postby Bush Baptist » Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:33 pm

Hi KPSM,

Forgive my ignorance but does that mean the dam will be destroyed completely, or will it be sealed once the problem has gone?
Whatever (according to BB): "You are correct but I don't want to admit it".

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bucky
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Unread postby bucky » Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:36 pm

Looks to be gone for good BB .

Its a dual thing in that the problem has led to the dam getting destroyed , and then it wont get repaired as it will fall in with the unnatural water point removal policy .

I am hoping this is going to form a nice man made natural pan :lol: , with a good lookout point close enough for decent photos .


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