Last year I took this photo of the lovely Bot River estuary. We are privileged to live within walking distance of its shores. You may notice, if you look up at the top of this page, the banner-header of this website is cropped from the same photograph.
Time and time again I am drawn to try and capture the most astonishing variety of moods and vistas that are on display throughout the year as the seasons change.
This estuary is situated in the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve on the southern coast of South Africa. It lies at the bottom of a broad and fertile valley and measures about six by two kilometres. It is quite shallow with an average depth of 1 – 2 metres (3 – 6 feet). The Bot and Afdaks rivers feed this estuary which seasonally opens to the sea. This ensures a rich variety of fauna, some 32 species of fish and over 50 kinds of birds including pelicans, flamingos and the other waders. Most are migratory and so are seen at different times of the year. Occasionally a herd of wild horses grazes on the grassy banks (See 12 images or click here for Flickr slide show).
The Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve has an almost incredible 1,880 different plant species per 10,000 square kilometres, by far the highest diversity in the world. The next highest is the Amazon rain forest with 420 species in the same area. The Kogelberg reserve lies in the heart of the Cape Floral Kingdom, the smallest and richest of the world’s six floral kingdoms. Click on the photos below to enlarge.