Original Research

The classification, mapping and description of the vegetation of the Rooipoort Nature Reserve, Northern Cape, South Africa

Hugo Bezuidenhout
Koedoe | Vol 51, No 1 | a695 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/koedoe.v51i1.695 | © 2009 Hugo Bezuidenhout | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 02 March 2009 | Published: 17 August 2009

About the author(s)

Hugo Bezuidenhout, SANParks, South Africa

Abstract

The need for a scientifically-based wildlife management plan and for more knowledge on vegetation led to an investigation into the plant ecology of the Rooipoort Nature Reserve. The main aim of this study was therefore to classify, describe and map the vegetation of the reserve. The floristic data were analysed according to the Braun-Blanquet procedure using the BBPC suite. The data analysis resulted in the identification of 15 communities that can be grouped into ten major community types. This resulted in five ecology-based management units, which could assist with the compilation of an ecologically sound management plan for the reserve in order to achieve sustainable utilisation of the natural resources. The Rooipoort Nature Reserve is one of the oldest and largest private nature reserves in South Africa and as such deserves to be conserved and protected. The riverine and pan vegetation communities are considered to be endangered and are in need of special conservation and protection.

Conservation implication: The results suggest five management units, which will assist in the compilation of an ecologically sound management plan for the RNR, in order to allow sustainable utilization of natural resources.


Keywords

Northern Cape; Rooipoort Nature Reserve; vegetation classifi cation; inventory; Braun-Blanquet

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