Somewhere Beyond the Sea: SEAmester 2019

SEAmester Knysna Basin Project

The SA Agulhas II loomed over the dock of Cape Town Harbour. For eleven days this 134 meter cargo holder, icebreaker, and astounding research vessel was my classroom, and home. SEAmester (https://seamester.co.za/) is an annual course, run by Prof Isabelle Ansorge of the oceanography department of UCT and coordinated by Tahlia Henry, aiming to bring hands-on ship based experience to South African and international post-graduate students studying marine science. (more…)

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Keurbooms: an update on our fishy tale

We live in a changing world - the tides, the seasons, and now even more importantly our climate. With the threat of sea-level rise, we hurry to protect our properties and within the Keurbooms Estuary, the threat of flooding is known only too well. To combat the erosion caused by floods artificial structures are placed along its banks but what does this mean for the creatures living amongst the mud and seagrass? (more…)

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Stormwater management for Ashmead Channel

Stormwater management for Ashmead Channel

The Knysna Estuary is often referred to as one of the most biodiverse and iconic estuaries in South Africa and is home to the critically endangered Knysna Seahorse. Poor land use practices, urban development as well as industrial and municipal discharge all contribute a significant amount of pollution to the Ashmead Channel which receives much of its runoff from urbanised and environmentally degraded areas such as the N2 roadway, Knysna CBD and the semi-formal settlements at the headwaters of the northern and eastern catchments of the estuary. Ashmead Channel is currently facing the brunt of the impacts of urbanisation, is considered eutrophic (high nutrient and low oxygen levels) and is host to a persistent algal bloom (dominated by Ulva spp.),...

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Jonas Haller shares his South African experience

Jonas Haller Knysna Basin Project

“All Life is an Experiment. The more Experiments you make the better!” (Ralph Waldo Emerson) My time in Knysna was one of the best experiences I had in my life. I can still remember the day when I stepped onto the plane, uncertain but expectant about my research project at the Knysna Basin Project. It was the first time that I travelled to South Africa, but now I can say it fulfilled my expectations completely. I directly fell in love with the beautiful landscape, the nature and also with the warm-hearted people. Everyone was so pleasant and helpful to me and I always had the feeling I am more than welcome in their country. (more…)

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This has become home

Knysna Basin Project

Hi, my name is Merrisa Naidoo and I greet you with the warmth of Durban because its summer back home all 365 days. My initial welcome to Knysna was a rather cold one mainly because I arrived in winter last year, however this was balanced by the warmth of the Knysna community. I have been apart of the small family at the Knysna Basin Project since May 2018 conducting my Masters research in Marine Science. (more…)

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Keurbooms: a fishy tale

Keurbooms Estuary

I completed my Bachelor of Science degree in zoology and ichthyology as well as my honours in marine biology at Rhodes University. The ocean has always been a special place to me, searching through rock pools and with an eye kept on the horizon for whales I spent many hours getting sand between my toes and salt in my hair. Recently I began my masters, through Rhodes University, and my passion for marine work has brought me to the Keurbooms Estuary. (more…)

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Knysna Estuary ShoreSearch Update

We have now completed at least 3 full assessments using transects and quadrats with the help of our volunteers on our 12 sites around the estuary, including a number on the western shore. So we have a mass of data to collate and analyse and I have spent a busy time during the long, hot English summer (we are ‘swallows’) pulling this together and I am aiming to start producing reports in the new year. (more…)

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