Every Dog has his Day

Every Dog has its Day
Outramps CREW Diaries
22nd January 2019

Start-up meeting
There was a good turnout for the meeting at Strawberry Hill that signals the beginning of our CREW year for 2019. There was a lot of enthusiastic input, which promises to contribute to an exciting and productive year. In 2019, we are putting more emphasis on Over-Nighters so that we can accommodate new places that are further away. There is also going to be a huge amount of post-burn monitoring to be done after the 2018 October fires.

We have made a small change to the structure of the Outramps. Leading this active group is very onerous and we have decided to appoint a Chairman on an annual basis. This gives plenty of room for new ideas. I have taken it on for 2019, but there will be someone different in charge for 2020. Sally handled it well for 2018.

Here are the portfolios
Nicky – Generalist, iNat, Site sheets, MCSA, Knysna/Plett co-ordinator
Gail – Research and Geraniaceae, LOT
Di – Chairman, Proteaceae, Reportback, Communications, Site sheets, Transport, iNat, MCSA, SIM
Bill – Mountain trip organiser, maps and routes, MCSA
Rusell – Orchidaceae, Specimen collection, Seed Collection, LOT
Jenny – Ericaceae, Cliffortias, iNat, Site sheets, Bookings, SIM, George Co-ordinator
Marge – Iridaceae, iNat, Treasurer
Prix – Specimen collection and Mesembs,
Brian –Fabaceae, Site sheets, iNat, Stellies node
Sally – Bugs, iNat, Site sheets, MSB Project, Proofreader
Dave – Phylicas, Rutaceae, Muraltias, iNat, Site sheets, HAT
Kyle – Orchidaceae, HAT
Peter – Generalist, Computer Helpline, iNat, Site Sheets, HAT, Stellies node
Mike – Forest Species, iNat, Species Lists, Permits
Evie – HAT, MCSA, iNat, High Altitude Plants
Sandra – Mossel Bay co-ordinator, iNat, Site sheets, Funding, Proofreader
Ann – Restios, Alien eradication
Pam – Data Base

The meeting took just over an hour and was followed by a very sumptuous lunch and a HUGE BONUS! Lize von Staden who manages the Red List was in the area working with Dr Mandy Lombard on her doctoral thesis. We were delighted to see Lize and catch up with her. She has been a very good friend to the Outramps CREW Group and the work she does for the Threatened Plants Programme is invaluable. Thanks for making the time to join us, Lize.

Gerickes Punt
On Wednesday 9th January, Gerickes Punt and beyond was the hike chosen to start 2019 for WAGS. There was some debate on the likely conditions. A few days earlier, there had been dire warnings about a powerful swell that was caused by a strong low-pressure cell to the south of the country. Storm surges, massive swells and rip currents were likely to cause very dangerous conditions on our south-facing shores.

When we got to the Point, the water was still quite high and we had to do a tricky (for ancients on crutches) rock pitch to avoid getting soused. On our return, the water had dropped low enough for us hurtle round the rocks in a gap between sets.

Most of the Group breakfasted on the summit of the Sphinx, whilst Jen and I chose to walk around the shelf which surrounds it. The rock formation here is bizarre and unusual. There were plenty of rock pools with starfish and other interesting inhabitants.

There were also plenty of rowdy African Black Oystercatchers (Haematopus moquini) protecting their nests. The Kelp Gulls strutted their stuff or wheeled above us with plaintive cries, against the backdrop of the yellow cliffs and their green curtains of Drosanthemum candens. Bassia diffusa was thriving in the inter-tidal zone on the rocky shores.

Gerickes Punt is one of our most beautiful and fascinating beach walks, with rocky shores and interesting cliffs to explore. It is a great favourite with both locals and tourists in the Southern Cape.


One of my favorite places on earth is the Drakensberg, so it was with delight that I joined my family for Christmas in the Garden Castle Area near Underberg.

It was green and lush due to good summer rainfall. We climbed a steep hill to 2000m and did a few walks next to the rivers, where I found Protea dracomontana,a low growing shrublet to about 1 m. Higher up the mountain, I found Protea subvestita which is a single-stem tree to 3m with pink shuttlecock flowers. There were various grassland species, a few of which I have put in the album.

As a complete contrast, for New year we went to a farm called Zingela on the Tugela River near Weenen. This was dry valley bushveld. On arrival, we were stunned by a profusion of Vachellia tortillis in full flower. What a sight! A few days later there was a flush of Vachellia karroo. Boscia albitrunca dominated the landscape.The vegetation was completely different, but beautiful. Here, for the first time I saw Sansevieria in flower and was surprised to see that this "old Mother-in-law's tongue" has a beautiful flower.

What diversity we have in just a few hour's travel.


Every Dog has its Day
Tierkop with WAGS
The heading does not refer to the Turner dogs in the lead picture, but to Bobartia aphylla, a striking Irid with bright yellow flowers. The slopes to the south, east and west were covered with yellow Bobartias thriving in the post-burn landscape, without any serious competition. It was a truly magnificent sight.

When the slopes are covered with Fynbos, one is not really aware of the steepness of the slopes on the eastern side of Tierkop. Without cover, they plunge almost vertically down to the Kaaimans River Valley far below. The track is very narrow and slopes steeply, making it difficult to negotiate. It would be great if there was some work done on it. If not, would Cape Nature give me permission to take a couple of guys up and we will do the job in a day. Please let me know.

We were delighted to find 3 very small Disa racemosa in a seep along the track. There was the odd flowering Watsonia fourcadei, but they are coming up in their thousands. There is going to be a stunning, massed flowering display in the future. The Proteaceae seedlings are already about 5cm high. There is a very large stand of the King Fern, (Todea barbara) just below the Tierkop cave and Blechnum tabulare is lime-green and all over the place in the drainage lines

It was a wonderful day out on the black, lime-green and yellow slopes, which are the prelude to the return of the Fynbos.


Tierkop Hut via Krantzberg to the Saddle
As I came around the corner on the little footpath - gosh- it was so good to see the Tierkop Hut still standing and even surrounded with its original green grass. I guess this was a structure saved by the Fire Fighters during the late October burns in 2018.

Hiking higher up towards the top ridge/saddle – yes, the greatest parts are burnt- but a surprising large number of little unburnt islands flourish in-between. In an old patch of Berzelia intermedia and Erica viridiflora – chirp- chirp – as the Orange Breasted Sunbirds fought for the few flowers in sight. Along the path numerous Psoralea sp are busy resprouting, while Podalyria buxifolia is already in flower. At my feet there were numerous tiny Psoralea flowers, one of the trailing Psoralea sp. A few tracts of Erica seriphiifolia, Erica demissa and Villarsia capensis along the path – the Ericas seem to be old plants? Generally, in the burnt fields there were conspicuous flowers of Bobartia aphylla and Tritoniopsis caffra and ferns of all varieties. Blechnum tabulare was stunning in its new lime- green growth.

I noticed the clump of Leucospermum glabrum (EN) at higher altitude that were burnt along the outer edge only, with flowers in bud also destroyed. Will the flowers resprout?? The high altitude Mimetes pauciflorus (VU) fields on the east of the path were last seen in Dec 2017 when i-Nat “Fossilplants “ visited. They are looking very sad and very burnt.

Opposite on the western slope there was evidence of a severe, hot fire. All the vegetation, even the tree trunks of the Leucadendrons and Proteas etc were burnt. No new green yet! This was an area covered in Kystervaring (Gleichenia polypodioides) for years. The Fynbos gradually became entirely overgrown by this fern (previously reported in Dec 2107 and Dec 2016). No doubt there was extreme heat – and now – what comes next? With this amount of devastation, will it be only the Kystervaring that readily appears? I will return – "to have a look see”!


On Friday, we are heading for the Swartberg Pass and the jeep track that leads east to Bothashoek. We are also hoping to have a look at the track that goes north from the jeep track to the bottom of the Pass just above Prince Albert.. We haven't been there for absolute ages and the forecast promises a relatively cool day. We are going for the gap.
Hamba Kahle
Groete en dankie

Di Turner
Outramps CREW Group
Southern Cape

All id’s subject to confirmation by Doc Annelise and Jan Vlok, Steven Molteno, Dr Tony Rebelo, Nick Helme, Prof Charlie Stirton, Dr Robert Archer, Dr Robert McKenzie, Dr Ted Oliver, Dr Christopher Whitehouse, Adriaan Grobler, Prix Burgoyne, Dr Kenneth Oberlander, Dr Pieter Winter, Dr David Gwynne-Evans, Malthinus and Mattmatt on iNat. Thank you all for your ongoing help and support.

Outramps Places on iNaturalist – You can browse through the observations or refer to the checklist which is in alphabetical order eg. Animals, birds etc.
Cola Conservancy - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/cola-conservancy
Dune Molerat Trail - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/dune-molerat-trails
Featherbed Nature Reserve - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/featherbed-nature-reserve
Gamkaberg - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/gamkaberg
Gerickes Punt - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/gerickes-punt#/places/gerickes-punt
Gouriqua - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/gouriqua-private-nature-reserve
Gouritzmond - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/the-gouritsmond-commonage
Heaven in the Langkloof - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/heaven-in-the-langkloof
Herolds Bay - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-herolds-bay
Kammanassie - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-kammanassie-reserve
Klein Swartberg - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/klein-swartberg
Knysna - Westford Bridge https://www.inaturalist.org/places/westford-bridge-estate-knysna
Kouga Mountains Kliphuis - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-kouga-mountains
Kranshoek - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-kranshoek-
Langeberg Grootvadersbosch - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/grootvadersbosch-nature-reserve
Masons Rust - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/masons-rust-32-ptn-4-gezwinds-kraal-41-ptn-0
Mons Ruber and surrounds - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/mons-ruber-and-surrounds
Mossel Bay Aalwyndal - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/aalwyndal
Mossel Bay Diosma Reserve - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/diosma-reserve
Mossel Bay - :https://www.inaturalist.org/places/hartenbos-heuwels

Mossel Bay - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/erf-14072
Mossel Bay - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/erf-19201
Mossel Bay St Blaize Trail - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/st-blaize-trail
Natures Valley - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/nature-s-valley-south-cape-south-africa
Outeniquas Bobbejaanberg - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-bobbejanberg-in-the-outeniquas
Outeniquas Camferskloof - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-camferskloof
Outeniquas - Cradock and George Peak Trail - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/cradock-peak-trail
Outeniquas Doringrivier East - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-doringrivier-east-in-the-outeniquas
Outeniquas East - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-eastern-outeniquas-from-bergplaas-to-gouna
Outeniquas Eseljagt - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/ezeljagt-eseljagt-and-surrounds
Outeniquas Eseljagtpoort - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/ezeljagts-poort-72-ptn-0-eseljagt-poort
Outeniquas Flanagans Rock - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/flanagans-rock-rsa
Outeniquas Lange Berg - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/lange-berg-112
Outeniquas Montagu Pass North - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-montagu-pass-north
Outeniquas Paardekop - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/paardekop-13
Outeniquas Paardepoort East - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-paardepoort-east
Outeniquas Paardepoort West - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-paardepoort-wes
Outeniquas Pizza Ridge - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-pizza-ridge
Outeniquas Southern Traverse - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-outeniqua-southern-traverse
Robberg Corridor - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/robberg-coastal-corridor-krans-hoek-432-ptn-5
Robberg Corridor - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/robberg-coastal-corridor-e8267c6b-9263-4a87-a721-a24619be6dc8
Rooiberg - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-rooiberg-reserve
Spioenkop - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/ruigtevlei-plantations
Strawberry Hill - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/strawberry-hill-7-passes-road-wilderness-south-africa
Swartberg Spitskop - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/outramps-crew-spitskop-to-meiringspoort-swartberg
Swartberg Waboomsberg - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/waboomsberg-in-the-swartberg
Uitzicht Portion 39 - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/uitzigt-216-portion-39
Uitzicht - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/uitzigt-216-ptn-65
Western Head - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/walker-s-point-215-portion-1-buffalo-bay
Western Head – https://www.inaturalist.org/places/walker-s-point-215-portion-2-buffalo-bay
Western Head - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/walker-s-point-215-portion-3-buffalo-bay
Western Head - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/western-head-knysna
White Heather - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/white-heather
Wilderness Brown Hooded Kingfisher Trail – https://www.inaturalist.org/places/brown-hooded-kingfisher-trail
Wilderness Kingfisher Trail - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/kingfisher-trails
Witteberg Kromme Rivier - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/kromme-rivier-72-ptn-0-willowmore

Outramps CREW Stellenbosch HAT node
Jonkershoek created by Vynbos - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/jonkershoek-cv
Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/mont-rochelle-nature-reserve
Papegaaiberg - https://www.inaturalist.org/places/papegaaiberg

Outramps Projects on iNaturalist
Ericas of the Southern Cape - https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/ericas-of-the-southern-cape
Fungi of the Southern Cape - https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/fungi-of-the-southern-cape
Lianes and Creepers in the Southern Cape and Little Karoo - https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/lianes-and-creepers-of-the-southern-cape-and-little-karoo

Veg Types of South Africa - https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/vegetation-types-of-south-africa

Abbreviations Glossary

MCSA – Mountain Club of South Africa
MSB - Millenium Seed Bank based at Kew in the UK
WIP – Work in Progress
HAT – High Altitude Team
LOT – Lowland Team
SIM – Somewhere in the Middle Team
WAGS – Wednesday Adventure Group
VB – Vlok Boekie “Plants of the Klein Karoo” and our Plant Bible
ITRTOL – Another thread “In The Rich Tapestry Of Life”(It describes a challenging situation, usually to do with the Buchu Bus)
ITFOT – In the fullness of time
WOESS – Fair Weather Hiker
FMC and JW – too vulgar to translate, but the equivalent is “Strike me Dead” - An expression of surprise and delight on finding a new “Rare”
Kambro – same as above
Fossick – A meter per minute, scratching around looking for rares
SIDB – Skrop in die Bos – Another name for a field trip, this one coined by Prix
BAFFING – Running round like a blue-arsed fly
SYT – Sweet Young Thing - Anyone under the age of 40
TOMB – Get a move on
Mayhem - Needless or willful damage or violence
SESKRYNG – “Sit en staan kry niks gedaan” ,with thanks to Brian
SOS – Skelms on Scramblers
FW – Idiot
BOB – Another name for the Buchu Bus when she’s misbehaving.
CRAFT – A symptom of Old Age
DDD - Metalasia tricolor (Damned Diabolical Daisy)
VP – Vrekplek – Retirement Village
Qàq – Self-explanatory Inuit word describing some of our local problems
Mr Fab – Our Fabaceae specialist, Brian Du Preez – originally Boy 1
Muisvoel -The Mathematician – Peter Thompson
Boy 2 – Kyle Underwood who works on Orchids and is still at school
Sharkie – Finn Rautenbach – Our latest SYT is a surfer in his spare time and is now the Curator of the Garden Route Botanical Garden
Sicko – Someone who suffers from Car Sickness. With 4 in the Group, allocating seating in the Buchu Bus is tricky
VAG – Virgin Active Garage, which is our meeting place when we head north
MATMUE – Meet At The Mall Under E - Meeting place when we head West
WG – Waves Garage in Wilderness East. - Meeting place when we’re going east.
VU- Vulnerable
DDT – Data Deficient and Taxonomically ?
NT – Near Threatened
EN – Endangered
CR – Critically Endangered
PE – Presumed extinct
LC – Least Concern
TBC – To be Confirmed
TLC – Tender loving care
JMS – An expression of absolute disdain
FOMO – Fear of Missing Out
Milk – the fruit of the vine
Condensed Milk – Scotland’s finest export
Full Cream Milk or Fat Milk – Any product of Humulus lupulus eg. Milk Stout
Milk of the Gods – Rooibos and Brandy
Milk Shake - Sparkling Wine
NS – Species of conservation concern new to the Outramps
PS -Priority Species allocated to the Outramps by our CREW Cape Co-ordinator , Ismail Ebrahim
iNatFD – iNaturalist for Dummies as compiled by Sally
Mizzle – Mist and drizzle combined. A regular feature of George in the ”good old days”.
FE – Fire Ephemeral – only appears immediately or after a couple of years after fire
Squirrel – aka President Ramaphosa
WOG – Wrath of God – eg. incurred when you put a young Pine tree on iNat as Leucadendron album
Skedonk - A banger - old, battered motor car more than 30 years old
Hoedown - redneck gathering, usually involves shouting catchy phrases like "yee-haw" and "the south will rise again"
VHF - Vat Hom Fluffie - our nickname for furry or woolly plants
SA - Stay Attractive is Google's translation of "Mooi Bly"
OTL - Out To Lunch is used to describe the Buchu Bus when she's taking a break after she's behaved badly

Publicado por outramps-tanniedi outramps-tanniedi, 22 de enero de 2019


Hi Di

Looks like you guys have been busy as usual - well done!

Di, you write "Here is the album" on your posts, but there's no album or a link to an album. Or perhaps I've misunderstood your meaning of 'album'?

Groete, Marion

Publicado por karoopixie hace alrededor de 4 años (Marca)

The journal won't take pics and I forgot to take that out. Our normal weekly reportback goes out with pics and an Album as well. I just copy and paste from that for iNat.

Publicado por outramps-tanniedi hace alrededor de 4 años (Marca)

Di, you can certainly add pics to a journal post! They have to be somewhere on the internet (including on iNat) and then you link them with a tag < img src="http://www.website.com/imagename.jpg" > (without spaces after the < and before the >). See my Amerila key as an example.

It does require using some html code. If you're interested, I can send you an email with some code to help you :-)

Publicado por karoopixie hace alrededor de 4 años (Marca)

It would be totally new ground for me and I'm not sure that I'll cope. But please send it and then maybe I can get some of the youngsters to help me. Many thanks Marion.

Publicado por outramps-tanniedi hace alrededor de 4 años (Marca)

Di, I decided to do a post about it for you and anyone else who needs a helping hand with this - https://www.inaturalist.org/journal/karoopixie/21170-adding-photos-to-journal-and-news-posts

Publicado por karoopixie hace casi 4 años (Marca)

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