The importance of wetlands in providing essential eco-system services and the need to conserve SA’s third most threatened habitat was highlighted at the Hermanus Flower Festival.
Whale Coast Conservation focused on the presence of frogs as an indicator of the ecological health of wetlands. Two of the YES students, Denfred and Zöhn, who have been participating with Sheraine in the frog monitoring project on the Hermanus Golf Course, were on hand to tell visitors about the frogs and tend to the live exhibit. Interactive touch screen technology was used to introduce visitors to the frogs that are likely to be found in our area and the calls we hear even if we don’t always see them. Many visitors were surprised to discover that calls that they had often heard were frogs, and not birds.
When spring eventually arrived on the last day, the crowds flocked to the Festival, which offered one of the best shows of recent years.
The live frogs on display were a great hit with children of all ages. There was love at first sight when a froggy went a-courting. A raucous toad match made, if not in heaven, at least at the Flower Festival.
It was gratifying to receive much positive comment about our display. Some people mentioned that they had heard about it and came specially to see it. There was also praise for the knowledge and helpfulness of the students.
Visitors were encouraged to become involved in WCC’s citizen-science project in which everyone can contribute to the knowledge about the distribution of frogs, and hence environmental health, along the Whale Coast.