Water has enormous and complex value for our animals, people, food, health, education and the integrity of our natural environment. Here are just a few ways that we monitor and provide this valuable resource in sustainable ways for human and wildlife alike at Jabulani. We wanted to share this with you on this World Water Day – an annual United Nations observance day held on 22 March that highlights the importance of fresh water and that is used to advocate for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.
Wildlife & the Waterhole
There are many waterholes in the reserve for the natural capturing of rain water. These waterholes supply drinking water for various animals on the reserve who come to drink at its edges.
The impala, zebra, giraffe, the leopard, lion, buffalo, the elephant, wild dog, hyena… all the wild animals are provided for, as the rain water collects at the catchment areas.
Rain is life in the bush and while these dams help to provide water all year around, the rain helps to naturally water all 16 000 hectares of our Big 5 Kapama Private Game Reserve.
We monitor and maintain the structure of the waterholes as needed, such as one of our waterhole (named Egyptain Goose Dam), where we improved the dam wall and made it stronger and bigger to be able to capture more water.
For the Jabulani elephants and orphans at HERD, we also have a bana grass plantation that we tend to each day, alongside the orphanage, to provide an extra source of food. Water for the bana grass is used straight from the Klaserie River, full of nutrients needed for them to continue growing tall and strong.
Our Jabulani lodge, staff house and other accommodation on the reserve makes use of water from the river. This water is pumped from the all-year-round Klaserie River and goes through a process of purification. The Klaserie River is a natural source for the Jabulani treatment plant and connects via pipelines into holding tanks. It is a very standardised system to ensure general compliance with water regulations. Water from the river is also tested with regular intervals in order to detect any contamination.
Purification begins from this central location. First the water is pumped from the river into a flock tank. The first step is screening where large debris such as sticks and sand are removed from the water. Surface water presents a greater risk of having been polluted because of the bigger area of contamination and therefore the river is an amazing source as it flows and is a ‘deep’ source of water.
Filtration of water through a sand filtration follows, which helps to separate and suspends solids to the bottom. Chlorine is used to control the growth of bacteria in pipes and tanks which are cleaned in regular intervals. This is all the part of the pre-treatment process.
The purification process consists of flocculation, which mixes the water with large paddles in order for particles to be brought together into larger clumps or floculant that slowly settle to the bottom of the tank. Disinfection follows and an ultraviolet (UV) ray penetrates harmful pathogens and destroys illness-causing microorganisms. It is a very simple, effective and environmentally safe system.
The aquaponics system has been put in place to maintain a vegetable garden and is also used for educational purposes. The system works as follows: Clean river water is poured into the fish tank, the tilapia’s fish manure which provides natural fertiliser will be pulled through. Then the nutrient-rich water is pushed through the grow beds, supplying plants with wholesome oxidised water, facilitating rapid growth of the plants, and clean water is returned to the fish tank using a bell siphon.
Water used is recirculated in a closed system, reducing the amount of water used!
Read more about our sustainability at Jabulani in our blogs: