Lion's Bush Conservancy

The hamlet of Fort Nottingham is situated 15km west of the village of Nottingham Road. The Lion's Bush Conservancy, formed in the 1980's, consists of privately owned farmland surrounding the hamlet and the 1500 hectare commonage owned by the uMngeni Municipality. They are engaged in having this area with afro-montane forest, wetland and grassland protected under the Biodiversity Stewardship Programme.

In the grassland, old wagon trails are evident among the Themeda triandra and other grasses.  Oribi are very at home on these hills. Almost 300 bird species have been recorded in the area, there are abundant reed buck, bush buck and jackal as well as baboons, duiker, serval, mongoose, ant bears, otters, porcupines, genet and occasional reports of leopard sightings too. At the highest point of the Commonage, the views include Kamberg (uNgeleni), uMngeni Poort, Inhlosane and Giant’s Castle.

Wildflowers abound - Eucomis humilis, Crassula, Geranium wakkerstroomium, Senecio. Erica aestiva, Sophubia cana, Watsonia, Kniphofia laxiflora, Eriosema and Lobelia.  In the forests, tall Yellowwoods and 70 other species of trees provide habitats for troops of Samango monkeys.  Local stories record that elephant bones were found in the bush by original settlers in the area and current residents report seeing leopard in the area recently.

The lower slopes of the hills are densely covered with Ouhout. Common Spike-thorn, Forest Knobwood, Red Pear, Sneezewood, Yellowwood, White Stinkwood, Cape Chestnut and Tree Fuchsia are common in the forest with many species of ferns, orchids, lichen and mosses. Bushbuck, samango monkeys, duiker, porcupine and bushpig inhabit the forest. Over 300 bird species have been recorded.

The Conservancy hosts a monthly walk in the area - see the events page for details.

To read more about the Conservancy, click on the following links:

http://midlandsconservanciesforum.wordpress.com/2013/01/23/hiking-around-fort-nottingham/
http://midlandsconservanciesforum.wordpress.com/2012/01/27/fort-nottingham/

Contacts:
Roy Tabernor – Chair - royandval@bundunet.com - 082 487 0922
Margie Fraser – Secretary - secretarylionsbush@gmail.com - 084 746 0948

To view the Lion's Bush Conservancy's photo gallery click here.